So I've got a sick kid, and he wanted to listen to Ender's Game, by Orson Scott Card. I pop over to the Boston Public Library which has an extensive collection of audio books, and ho! I'm in luck. They have it and it's available. I check it out, click the Download button, it downloads, and then I get this:
Yeah, I had seen that the file was a WMA file but since it said iPod as well, I thought I might be able to do it, oh my gosh, FROM MY MAC. But no. Turns out Overdrive discriminates against you if you have a Mac. I love libraries, but BPL: this is terrible.
Frustrated, but as yet undaunted, I fire up Parallels, so I can run Windows, download a brand new version of the Overdrive Media Console for Windows, which presumably supports said file type. Sign into BPL again, and download the book again. I struggle for a bit because it wants to open it up in the Mac version of the console, even though we have already seen that that won't work.
Finally, I get it to open up in the Windows version of the Overdrive Media Console, and I get this:
Yeah, I couldn't read it either. All I can think is, boy, it's a good thing I have a kind of wide screen monitor. Can you believe that?
With some trepidation, I click OK. I go back to the Overdrive Media Console on Windows and, as instructed, click Tools > Windows > Windows Media Player Security Upgrade. I get another big, wide error:
I say OK again, even though it's practically impossible to read.
Yet another window pops up and tells me that more DRM security files are going to be sent to who knows where to keep track of this audio file. For pity's sake.
I say OK again. In for an inch, in for a mile. And get this for my troubles:
Now, if you believe there's a server somewhere handling this that has ever been available, I've got a bridge to sell you. It's ridiculous. Ridiculous that Overdrive and the BPL treat me like a thief, ridiculous that I can't borrow books from the library as a Mac user, ridiculous that Overdrive makes me update a program I downloaded today, makes me jump through various incomprehensible hoops to do so, wastes an hour of my time, and at the very end says, "Oh, too bad, we don't care enough to make the process actually work."
Overdrive, you do a terrible disservice to libraries and book lovers. BPL, I love you, and I have continually advocated paying more taxes that should go to support what you do, but Overdrive does not serve me and it makes you look terrible.