International Day Against DRM (IDAD) - Save the Libraries! - December 8, 2023
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This year's annual day in protest of Digital Restrictions Management (DRM) will be on December 8, 2023. On IDAD, a global community of activists will defend a library's right to support their patrons -- and those libraries' right not to be abused by Digital Restrictions Management and vicious licensing agreements.
This year's campaign draws attention to the ways libraries, and by extension, their patrons, are mistreated by corporations like OverDrive, makers of the "Libby" app that have a near monopolistic control over digital lending in the United States. Services like OverDrive and Follet Destiny mandate "controlled digital lending" schemes, imposing artificial scarcity on a digital good. They also require monthly or annual fees in order to have the privilege of having a book or piece of media in circulation. Should the library struggle with paying its licensing fees, like the New York Public Library, their "access" is "rescinded."
There once was a time when you could donate a book to the library to give others in your community access to it. There once was a time when libraries owned the works that they provide to the public, rather than finding themselves trapped by unethical technology and predatory licensing fees. If we want to ensure that our cultural legacy lasts, we need to focus our attention on corporations like OverDrive, who make a living out of leeching on libraries, which are already underfunded. In this year's IDAD, we'll do our best to remedy this.
How to participate
Pledge not to use Libby, Follett Destiny, or similar apps, and let your local library know that you support them, not corporations.
Let us and the world know why libraries are important to you in a short video posted to social media. You can use the hashtag #DayAgainstDRM.
Challenge yourself to go a "Day without DRM," and refuse to engage with media peddled by Disney+, Amazon, Peacock, and others that don't respect your digital autonomy.
Are you an organization or project interested in supporting IDAD?
We're looking for vendors of DRM-free media, organizations that support the building of a DRM-free world, and those who believe in the mission of DbD to participate by offering sales, writing blog posts, organizing events, and sharing with your members about IDAD. Please contact us at email@example.com for more information.
Together, we can build a future without DRM.