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Saturday, 8 May 2021

Restrictions on exporting highlights and annotations

Established vendors and publishers don't want their users exporting highlights. Some vendors - e.g., Kobo and Barnes & Noble - don't support the option to export anything from their devices (it is possible to add code to activate the hidden export feature on a Kobo device). Amazon has always supported the export of highlights and annotations. However, publishers have limited the number of highlights that can be exported with a purchased Kindle ebook - usually, the limit is set between 10% to 15% of the book's total content. Thankfully, there are no limitations with personal ebooks.

An option for proficient users to bypass this export limitation is to download/copy the ebook and remove the DRM. It is possible to copy a purchased book by connecting a Kindle to a PC via USB. Regarding downloading an ebook, Amazon provides a portal to manage content and devices that allow the download of ebooks (personal documents and purchased ones). After removing the DRM, the ebook can be sent to a Kindle device as a personal document. There should be no restriction on the number of highlights exported as a personal document. I haven't tried this method, so I can't vouch if it works. 

DRM restrictions show that the user doesn't own the ebook they purchase. They are merely provided with a license to access the content.

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