Breaking News (Harry Potter related)

Discussion in 'Current Events' started by mac-er, Jul 12, 2005.

  1. mac-er macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2003
    #1
    A Harry Potter book as been sold early!!!

    A judge in British Columbia has ordered the 14 people who bought it early to:
    1. Not copy it
    2. Not tell anyone about it
    3. Not sell it
    4. Not to read it

    And, they have to return it to the publisher, who will then return it...with signed by Rowling
     
  2. MongoTheGeek macrumors 68040

    MongoTheGeek

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    #2
    The forced return and not reading it I think are morally wrong. Perhaps illegal.
     
  3. Mr. Anderson Moderator emeritus

    Mr. Anderson

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    #3
    What if you paid in cash and you can't be traced? Credit cards would make it necessary to return it - but otherwise I can't see them getting the books back. Although the signed copy from Rowling isn't a bad thing - and then turn around and sell it on ebay :D

    Any way you look at it, they got lucky.

    D
     
  4. cube macrumors G4

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    May 10, 2004
    #4
    Also the "not tell". The people didn't sign any NDA. As long as they don't go violating the copyright, they have the right to tell.
     
  5. obeygiant macrumors 68040

    obeygiant

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    #5
    wow this IS news.

    i think the publishers beef should be with distributer, not the customers.
     
  6. AmigoMac macrumors 68020

    AmigoMac

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    #6
    If I were the buyer I would have it on a blog already! :cool:
    maybe would have scanned some pages and have them on BT :mad:

    :)
     
  7. mac-er thread starter macrumors 65816

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    #7
    The publisher did it the right way (for them).
    Since the judge ordered the buyers to not read it, not copy it, and return it, they have to, or they will be in contempt of court.
     
  8. cube macrumors G4

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    #8
    Who do you think called in a judge for such a fascist ruling? If it's sold, it's sold. The right thing would have been to sue the distributor for damages.
     
  9. Jaffa Cake macrumors Core

    Jaffa Cake

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    #9
    Hmm... reminds me of the copies of Tiger that got posted out early, only for Apple to try to get the lucky recipients to send them back – with little or no success.

    Maybe Apple should have offered to send them copies signed by Steve Jobs and they would have got some takers. :D
     
  10. mac 2005 macrumors 6502a

    mac 2005

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    #10
    The more I learn about the meaning of "fascism" vs. the connotation, the more I understand how it exists in our everyday lives. On the surface, this ruling does seem contrary to a free market economy -- books and CDs have been released before their intended date many, many times before.

    The media, for one, are allowed to view/read/listen to such materials for purposes of editorial review -- are they legally restricted from discussing them or revealing plot twists?

    Bizarre. Harry Potter installment 6 will sell a gazillion copies regardless of how much detail is revealed. It's almost as though the legal action were a cheap publicity stunt -- would the 14 people who were able to buy the book early really command enough of a global audience to influence even 1 sale?

    Think about that context, and the word "fascist" in this instance isn't so far-fetched.
     
  11. grapes911 Moderator emeritus

    grapes911

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    #11
    I steal your car and sell it. You want it back. "If it's sold, it's sold."

    I know this is an extreme example, but its on the same lines. The bookstore sold copies they legally had no right to sell at the present time. Thus the purchasers should be forced to give the books back. The bookstore should be (and probably will) be held accountable as well.
     
  12. mac 2005 macrumors 6502a

    mac 2005

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    #12
    I think it's a bit different. The books were the bookstore's to sell. Nothing was stolen. All the store did was violate a sales timing (aka "embargo") agreement.

    The sanction should be against the bookstore vs. the book owner. The publisher should simply say: Sorry, Bookstore X. Going forward, you will receive book titles on the day of their release until we can trust that you've learned your lesson.
     
  13. OryHara macrumors regular

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    San Bruno, CA
    #13
    the thing is, knowing some secret of the new book is only going to make me want to buy it more
     
  14. grapes911 Moderator emeritus

    grapes911

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    #14
    I feel that you are splitting hairs. Ownership vs embargo. Either way, I'm pretty sure they signed a contract saying they can't sell the books until the release day. They probably weren't even allowed to open the boxes. Thus they had no legal standing to sell the books. Much like a thief has no legal standing to sell the stolen car.

    I agree that they should go after the bookstore. That store will probably never receive a high-profile book from the publisher until after its release.
     
  15. taeclee99 macrumors 6502a

    taeclee99

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    #15
    At least the judge did not send a dementor after the perpetrator!!!!
     
  16. mpw Guest

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    Jun 18, 2004
    #16
    To split hairs further, the difference is the theif commited a crime whereas the the bookseller did not.

    Breach of contract between the bookseller and publisher doesn't make the buyers liable for anything as they have no way of knowing what was agreed between those parties.

    I'm amazed the Judge is able to order the buyers to do anything. Like someone said the publishers only recourse is going to be damages claimed for the breach of contract.
     
  17. mactastic macrumors 68040

    mactastic

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    #17
    I was reading somewhere that Bob Woodward's book on Deep Throat that was officially released a week or so ago was accidentally put out a week early by an unwitting book store employee and that a USAToday reporter just happened to be there to purchase it in the few hours that it was inadvertently put out. Not that Woodward had anything much to keep secret at that point, but the book was still leaked (and the contents published by a rival newspaper) and I don't remember hearing about any ramifications towards the distributer or the person who happened upon it and reported the contents.
     
  18. ham_man macrumors 68020

    ham_man

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  19. andiwm2003 macrumors 601

    andiwm2003

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    #19
    well, you can assume that everybody knows that the books shouldn't be out yet. so they intentionally bought something thats not supposed to be on the market and therefore supported something illegal.

    if they didn't know about the release date they still have illegally sold books.

    i guess its like stolen goods. you can't get ownership of stolen goods even if you didn't know.

    i think the publisher followed the law and he did everything to sweeten the deal for the buyers.

    so to me it looks like a happy ending.
     
  20. redAPPLE macrumors 68030

    redAPPLE

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    #20
    does this rule only count in the states?
     
  21. Don't panic macrumors 603

    Don't panic

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    #21
    it is utterly ridiculous that a judge would order that the books be returned without reading them. IF there was something illegal, it would be commited by the bookseller, not the buyers. if the editor wants it so bad, it should offer to re-buy at a price or with an offer the 14 people could not refuse or alternatively shut up.
    If it were me, unless I were asked VERY politely to keep the secret on, I would leake it to any possible forum in the world just for spite (and for free, of course).
     
  22. grapes911 Moderator emeritus

    grapes911

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    #22
    Probably only holds true in Canada.
     
  23. wdlove macrumors P6

    wdlove

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    #23
    Having it eventually returned after being signed by Rowling is a great deal though. It's the least that should be done since is isn't the purchasers fault.
     
  24. MongoTheGeek macrumors 68040

    MongoTheGeek

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    #24
    Judges can order anything thats not appealed :cool:

    I can see how the seller was wrong to sell the book, but it is hard to punish consumers who thought that they were buying legitimate merchandise from an established vendor. Additionally I am not sure that they did anything wrong. The books were not stolen, so there is no receiving of stolen merchandise. At best(worst?) its some copyright violation but a person reading the book themselves, is so far into the realm of fair use as to be laughable. They committed no crime except for a good faith mistake and there was negligible harm to the publisher.

    The more I think about this the more I see the point of the seller in ordering the books back.

    It doesn't mean that I think the ruling isn't Wrong.
     
  25. question fear macrumors 68020

    question fear

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    #25
    I think ordering people to return it is a bit extreme. But on the other hand, a family who purchased a copy from a store in ny that made that mistake was more than happy to return it in exchange for a special gift pack and autographed copy on saturday.

    Really, I think the bookseller is at fault, and I say this as a manager of a bookstore. IT IS THE NUMBER ONE RELEASE OF THE YEAR. ANYONE WHO DOES NOT KNOW WHEN THE BOOK COMES OUT AND/OR THE CONSEQUENCES FOR SELLING EARLY SHOULD BE FIRED. Sorry, but I had to get that off my chest. I mean, really. Also, the short-term sales from selling it early is nothing, when you consider the potential loss of not only the last harry potter book, but further scholastic punishment. Scholastic could easily withhold other books, send smaller shipments, not replenish on time, or just slap a store with a gigantic fine. As one warning from our corporate offices regarding harry potter said "If you break the street date, the consequences will be be beyond our power to help you."
     

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