Today I called an internationally known Christian publishing house because I was having a problem. I was looking for a book that they published and no libraries in the Grand Rapids area own a copy, and no bookstores have a copy in stock (or on order). For Grand Rapids that is like saying the book does not exist- we are overflowing with Christian bookstores and Christian college libraries!
So I am on the phone with, let's say, Suzie. I explain to Suzie that I need said book and am willing to pay a premium price for it if she will email the PDF used for publishing. (Now I know that this is done because my friend Derek Baars gets books from publishers this way all the time.)
We go back and forth discussing this and she puts me on hold. She talks to the copyright people who are willing to do this if I have a good enough reason. I do not. We talk some more. I am put on hold. We talk some more.
Suzie tells me that she will overnight me the book for price plus $17 shipping. I am tempted, but no thanks. I know that the PDF can be sent and I can sign a waiver that says that it is for my personal use, etc. Suzie is not comfortable with that. We talk some more.
17 minutes pass and Suzie decides that I can have the PDF... but... they do not have access to it. If I want it I would have to call said agency that co-published the book.
I call said agency that co-published and within 2 minutes I have the book emailed to me. I did not have to talk to Suzie and did not need Suzie's permission and did not need to hear from their legal department or their copyright people.
Thanks for stealing 17 minutes of my life.