From the New York Times,
Some of the largest book publishers in the world are stripping away the anticopying software on digital downloads of audio books.
The trend will allow consumers who download audio books to freely transfer these digital files between devices like their computers, iPods and cellphones — and conceivably share them with others. Dropping copying restrictions could also allow a variety of online retailers to start to sell audio book downloads.
The publishers hope this openness could spark renewed growth in the audio book business, which generated $923 million in sales last year, according to the Audio Publishers Association.
I happen to have a long commute, and am a huge fan of listening to audiobooks while driving to and from work. My local library provides audiobook downloads, but as these downloads are DRM'd, I have to burn them to a CD as neither my Zune or iPod supports the particular copy protection that is used. I am not a pirate, I do not share these audiobooks with friends or on any file sharing site... and I hate having to jump through hoops to experience an otherwise excellent service.
I STRONGLY support this move by the book publishers. I look forward to listening to many more of their books (legitimately purchased or downloaded from my library). 🙂