'No discernible increase in piracy' from DRM-free e-books

SciFi imprint Tor UK's verdict on a year without copy restrictions

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A little over a year ago, Speculative Science Fiction publisher Tor decided to do away with digital rights management (DRM) for its e-books.

The company's publisher Tom Doherty said that the time that authors were supportive because DRM frustrates readers. “It prevents them from using legitimately-purchased e-books in perfectly legal ways, like moving them from one kind of e-reader to another,” Doherty said.

A year later and Tor has revealed what happened next.

Nothing.

Or nothing discernible, to be precise.

The company recently posted a summary of its experiences in which it says “ … we’ve seen no discernible increase in piracy on any of our titles, despite them being DRM-free for nearly a year.”

But the publisher has seen plenty of upside, described as follows by Tor UK editorial director Julie Crisp:

“The move has been a hugely positive one for us, it’s helped establish Tor and Tor UK as an imprint that listens to its readers and authors when they approach us with a mutual concern—and for that we’ve gained an amazing amount of support and loyalty from the community.”

Tor plans to keep releasing its books without DRM. ®

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