Proposal: E-books and E-book Readers

Will this kind of questions be accepted?

3 Answers 3


On the one hand...

Rooting a device is a quasi-legal activity. If someone asked how jailbreak their subsidized Kindle to remove the ads, that question should be closed with a polite comment that they should just pay Amazon the fee they are asking. Frankly, it would be attracting the wrong crowd to encourage these sorts of questions.

...on the other hand.

My guess is that some of our best questions will involve asking our devices to do things they weren't explicitly designed to do. For instance, I'm curious if I can force my Kindle to index a new item or prevent the indexing process from running since it can lock up the device when I'm trying to use it. Most likely, the answers to these sorts of questions will involve rooting the device to change some settings. As long as the question doesn't explicitly call out doing anything of questionable legality, it isn't our job to enforce third-party licences.

  • 1
    It's the "on the other hand" kind of questions that I had in mind, to be honest. Asking how to root a device is a more technical question, leaving aside the legal part. But asking about certain aspects of advantages of a rooting device or maybe how to achieve some non-standard features should be different, imo
    – BBog
    Commented Oct 23, 2012 at 18:42
  • Strongly disagree that rooting a device is a quasi-legal activity. If I have bought a device, I have rights to do with it everything I want, including cooking it or putting in fire, as long as it doesn't put other people in danger.. If there are any restrictions, it means that device was never sold to me. Commented Dec 12, 2013 at 13:59
  • 1
    @Donaudampfschifffreizeitfahrt I understand your line of thinking - "I bought it; it's mine and I'll do what I want with it." But many devices run software with terms that you must agree to before using. These terms often include requirements to the tune of, "I will not reverse engineer, modify, or otherwise tamper with this software, and I understand that doing so ends my license to use said software." So.. can you do what you want? Absolutely. Do you have "rights" to do what you want? Ehhh...
    – Jake Reece
    Commented Apr 21, 2018 at 2:56

One more idea to this discussion is the fact that an e-reader is a hardware you buy, and as such, it should be up to you what you do with it.

A way to rephrase this should be:

If you buy a laptop with some operating system installed on it, would it be illegal to just wipe all that pre-installed thing and install (for instance) Linux or BSD instead.?

What would make an e-reader different than a laptop, for this matters?.


The best way to answer this question is to suggest a question related to rooting and see if the community votes it up or down.

If anyone can think of a better question than my suggestion of Will rooting my Kindle Fire prevent me from accessing my DRM protected books? I would be happy to consider voting it up. As it is though, I'm struggling to think of a rooting question which might be appropriate here.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .