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Topic: Audible Sharing?

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Old 10-14-2006, 07:39 PM
#1
 
Junior Lounger
 
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Audible Sharing?

Is it illegal for lets say... my friend who buys audible books to send them to me?
If it is illegal, does it even work? or will it not play due to copyright protection or something?



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Old 10-14-2006, 09:11 PM
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if I remember correctly the Audible files are protected files. they require a username/password authentication to play. I dont know if the Audible files can be authorized to play on more than one computer or not.



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Old 10-15-2006, 04:19 AM
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I think you can activate your Audible account on up to 3 computers and 3 devices that support Audible playback (e.g., iPod, PDA, phone). You can have up to two different active Audible accounts play on an Audible-ready device, but I think the selection of which account to allow is automatic based on the (up to 2) accounts with the largest amount of Audible content on your device. This works well, for example, if husband and wife each have their own Audible accounts but sometimes want to share audiobooks. Putting copies of a book onto each other's players would count as a second device activation. If three different Audible accounts were activated for a single device, you'd only be able to play the two accounts with the most Audible content. The third activation would not result in material you could listen to, as long as the two accounts with more content had files on your iPod. While you can deativate computers and devices (for example, before sending in your computer for repair), you're limited in the number of activations/deactivations you can make in a short time span. If you have a catastrophic failure (e.g. your disk crashed, so you can't deactivate, and you're up against your machine quota), you can get in touch with Audible support.

In order to activate an account on your computer or iPod, you have to know the password. That means that anyone you share a password with is equally able to make purchases on your Audible account and have them charged to your credit card. So you'd have to feel comfortable about that in order to share your account. Of course, you're allowed to burn one backup copy of your download to audio CD, but only to full audio CD.

The Audible DRM is pretty flexible as far as some of these things go. You can download mutiple times anything you've purchased, whether or not you are a current subscriber. (You just can't do it on more than the authorized number of computers). You can play Audible files on a range of other Audible-ready players as well as your computer.

Maybe someone else who has used the sharing features can chime in. HTH
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Old 10-15-2006, 04:35 AM
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So if someone sends me the audible audiobook file, can I import it into iTunes with no problems? Is there something in the file itself that will recognize its been used on one computer already and prevent me from using it?



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Old 10-16-2006, 04:05 PM
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Your computer would have to be activated for the file to play. That would mean that you would have to know the password for the account the audiobook file was purchased under. The same goes true if you want to be able to play the audiobook file on your iPod. You'd have to activate the iPod for the Audible account used to purchase that audiobook. Those would count against the total number of device activations permitted to that account.

That's what I meant by saying that anyone sharing account password information has full access to making credit card purchases on that account. The current Audible scheme covers close family members who want to share audiobooks, because a husband or wife could simply go to the computer they use, attach their S.O.'s iPod, and activate the device while putting on the audiobook file without having to give anyone else their password. It would count against the 3 device activations, and be playable on that iPod. If the S.O. already had an Audible account, with separate audiobooks, files from both accounts would be playable on that device. But if audiobooks from a third Audible account were added, only the two Audible accounts with the most audiobooks on the device would work, even if the 3rd account were legitimate.

Any activity where the Audible account owner is not present to type in the password for activating the account would require your knowing his password; and then he'd basically be entrusting you with his credit card information for all the account purchases, etc.

Quote:
So if someone sends me the audible audiobook file, can I import it into iTunes with no problems? Is there something in the file itself that will recognize its been used on one computer already and prevent me from using it?
You'd be able to add it to iTunes, but it wouldn't play on your computer unless you could activate it with the Audible password for that account -- the information is encoded in the file. If you wanted to play it on your iPod, you'd similarly have to activate the device with a password. Each of these activations would count against the total number of computer and device activations permitted on your friend's account, assuming he's at all willing to give you his password information and effectively a free pass to make Audible credit card purchases on his account.

On the other hand, the current DRM scheme allows anyone who has purchased audiobook files from Audible to continue to access them, even through multiple computer hard disk crashes, and even if the file is no longer currently offered for sale at Audible. That means anyone who has purchased the audiobook file, even if he or she is not a subscriber to their plans. And if, in some cases, the file has been re-recorded, then you also have access to the new, better versions. I think they did that for some people who purchased the original Ender's Game recording by Orson Scott Card, but it applies to any other files that they re-encode.

I don't have any experience with sharing Audible files this way. My replies are based on previous postings over the last few years by people who have shared accounts. Maybe someone else can give you more information.
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Old 10-16-2006, 05:11 PM
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Thanks for the detailed response.
-Mike



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