Wednesday, October 19, 2005
I Think This is Cool
Neil Gaiman was asked how he felt about people borrowing the MP3 of his latest book, Anansi Boys, from the library and keeping it on their iPod:
What a wonderful ethical question. I feel almost rabbinical pondering it. No, I don't believe you've broken any law. If you'd checked out the MP3 CD from your library you'd be expected to put it onto your iPod, after all. There's a weird sort of ethical fogginess, in that I suspect that part of the idea of libraries is that when you're done with something you return it, and of course once you have your MP3 on your computer and iPod you can keep it forever. But I think this is just one of those places where changes in technology move faster than the rules.And this is why Neil Gaiman is a very cool person.
If you're listening to it, and you've got an iPod or suchlike MP3 player, you're almost definitely going to listen to it on your iPod. That's how things are, and it's a good thing (it's why I got Harper Collins to release American Gods and Anansi Boys on MP3 CD, after all).
Probably wisest not to pull it off your iPod and give it to other people, though. Let them at least take it out of the library themselves.