Electronic books may have won many fans and may have secured support from a large number of individuals. However, this is not to say that the field is completely free of controversy. Copyright management is a very big issue as far as digital and electronic books are concerned. Entire libraries are stored in the computer. Access to books is controlled with help of Digital Rights Management solutions. In such a scenario, third party book sellers and e book reader sellers may be in a position to access and manipulate your libraries.
In a shocking move, seller of world’s most popular e book reader deleted copies of certain books from personal libraries of customers. This was done because the seller did not have the authority to sell the books. This snowballed into a big controversy because deletion of books was done without permission of the owners of the books. To put things in perspective, the act of the company was no different than a stranger entering your house and destroying your asset simply because he did not have right to sell the same.
That the libraries were set up on the internet and were accessible to sellers and service provider made a huge difference. Today, privacy becomes a very big issue with online books. Such practices related to electronic books may lead to online censorship. A change in policy on the part of one seller may result in deletion of books from the libraries of millions of customers. That they may have paid for the same and may be enjoying legal access becomes irrelevant.
These are issues that will have to be sorted out before electronic books can claim to be better than standard books, but for now those who wish to hang on to their books and maintain security and privacy for all their others files, users should download drivers that maintain tight security even when users are not logged in. Today, a paper book purchased and kept in the library cannot be touched without your permission. The issue is muddled in case of electronic books and one cannot say for sure whether one’s personal library will be free of external interference. The author, publisher, book seller, e book reader seller, service provider maintaining the library and the customer- there are too many parties involved.