New Potter was online in 24h: The rules for information distibution have changed. There’s just no way to stop this.
Less than 24h after the book hit the shelves, it had been scanned in, run through optical character recognition software, proofread and posted. The Pottermaniacs who did the work coordinated their efforts with IRC channels and most of them never met.
The theory that Doctorow pushes is related to the fact that the publisher wouldn’t release the book electronically over piracy fears. He says that the bottom line is that piracy is going to happen no matter what you do, so they should have at least pushed the book into the electronic market to get money from the people who did want to pay for it, because forgoing the ebook market to “prevent piracy’ obviously didn’t work.
I don’t condone what these people did, but I’ll say it again: DRM will never work.