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eReader.com Limits E-book Sales To US Citizens 182

Posted by timothy
from the geography-is-destiny dept.
An anonymous reader writes "eReader.com seems to have begun applying distribution restrictions to its library. I first noticed that there was a FAQ page about distribution restrictions this morning. When I tried to order a few books this afternoon I simply couldn't — a large banner on the order confirmation told me the books had distribution restrictions. I checked a number of titles but it seems a large number of books are no longer available to non-US citizens like me. It is interesting to note that this policy change got implemented shortly after Barnes&Noble purchased Fictionwise. I have no idea if the new owners are behind this new policy but it seems crazy to restrict sales of ebooks. I've bought dozens of ebooks from eReader the past 4 years. I still have 15 dollar store credit but cannot buy any of the books I am interested in." (Right now, the link that should display these new geographic restrictions returns an error message that says the page is being updated.) Sounds like Barnes & Noble is taking its cues from Apple.
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eReader.com Limits E-book Sales To US Citizens

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  • by eldavojohn (898314) * <eldavojohnNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Sunday April 19, 2009 @11:08PM (#27641533) Journal

    (Right now, the link that should display these new geographic restrictions returns an error message that says the page is being updated.)

    Well, they still have their (what I assume to be their old) Geographic Restrictions page here [ereader.com] up and it says:

    We are legally bound to restrict sale of titles that have these limitations to the allowed countries. If we did not, we would lose the books and nobody would be able to buy them from us. We don't like it any more than you do, believe us when we tell you that. It causes us not only to lose sales, but also to get complaints from customers, and we like to keep our customers happy.

    I don't think they're taking a cue from anybody, they're just following distribution laws so they don't lose their license to distribute ... and possibly face a lawsuit. Once you get big enough, you become a target. I wouldn't blame eReader or B&N ... blame a shitty distribution system.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      What makes you think this is a matter of laws and not a stupid restriction placed into their contract by the content rights owners? It would be nice to know the content rights owners hanging on to the old distribution models so the complaints could be sent there.

      • by eldavojohn (898314) * <eldavojohnNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Sunday April 19, 2009 @11:34PM (#27641673) Journal

        What makes you think this is a matter of laws and not a stupid restriction placed into their contract by the content rights owners?.

        Yes but it's important to remember why these contracts were often in place. I mean, it wasn't that we had to get all of Herman Melville's whaling stories to China so they could enjoy them ... it was to ail a very real problem of people taking literature, translating it and selling it in foreign countries with no revenue going to the original artist or publisher. So I believe it was commonplace to accept distribution contracts to--ironically--protect your works from being distributed for free in foreign countries where you would have no chance of prosecuting. But if someone is there with distribution rights, the people posing as you had better watch out!

        There are other reasons for these distribution contracts and I'll bet a lot of them are along the lines of "sure we'll take a few thousand from you because no one's going to read this in your area" ... have fun with those piracy lawsuits.

        I would like to call distribution rights an old or archaic system but frankly that's what's in place and you'd need to point out how it would protect their work from being sold without consent if you dreamed up a new system. I'm sure it varies publisher to publisher but the rights are probably an ongoing contract that would be difficult to change. You have some very real barriers to overcome ... like court cases to handle piracy, accurate translations, royalty management, etc. What system do you propose replace distribution rights contracts?

        • by bcrowell (177657) on Monday April 20, 2009 @12:46AM (#27641933) Homepage

          it was to ail a very real problem of people taking literature, translating it and selling it in foreign countries with no revenue going to the original artist or publisher. So I believe it was commonplace to accept distribution contracts to--ironically--protect your works from being distributed for free in foreign countries where you would have no chance of prosecuting.

          This may be one of the historical reasons for the restrictions, but I don't think it has much to do with the present reasons for them.

          To start off with, you have to understand that traditional-style print publishing is an extremely capital-intensive business. It costs a huge amount of money to set a traditional (not print-on-demand) printing setup for a run. Once you have it set up, the incremental cost of producing one more book is virtually zero. Then you have this huge inventory, which you have to hope you can sell. Because of this, magazines and book publishing houses want to make sure that their contract with the author is exclusive. I've sold some short fiction, and typically what happens is that they want first North American serial rights (FNASR) and exclusivity for a certain amount of time. Books are somewhat different, but it's still the same general concept either way. If they're going to spend the money to put you in print, they want to be damn sure that readers will be getting your writing through them. (By the way, most short fiction markets don't mind at all if you put your work up for free online after a certain amount of time has elapsed.)

          However, it would be ridiculous for them to try to demand that kind of exclusivity worldwide. In many cases they simply don't have marketing, sales, and distribution in other countries, so demanding exclusivity would do them no good, and would do the author harm.

          There are also all kinds of other things that the publisher doesn't want exclusivity for because they're not in a position to exercise the rights effectively. For instance, it's very common these days for people to publish short fiction in a magazine, and then afterward sell audio rights so that people can buy a recording to listed to on their iPod or in their car. In the case of short fiction, there's also the possibility that it will be anthologized, and that's something a book publisher is going to handle, not the magazine publisher. None of this is an evil plot. It's just common business sense.

          By the way, in my opinion Fictionwise is very cool. As a writer, I need to be familiar with my genre (SF). If someone tells me, "You've got to read 'Out of All Them Bright Stars' by Nancy Kress," I want to read it. The library doesn't have it, and I don't particularly want to pay $10-20 for an anthology so that I can read that one story. Well, I can simply buy it on fictionwise for a buck. Best deal ever. It's like being able to buy one song on iTunes or Amazon rather than having to buy the whole album full of crappy filler that you didn't want.

          • by Jafafa Hots (580169) on Monday April 20, 2009 @04:28AM (#27642865) Homepage Journal

            I'm wondering if they aren't just trying to set themselves up like the DVD cartels did - with the ability to sell books for $1.00 in places where people can only afford $1.00, while preventing people in places where they can afford to pay $10 from buying "grey market" books.

          • (yawn). An Average Joe says, "Whatever."

            If I can't buy a book legally, then I'll get it illegally off the net. All the companies are doing is shooting themselves in the foot - they're not hurting me at all - and instead they should be negotiating for worldwide internet distribution rights, not just confining themselves to one nation or one region.

            • What company? The one that has the rights to publish in the U.S., or the one that has the rights to publish in the U.K.? or somewhere else? It is not always the same company that publishes a book in different countries, even when the publisher has a division in both countries.
              As an author, Publisher A has a division in the U.K. and in the U.S.. The U.K. division wants to publish your book, the U.S. division doesn't. Publisher B also has a division in both countries. The U.S. division of Publisher B wants t
        • by MrMista_B (891430)

          Well here's a blindingly obvious answer to your question: iTunes for ebooks.

          There, rights problem solved.

        • "was to ail a very real problem of people taking literature, translating it and selling it in foreign countries with no revenue going to the original artist or publisher."

          Sorry this as the main excuse is total tosh. This happening would have no effect if it was in eReader or book form. This has been going on for years. If anything the eReader makes this more annoying to do (can't distribute pages among multiple people to type faster, can't OCR).

          The reason why they have it like this is simply for the real wo

        • by Aceticon (140883)

          Nah it has nothing to do with copy protection: in this world of high quality OCR applications, scanning a book a making a text file out of it is very easy.

          It's all about maximizing income by partitioning the market into segments and then charging each segment the maximum they can. Same as region coding for DVDs.

          You see, in an ideal world (from the point of view of the seller), a seller would be able to charge each and every buyer the maximum said buyer is willing to pay for the product or service being sold

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by TheCarp (96830) *

          > it was to ail a very real problem of people taking literature, translating it and selling it in foreign countries with no revenue going to
          > the original artist or publisher.

          What I find interesting here is that this is roughly the same problem as was described in a post here about child porn. That it... this all originated back in a time when only professionals with some serious bankroll could do this. You used to need a printing press, which was beyond the means of the average person... just like ki

    • Exactly right. This is not something companies have a choice over... if you don't own the distribution rights in a particular country and sell anyway, whomever does own them will eat you for breakfast.

      Oh, and the restriction mentioned would be to residents, not citizens. A US citizen living abroad would be restricted just like anyone else in their country of residence, while foreigners in the United States would not be.
      • Oh, and the restriction mentioned would be to residents, not citizens. A US citizen living abroad would be restricted just like anyone else in their country of residence, while foreigners in the United States would not be.

        This is not true, I believe the only way they determine what country you reside in is your credit card. So as long as your credit card is still linked to your home on U.S. soil, purchase away while abroad and download as you'd like. In the original Geographic Restrictions, they stated this and I would expect it to be the same way since it's the safest way and the way Amazon does it. Quite counter-intuitive as a foreigner could walk into any brick and mortar store and pick up a copy (hopefully in a langua

        • >>>This is not true, I believe the only way they determine what country you reside in is your credi

          You've never heard of IP addresses? They pinpoint where you are located, so even if you are a U.S. citizen vacationing in the UK, you won't be able to access the website to purchase the book.

        • That's why I said living abroad instead of travelling. The point is that citizen is the wrong choice of word... it has nothing to do with what country you are a citizen of.
      • by ssintercept (843305) <ssintercept@nOSpaM.gmail.com> on Sunday April 19, 2009 @11:56PM (#27641775) Journal

        Oh, and the restriction mentioned would be to residents, not citizens. A US citizen living abroad would be restricted just like anyone else in their country of residence, while foreigners in the United States would not be.

        according to Ereader its your billing address of your credit card:

        How do you determine what country a customer is in? We look at the billing country of your credit card to determine your location.

        source- http://mobile.ereader.com/ereader/mobile/help/GeographicRestrictionsFAQ.htm [ereader.com]

        as long as your credit card is resolving to the US/Canada or another non-restricted country you are in the clear.

        • by daveime (1253762)

          The bain of my life for these past 12 years ... dumbass websites who assume that because you hold a credit card in one country, you must BE in that country.

          So people with credit cards don't travel abroad ?

          People with credit cards automatically cancel them if they move overseas, destroying a great credit history and limit, just to make e-commerce easier ?

          Yes, I have a UK credit card, but live in the Philippines ... good to see your GeoIP lookup is working, look forward to you programming some common sense in

    • by Mista2 (1093071)

      Now let me see, I can buy a book or a CD/DVD from Amazon.com and have it shipped to me here in NZ, but I can't download movies/mp3's or buy ebooks or listen to pandora.com?
      Umm, I wonder why the pirates win?
      Hey America, you are only one country, not the whole friken world!

  • by amclay (1356377) on Sunday April 19, 2009 @11:10PM (#27641545) Homepage Journal
    I don't see why a company should have to sell things to other countries. Despite the internet being free, things contained on the internet do not necessarily have to be geographically free. It reduces the amount of time, energy, and money they might have to spend on lawyers looking up various countries copyright claims, and their market may primarily be based in the United States. Of course, in time this might change, but I'm not one for forcing companies to do things some other way. I'll just buy from another company. Capitalism wins in the end.
    • by Chabil Ha' (875116) on Monday April 20, 2009 @12:36AM (#27641895)

      It reduces the amount of time, energy, and money they might have to spend on lawyers looking up various countries copyright claims, and their market may primarily be based in the United States.

      So maybe I'm riding on my fanciful unicorn while writing this, but the Internet offers a unique possibility to dissolve borders. This isn't about anarchy or forcing my world view on people, this is about people coming together irrespective of their location and having an intellectual, economical, and political dialogue.

      The side effects of the Internet's design include creating a borderless society. Why should I have to look up the laws of another country? In effect, they are a traveler that has arrived in the US and are electronically conducting trade. It's as if they arrived here, pulled out a credit card and paid for a product, and got back on their plane home. Except this plane goes nearly the speed of light and they don't have to enjoy the privilege of a body cavity search at the airport.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by THEbwana (42694)

        In effect, they are a traveler that has arrived in the US and are electronically conducting trade. It's as if they arrived here, pulled out a credit card and paid for a product, and got back on their plane home

        I think this is why people get so massively irritated by these restrictions.
        When a customer gets turned away from a web based shop, it is usually not perceived by the customer as a sale rejected due to some import/export restriction - instead, the people impacted by these restrictions feel as though they've entered the store, chosen a product, produced their credit card in order to pay - just to find themselves being kicked out of the store due to their nationality.

        I remember in the old days (10-15 years ag

    • I don't see why a company should have to sell things to other countries.

      Well one reason would be that they are required to by trade agreements entered into by their governments. For example the NAFTA requires that once you start selling a product to one of the member countries you have to keep selling it unless you also restrict selling to customers in the home country - i.e. no discriminating against the consumers in other countries. The US actually pushed hard for this because they didn't want Canada

      • by mpe (36238)
        For example the NAFTA requires that once you start selling a product to one of the member countries you have to keep selling it unless you also restrict selling to customers in the home country - i.e. no discriminating against the consumers in other countries.

        Except that there in practice appear to be all sorts of exemptions. e.g. all the fuss made by the US over pharmacuticals, the difficulty Canadians have subscribing to US satellite TV, even the US having different Harry Potter books from the rest of t
        • Sometimes things do have top be taken to trade tribunals to get a ruling. I'm not sure what you are referring to about US pharmaceuticals so I can't comment. Canadians not being able to subscribe to satellite TV isn't a violation because it is Canada stopping it's citizens from buying it rather than the US saying it can't be sold to Canadians. Although I think control over the airwaves may in fact be exempted for all countries. And there are all sorts of violations that nobody cares enough to do anything ab
    • Empty Ideology (Score:5, Insightful)

      by aepervius (535155) on Monday April 20, 2009 @01:08AM (#27642005)
      Capitalism only wins if there are neither artificial or natural monopolies (and one could argue that with books it is certainly often the case) or artificial barrier to competition like DRM to implement region encoding. There is no reason whatsoever to have something like BITS limited to a region of the globe, except to artificially limit the market.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by MikeFM (12491)

      Downloading illegally wins in the end. I just went on BT and downloaded some 45,000+ titles from Fictionwise. Good thing they wouldn't let me give them any money.

      • by Mista2 (1093071)

        Yeah, it's not theft if you aren't allowed to buy it is it?
        They certainly can't claim a lost sale when they claim for damages.

        • by MikeFM (12491)

          *shrugs* If they won't sell it to me and it's not private material then it should go into the public domain. Once made public it should never stop being public - it's part of our shared culture.

          I'd like it if there was a central repository (maybe the LoC) that you could legally get digital copies of everything. They could collect and distribute payments when something was still in copyright and otherwise make it available for free. It frustrates me when something I used to have and was lost/damaged can no l

      • I keep trying to find e-books online to download, but I never can. None of the books I want to read seem to be available on any of the big torrent sites :(

        • by MikeFM (12491)

          This was all sci fi/fantasy which is what I mostly like. I stumbled upon it while looking for an out of print book I liked as a teenager. Is something like 7GB of ebooks. Looks to be all Fictionwise and after reading a few I'm not sure I would have been happy paying for these as the editing is poor and obviously the result of OCR. A shame we can't have a group project to improve the editing.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      I'll just buy from another company.

      Where else can I get Hulu.com content then? The Pirate Bay?

      • by hedwards (940851)

        That's what we sometimes call leaving money on the table. It's unfortunate that users are chased over to sites like the Pirate bay due to a lack of availability. Admittedly it's somewhat wise to be skeptical when that argument is made, but it is true, if people are locked out they're definitely not going to pay for the items.

    • by furby076 (1461805)
      What you fail to see is this is slashdot and if the answer doesn't mean "unlimitted, free and unrestricted access" then it is the wrong one.

      People here don't care about the business sense, or the time money an author, and publisher spent - they just want the work up and available for all. There is a sense of entitlement which is prevelant on this forum - that for some reason people are entitled to everything anyone ever thought or put on "paper". It is irrelevant if the person/company spent time or mon
      • by blueskies (525815)

        There is a sense of entitlement which is prevelant on this forum - that for some reason people are entitled to everything anyone ever thought or put on "paper". It is irrelevant if the person/company spent time or money.

        When was the last time you've seen a copyright expire? Hold your breath until you see another copyright expire and then get back to me.

  • No story here (Score:3, Interesting)

    by cjfs (1253208) on Sunday April 19, 2009 @11:19PM (#27641597) Homepage Journal

    Outdated contracts based on a pre-Internet view reduce company's profits yet again.

    Why can't I view youtube videos to follow at 11.

  • by doktor-hladnjak (650513) on Sunday April 19, 2009 @11:24PM (#27641627)
    They're not restricting sales to US Citizens. They're restricting sales to US residents (presumably people who have an account with a credit card billing address in the US).
    • by QuantumG (50515) *

      Yeah, you don't need to be a US resident to have that either.

      • Nope. Probably you have forgotten about a small law known as PATRIOT Act.
        It makes sure that for a banking relationship to be established between you AND a US-based bank, you MUST have a US residence. Proof Needed including but not limited to Federal ID and/or Passport of any nation which US has recognized (which means no Taiwan passport), and residence proof by way of lease agreement and/or DMV non-driving ID.
        In short, you MUST be a lawful US resident to get a US-issued Credit Card.

        • by radish (98371)

          That simply isn't true in the general sense of "banking relationships", the Patriot Act only requires that the institution confirms your identity and checks you against a blacklist. Many US banks will open checking & savings accounts for non-residents, although getting something like a credit card would be harder (and may be impossible, but I doubt it). I did it myself a few years ago, and I know a number of non-US residents living outside the US with perfectly legal US based accounts. You will need to

      • by Mista2 (1093071)

        I had a paypal account with an NZ credit card, iTunes US store required a US address (Before it came to NZ) but luckily there was a sign up system that allowed you to use your Paypal account to verfy your credit card. Viola, I had a US iTunes account 8)
        Then realised DRM sucked, and hardly ever bought anything from them.
        Allofmp3.com did really well out of me until visa stopped letting them process their orders.

  • If I ever write a book, you can damn well bet I won't sanction distribution in Britain.

    International law is an absolute clusterfuck, especially where IP is concerned. There's really not much to be done. Of course, it would be nice to get rid of region coding and other such bull, but it's here to stay.

    • If I ever write a book, you can damn well bet I won't sanction distribution in Britain.

      Those who can, do, those who can't, complain about potential distribution in Britain.

    • If I ever write a book, you can damn well bet I won't sanction distribution in Britain.

      International law is an absolute clusterfuck, especially where IP is concerned. There's really not much to be done. Of course, it would be nice to get rid of region coding and other such bull, but it's here to stay.

      Fine, then you don't the money that people are willing to give you for it, instead they will resort to acquiring it through less legitimate means and you will still lose.

    • by Bert64 (520050)

      So you're saying you would rather people in Britain pirate your work than buy it? Or do you have some kind of racist agenda against the brits?

  • The publishing business has always been set up in regions.

    An author sells rights to publish his/her work to different publishers in different countries, and there's often either legal protection or trade agreements to prevent parallel distribution of editions from other regions.

    So, a book might be published by Doubleday in the US but by Pan MacMillan in Australia, and the major book chains in Oz wouldn't carry the Doubleday version (some specialised genre bookshops might.)

    This is almost certainly Fiction

    • An author sells rights to publish his/her work to different publishers in different countries, and there's often either legal protection or trade agreements to prevent parallel distribution of editions from other regions.

      ...which was great during the Victorian Era, but not today.
      Why can't RIAA/MPAA/Publishers realize that their world has changed? Are they that stupid and dumb?
      An author usually listens to his publisher and is always interested in the Largest audience possible simultaneously (possibly before

  • by arrenlex (994824) on Monday April 20, 2009 @12:53AM (#27641953)

    With matters like these, fortunately, the solution is very simple

    Here it is:
    http://thepiratebay.org/ [thepiratebay.org]

    Here you have a case where you are willing to pay for a legitimate product but you are unable to acquire it due to arbitrary and pointless restrictions.

    It's the same sort of problem as DRM. Region locking, device locking ... primarily serve to piss off customers. So go wild.

    (When you CAN legitimately purchase the product you desire, of course, piracy thereof becomes a totally different matter).

  • They have won... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by WoollyMittens (1065278) on Monday April 20, 2009 @01:05AM (#27641989)
    I'm sorry to say that the intellectual property tycoons have won the war of artificial scarcity. It's nonsense to restrict the sale of bits, but they seem to have been able to buy laws in most civilized countries that enforce their obsolete business model. For the normal people like us, there's only one recourse: STEAL THE BOOK.
    • Which is exactly what i do.
      None from RIAA/MPAA and the Book Publishers Association have truly realized that the Internet is a blessing for them.
      They STILL fight it because:
      1) They still think in old terms: shipping of CDs, books hardcover and paperback etc. as a way to calculate sales.
      2) They still think regional agreements with publishers is essential to control price: which is why you see two prices in Playboy's back: USD and Canadian Dollar (twice as USD)
      3) They still hope the internet thingy goes away o

    • by Locklin (1074657)

      For the normal people like us, there's only one recourse: 's/STEAL THE BOOK/share a copy with someone who was able to purchase it/'.

      Sounds like a perfectly reasonable recourse to me. People in developing countries have been doing it for centuries (including the U.S. >100 years ago).

  • I got an email today from FW which is probably relevant to the timing of the implementation:

    Fictionwise -- Special Newsletter
    100% MicroPay Rebates -- J.R.R Tolkien's Lord of the Rings eBooks

    J.R.R. Tolkien's "The Lord of the Rings" - perhaps the greatest epic fantasy series of all time - is now available for the first time in eBook format!

    Now you can be thrilled by this legendary adventure again ... anytime ... anywhere. Read these Tolkien masterpieces on your iPhone, BlackBerry or mobile device today!

    For a

  • Homeland security would be interested in the magical technique they have for telling apart a US Citizen, a Legal Resident, and an Illegal Alien given they all have US mailing addresses, credit cards, an so on...

  • by nicc777 (614519)

    Wasn't the Internet supposed to break down physical barriers like distance etc.? Things like this really start to piss me off.

    I am also a non-US person and the hoops we need to jump to to get stuff is unreal. I don't get it either... If we buy stuff over the Net in the US, the producer of the goods/services still get their share, so why must I wait 1 or 2 years before the material is available in my country?

    O well - there will be a way to circumvent this shortly. I'll just add to my ever growing list :-)

  • Copyright, Trademark and Patent laws are all forms of property rights.
    That they are artificial property, as compared to real property (real estate), is interesting but otherwise essentially irrelevant.
    What matters is like all real property, these other property rights are national, not international, in scope.
    Copyright exists in one nation, and is created by an act of law and under the laws of that nation, alone.

    For residents of some other country, the copyrights reside with some other entity (which is to s

    • by Locklin (1074657)

      Nothing to see? It's an excellent, real example of broken copyright laws not only hindering the spread of knowledge to the developing world, but at the same time, arbitrarily restricting the income to authors and distributors.

      These are the kind of stories that can make non-/. types actually think critically about the usefulness of copyright.

  • Opportunity (Score:2, Informative)

    I also can't buy Bose headphones from Amazon, since Amazon.com won't ship to Europe, and Amazon.de doesn't sell them. (Didn't actually try Amazon.co.uk, but you get the point.) I can buy those headphones from local electronics shops though. I assume the reason that Amazon.com won't ship them is that Bose has distribution agreements with European companies, and Amazon.com didn't think it was worth the effort and/or expense to secure those distribution rights. (Although it would be nice if they would give

    • by pimpimpim (811140)
      Put otherwise: eReader can decide to do this as they wish. But they shouldn't be surprised if the inconvenience they give me make me take my money somewhere else.
    • if you see a product that has value, and is not available in some particular market, then it probably wouldn't be hard to set up a business, sign a distribution agreement, and start selling

      Probably wouldn't be hard? Fuck, I have to become a gorram businessman and secure startup funding every time I want to buy a book? Have you the brain worms!?

      I don't think region-locking has ANY place on the WORLD WIDE web. I would rather take all that business-starting effort and invest it in a DOS attack to kick those stupid companies off my precious internet. Enemies of freedom shouldn't be coddled.

  • So if you're living in the US on a work visa, you're still not allowed any e-book goodness? How do they verify that you're actually a citizen, and not some foreign ne'er-do-well with a US bank account/social security number/other credentials?

    • Not citizens, not even residents, just those currently withing those borders and/or in possession of a US-issued credit card.

      The /. incorrect titles and summary: Annoying as hell since 1997!

  • With attitude like this the only thing we - all other people on Earth - can do is download off the "Pirate Bay" and other sites like this. Region lockings and limitations like this one are insane, especially now with worl being interconnected. Someone, who thinks digital content can be limited to a teritorry is so detached from reality of Internet it is pathetic.

    And btw in case you haven't noticed there is much more people elsewhere than in the US - interesting that US companies fail to notice that. But
  • Several months ago when the Canadian dollar was at par with the American dollar Canadians started looking at the things they were buying and realizing (that for certain items) that they were paying way too much compared to their friends to the south.

    The two big things on the list were Magazines and books. Even when you took the old Canadian dollar value into account, it still didn't add up to the amount we Canadians were being charged. (I had even seen Canadian written books, published and produced in C
  • by tetranz (446973) on Monday April 20, 2009 @07:42AM (#27643709)

    I think you mean US resident, not US Citizen.

  • So, what about expat's, ie, US Citizens living abroad?

    Is there a way to access the "restricted content" from abroad, for such a person?

    PS When will the Internet cause all of these restrictions to evaporate, already?!?

    • When I lived in the UK I accessed US iTunes via my US-bank issued Mastercard. I know others that wasn't possible but I continued to do it from 2004-2007. Maybe it will be the same for this product.
  • by Sj0 (472011)

    Keep on refusing to sell to me, and I'll keep on pirating the content. I have no moral obligation to buy what you don't want to sell.

    Incidentally, I've never paid for an episode of The Daily Show, even though I was sitting with a credit card in my hand ready to buy a subscription on iTunes a few years ago.

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