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Playstation 3 Video DRM Only Allows One Download

Soulskill posted more than 5 years ago | from the how-generous dept.

PlayStation (Games) 316

Nom du Keyboard points out an Ars Technica report that the Sony Video Store on the Playstation Network is running some rather restrictive DRM. When purchasing movies, users are allowed just one download — even if they delete the movie to make space and want to download it again on the same machine. A Sony representative told Ars that users could be issued an extra download as a "one-time courtesy" with help from customer support. Quoting: "When we're discussing a system that seems to release new hardware configurations every few months and a company that actively encourages you to swap hard drives yourself, it appears users are going to run into problems if they ever decide they want to switch out their hard drive or even upgrade into a larger system; the information on the back-up utility makes it clear that video content can't be moved over to new system, although new hard drives should be safe. Sony claims that the PS3 is operating on a 10-year timeline: is one extra download, which you need to contact customer service to apply for, good enough for the next decade?"

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316 comments

Oliver Twist anyone? (5, Funny)

MaXiMiUS (923393) | more than 5 years ago | (#25108977)

"Please, sir, can I have some more?"

Re:Oliver Twist anyone? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25109317)

How can a first post be modded Redundant? Thats like an anonymous post being modded 'insightful'.

Re:Oliver Twist anyone? (0, Redundant)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109605)

How can a first post be modded Redundant?

Um, maybe a Sony executive/stockholder has mod points? But note its mod is now "funny".

Thats like an anonymous post being modded 'insightful'

You post stands at 2, insightful. But why can't an anonymous post show insight? There are a lot of reasons for posting anonymously.

Rental only (5, Interesting)

Just Some Guy (3352) | more than 5 years ago | (#25108999)

As long as they clearly mark this as a rental, I'm OK with it. As soon as they describe it as a sale, then I think they're conducting felony fraud and should be prosecuted criminally.

Re:Rental only (4, Insightful)

Chaos Incarnate (772793) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109161)

So if you buy something from a store, and then throw it away, the store is obligated to give you another item?

Interesting.

Re:Rental only (3, Interesting)

Cyberax (705495) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109277)

If this item is broken, then yes they are required to replace it.

What happens if your PS3 stops working?

Re:Rental only (5, Insightful)

plague3106 (71849) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109465)

So if i scratch up my cd or dvd, I'm entitled to a new one? Interesting..

Re:Rental only (4, Insightful)

denis-The-menace (471988) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109627)

Depends, do you own the copy or did you license the copy.
-If you *own the copy* then you are screwed since you are allowed to do as you wish with the copy short of making copies of it. That includes trashing/destroying the disc.
-If you *license the copy* then you can get a replacement media copy or even copy another Good disc but keep the defective one as proof of license.

Re:Rental only (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25109631)

I AM entitled to make a backup copy of my cd or dvd in case it gets scratched in the future...

If this were to happen, I could then make a backup of the backup and ALWAYS have two redundant copies of my cd or dvd for all time. The "ask-customer-service-once" model does give an effective backup, but only once.

Re:Rental only (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25109289)

The only thing that is interesting is how badly you managed to miss the point...

Re:Rental only (4, Insightful)

Chyeld (713439) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109335)

If I purchase a copyrighted "something" at a store, I dang well expect that it would work on more than just the one machine I used it first in. If it's compatible, it should run in it.

I also expect that should I have to replace it more than once, the item still work.

Additionally, I expect that if someone is selling me something that restricts my rights as the purchaser under the cover of attempting to protect their own as the copyright holder, that those restrictions are reasonable and not simply in place as a surrogate method of forcing me to buy more copies of the item.

For the most part, the only thing DRM accomplishes is that, forcing the 'legitimate' consumer to purchase ever more copies of a work they already own copies.

Re:Rental only (5, Insightful)

thetartanavenger (1052920) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109401)

That's not the issue here, the circumstances don't match.. If you buy something from a store you get a hard copy of the cd/dvd. You break it, tough luck.

When it comes to pc's, it's often not us that break them, or you want to upgrade or you've ran out of space. With this method they force you to lose your purchases with no possible way to transfer them, back them up to some form of removable media (the normal way people create more space on their computer) or redownload them. If you can't back them up and you have no space you HAVE to delete them, they are giving you no choice in the matter. These situations are unavoidable with a pc and if you provide a download service you should at least either provide unlimited downloads of your material, or you should be able to back them up easily (and legally).

Re:Rental only (1)

doas777 (1138627) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109487)

if you can't backup the file with the utilities that you are locked in to using, then yes. Besides you still possess the license for that material. having the file or not has no implications on your rights under the licensing agreement.

you did not buy the file, you bought a license, and it is impossible to throw one of those away, except by breaching it's terms. BTW what does that have to do with calling a rental a sale being felonious fraud?

Re:Rental only (1)

vux984 (928602) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109611)

So if you buy something from a store, and then throw it away, the store is obligated to give you another item?

If I buy something from a store; for example, a CD, I expect it to work both in my car and in my home. In fact I expect it to work in my laptop too, and if I take it to a friends house and he wants to hear it I expect to work in his car/home and laptop too.

Their copyright should be toast (0, Troll)

rtfa-troll (1340807) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109175)

This is not okay even for rental. When you get a rental video, there's still a real physical video and often the video store ends up selling that off at discount. The most important thing about this is that they are breaking the trade which makes copyright acceptable. In return for their ability to restrict other people's right to copy they should be delivering works that people can keep forever. If they deliberately make that impossible they shouldn't have any right to control other people's copying.

Re:Their copyright should be toast (2, Informative)

PC and Sony Fanboy (1248258) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109333)

and often the video store ends up selling that off at discount.

.. We're not discussing that. We're discussing the fact that it *is* a rental, not the fact that the physical object get sold at a later point in time. Thanks for coming out, though.

Re:Their copyright should be toast (1)

rtfa-troll (1340807) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109467)

Well, everybody's allowed to discuss whatever you want, and don't let this post stop you from discussing the difficulties of geranium growing in the mountains of Afghanistan, but the grandparent and I are discussing whether it's "OK" if "they" "clearly mark this as a rental". I'm saying it's not "OK". Sony expects us to pay for protecting their business from unlicensed copying, but they aren't providing the social gains that are meant to be their part of the bargain. I guess if they made sure that all libraries had a non-restrictions managed version or something similar then it could be okay. I doubt they are doing that though.

Re:Rental only (5, Insightful)

Ethanol-fueled (1125189) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109291)

This is Sony we're talking about -- is this really a surprise?

If the content providers keep having their way then we'd be paying for media on a per-track, per-listen basis. Those ideas have been their wet dream even since before piracy was widespread.

That's my rationalization for reaching for the 'torrent, what's yours?

Re:Rental only (2, Interesting)

Goldberg's Pants (139800) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109477)

Well Sony are the makers of Securom, and also made a DRM for DVD's (ARCOS) that rendered the disks unplayable on their own devices. I bought a movie with ARCOS for my nephews and it wouldn't play. I had to take said DVD and make a rip of it purely so they could watch the movie I bought for them on their Sony DVD player.

So crap like this no longer surprises me and is why, despite being a huge Metal Gear and Gran Turismo fan, I will not be buying a PS3.

Re:Rental only (1)

Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109313)

As long as they clearly mark this as a rental, I'm OK with it. As soon as they describe it as a sale, then I think they're conducting felony fraud and should be prosecuted criminally.

According to the article, they do call it a "purchase" as in "purchased content."

Re:Rental only (0)

fermion (181285) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109345)

Just read. You buy a movie and download it. It is your responsibility, just like any other purchase, to keep up with it. That may mean that if you do not have a backup, and lost your machines, then you will lose your purchase. Just like if you car is stolen and you left you music in it.

I see no place how this is more restrictive than normal. I don't know any service in which one purchases content to be stores on you own media where a second download is allowed. Now, if one is not allowed to backup the content, or transfer it to another device, then that may be considered more restrictive than normal. But as it stands this is just par for the course for DRM.

Re:Rental only (4, Insightful)

Aranykai (1053846) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109481)

I don't know any service in which one purchases content to be stores on you own media where a second download is allowed. Now, if one is not allowed to backup the content, or transfer it to another device, then that may be considered more restrictive than normal.

The entire point of DRM content is that the content is restricted to approved playback devices. Allowing multiple downloads to the only approved device is not the same as allowing someone to download it willy-nilly onto fifty computers.

The point this article is making is the lack of options to re-obtain your content, as you are not allowed to backup the media, nor can you store it physically on any kind of medium other than the disk in your playstation.

Courtosy download? (4, Insightful)

Drakin020 (980931) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109001)

How kind of them to privilage us with an extra download for something we paid for.

It almost feel like your renting a product, but never owning it.

Re:Courtosy download? (1, Insightful)

RichardJenkins (1362463) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109319)

You pay for the right to download it. Once. To a system that you know is closed. Why would anyone expect Sony to allow their bandwidth to be re-used for free?

It's not like they're being anything other than upfront about it.

If you move to another system where you no longer have the movie in future: just buy it again. It will be cheaper (in terms of YOUR PRECIOUS TIME) than fiddling about with moving files from one machine to another.

*irony ends*

Re:Courtosy download? (1)

hardburn (141468) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109499)

I expect out of Sony what I believe my money is worth. Why does Sony expect me to buy something so hobbled when I'll almost certainly be able to buy the same thing in a format that isn't so deliberately broken?

Re:Courtosy download? (1)

Qzukk (229616) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109565)

YOUR PRECIOUS TIME

My time may be worth $80 an hour, but an hour of my indignation will run you $120.

Re:Courtosy download? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25109355)

This is why I keep writing to Blizzard to include spelling quizzes as part of quests. Oddly, they continue to ignore this very reasonable suggestion.

Apple do the same.. (3, Informative)

Channard (693317) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109019)

.. because once you've downloaded your music, you can't get it again unless you badger Apple. Couple that with the fact that iTunes doesn't officially support taking music off your iPod back onto iTunes and you've got a system that's a real pain in the arse.

Re:Apple do the same.. (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25109067)

Absolutely true.

But I can easily back up my music and video downloads to an external hard drive or DVD archive. When I want to restore them, I just load them back onto the machine.

For that matter, I can copy videos between my computers and still play them. It's true, those computers have to be "authorized" by Apple, up to a max of 5 computers (which I can reset/change each year). But I can still do it.

So Apple doesn't do *exactly* the same. It's DRM, and all DRM is bad. But Apple's doesn't leave quite the same taste in my mouth that Sony's does.

Re:Apple do the same.. (1)

Eg0Death (1282452) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109071)

You can burn your iTunes onto a CD, transfer them to an MP3 player, transfer them to other hard drives, etc. Not so with this.

Re:Apple do the same.. (1)

PC and Sony Fanboy (1248258) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109367)

actually, you can back this up the same way you back up iTunes purchases - you just have to record to video stream. It is exactly the same as copying an apple AAC file to cd, and then re-ripping it as .mp3, or copying it to another hard drive and having to authenticate it over there, too.

Re:Apple do the same.. (3, Insightful)

CrankyFool (680025) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109085)

Yes, I'm frankly surprised this is news, given that iTunes' similar behavior -- with a much greater user base -- doesn't seem to merit a peep.

Re:Apple do the same.. (4, Insightful)

MBGMorden (803437) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109347)

iTunes doesn't lock your files down to a single machine though - they lock them to an account which can follow you effectively forever. Between computers, between devices, etc. Your account always is good to play your files. This allows you the specific freedom of BACKING UP your information.

Now, don't get me wrong, I don't like Apple's DRM either, but it HAS been the least problematic I've seen. Amazon Unbox for Video for example lets you play a "purchased" file on 2 machines only, and it has a terrible little Windows service that runs in the background to "authorize" your playback with the mothership. If that service screws up then your media files simply aren't going to play (and I've just deleted the 3 episodes of Battlestar Galactica I bought from them after all the problems I had with it).

I think with Sony, the problem is that you CAN'T make a backup of the file. You can with Apple, and you can with non-DRM'd media. As a matter of fact, I'd be fine with it if they didn't allow redownloads AT ALL if they didn't include DRM. I don't expect the store to give me a new copy of a DVD that I sit on or leave in a hot car, so I don't expect a new copy of a file that I lost either. HOWEVER, I do want the ability to make backup copies of that data so that I can be secure in the knowledge that my entire movie or song collection isn't hinging on a single hard drive crash.

The problem ALL this hits though, is that it's getting too device specific. If I want to play a DVD I buy it. I've been through 3 TV's and about 5 DVD players since I started buying DVD's. Now, digital downloads are looking to be the next bid thing, but look at the current scene: Xbox360 sells movies and TV shows, but they play only on an Xbox360. Apple does the same, but they play only through your computer or an AppleTV. Sony is now doing the same, but they play only through a PS3. Amazon Unbox does it - and they play only through Windows computers or a compatible Tivo.

How many disjointed systems is it going to take for them to realize that this isn't going to work? If I buy a new awesome media player box I want it to play EVERYTHING. I don't want to have to switch devices over and over as I flip between different movies I purchased on various systems. These devices need to operate with a common format. The only way to make this all work long term is to kill DRM. A user needs to be able to "own" and move about their files as easily as they once shifted around their DVD discs or VHS cassettes.

Re:Apple do the same.. (2, Informative)

oahazmatt (868057) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109097)

Couple that with the fact that iTunes doesn't officially support taking music off your iPod back onto iTunes and you've got a system that's a real pain in the arse.

Haven't installed iTunes 7 yet, huh?

Re:Apple do the same.. (2, Informative)

nine-times (778537) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109223)

The main difference is that it's trivially easy to back up your own iTunes library. Especially so if you own a recent Mac, where you can get an external hard drive and use Time Machine. Also, iTunes will allow you to copy your iTunes-purchased music from your iPod to your computer, but it will essentially replace your existing iTunes library. That in addition to being allowed to copy your iTunes purchased music/video to 5 different computers.

Don't get me wrong-- I'm generally anti-DRM and would very much like to see Apple drop their DRM entirely. On the other hand, Sony has really done a worse job here.

Re:Apple do the same.. (1)

Xzzy (111297) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109369)

iTunes will even nag you every time you buy a song to back up the files, at least until you check the "don't nag me about this again" box.

I'm not defending DRM either, but to date, it seems like if you have to have DRM, Apple's done it better than anyone.

Well, maybe Valve. They've claimed if Steam ever shuts down they'll issue unlock codes for all the stuff you've purchased, which is a leg up on anyone else.

Re:Apple do the same.. (2, Insightful)

Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109387)

The main difference is that it's trivially easy to back up your own iTunes library.

From a customer-service perspective it seems to me that it would be even easier if Apple just supported re-downloads. Compare all the effort of each person individually backing up their shit versus the effort for apple to enable the feature and then support the occasional re-download.

Re:Apple do the same.. (1)

Colonel Korn (1258968) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109531)

.. because once you've downloaded your music, you can't get it again unless you badger Apple. Couple that with the fact that iTunes doesn't officially support taking music off your iPod back onto iTunes and you've got a system that's a real pain in the arse.

Amazon allows unlimited downloads of purchased music.

You'd have to be mental.... (4, Insightful)

Dr_Barnowl (709838) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109023)

I don't know what the prices are at the Sony Video Store - but if they are any substantial fraction of the cost of the physical media, then you should just buy the disc instead.

With the DRM on DVD a defeated minion of darkness, and BluRay certain to go the same way, the format with the most longevity, barring manufacturing defects, is a pressed ROM disc. You can be sure that you will be able to read, transcode, format-shift and enjoy these to your hearts content.

Not so for something that vanishes in a puff of virtual smoke when some vital component of your console goes "phut".

10 years? (1)

samsonov (581161) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109039)

I have had all three generations of PS boxes in less than ten years time. Seems a bit limiting... okay quite a bit.

itunes? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25109041)

how is this different from your little pet itunes? if you boycott sony for drm fraud you must boycott apple.

Oh my, is it? could it be? A frost post for lil me (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25109047)

OH YEAH BITCHES, A FROSTY POST

well, where should I begin...

I'd like to thank Taco for putting together this blog concentrator. He's been instrumental in providing a web 2.0 place for frost posts to be scattered.

I'd like to thank the Playstation 3 Video DRM, whatever the fuck that is, for being newsworthy enough for an article to be posted on....for me to fffrosttt.

I'd like to thank kdawson, the ambiguously gay pen name of Jeff Bates.

And last but not least, I'd like to thank the readers of slashdot for your continued bullshit and diatribes on Linux and open source and other pantloads of shit no one gives a flying rat fuck about.

peace out

How is this surprising? (1)

ivan256 (17499) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109061)

Look at the other services out there. Movies on the Xbox live service expire and disable themselves after two weeks (yes, I know, it's different for TV shows). With Netflix, you can't watch anymore after you stop paying the monthly fee.

This really isn't news. Media distribution companies are out of touch with how consumers want to purchase and use their products. We've known this forever. This article is just flamebait to get the PS3 and 360 fanboys at each other.

Re:How is this surprising? (4, Interesting)

MooseMuffin (799896) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109187)

Its news because not only is it DRM, but its poorly implemented. Steam and the 360 let you delete stuff you've bought and download it later. I can go to a friend's house, log in to my account on his xbox, and I'm able to download things I've bought.

The only reason this isn't really big news is because its something they can fix fairly easily.

Re:How is this surprising? (2, Informative)

ivan256 (17499) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109237)

Steam and the 360 let you delete stuff you've bought and download it later.

So does the PS3.... For everything but Movies. Which according the the Xbox live website is the same way it works on the 360. For movies.

Although at least Microsoft is kind enough to market them strictly as rentals.

Re:How is this surprising? (3, Informative)

Eg0Death (1282452) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109221)

I can't comment on the Xbox live service, but with Netflix you aren't BUYING a movie, you're paying to watch it (as part of the standard monthly fee). If you are not longer paying for the service, you can no longer view the Instant View movies. With this Sony service you're buying a digital-only copy that can't be moved and can only be downloaded one additional time.

Re:How is this surprising? (1)

dazedNconfuzed (154242) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109293)

With Netflix, you can't watch anymore after you stop paying the monthly fee.

With Netflix, you know you're RENTING the movie, and have to give back (i.e.: lose access to, returning DVDs and stopping any streaming media) any material they've loaned you after you stop paying the monthly fee. While you _are_ paying your fee, you can hang onto the material (keep the DVD, play streaming media) and watch it on ANY platform you like.

This in contrast with Sony SELLING the movie, but you can only download it to a single device which you will most likely need to erase long before the product's 10-year lifespan is up. Also in contrast with buying the same content on physical media, which you keep indefinitely beyond Sony's control, and can watch on any player anywhere anytime.

Do we really have to spell this out?

Less value for my money (5, Insightful)

Adrian Lopez (2615) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109077)

I intend to avoid downloadable content until it's at least as flexible as physical media. I want the ability to move my copy of a movie from machine to machine, and to lend it, give it or sell it to somebody else once I'm done with it. A one-time download is a sucker's deal.

Re:Less value for my money (1)

oldspewey (1303305) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109303)

Agree

I like the idea of having music and video on a media server in the home, and I like the idea of having MP3s that I can load onto a player when I'm about to go on a long flight. But I want to rip (in the format of my choosing) that stuff from a shiny disc that I can physically hold in my hands and store in a box in my basement.

Re:Less value for my money (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25109383)

And even then, with Sony's track record for updates toasting the system and requiring the drive be formatted [slashdot.org] , forget it. (They did it again with 2.42, but that never made Slashdot.) There's just no way I'm OK with one download for a PS3.

You, of course, can't backup these DRMed videos (or your DRMed save files!), so you're left with hoping that no PS3 update forces a reformat to restore functionality.

But hey, the updates are only forced if you intend to use the online components of the PS3, so if you never download anything, you won't have to worry about an update destroying your downloaded content.

Re:Less value for my money (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25109613)

You, of course, can't backup these DRMed videos...

Wrong. If you're so worried about it, move the files to an external USB drive (yes, the PS3 provides the option) and backup the files off of that. It's not rocket science.

Xbox 360 (-1, Troll)

Lord Apathy (584315) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109089)

Sounds like one more reason to buy and Xbox 360 to me. Of course just having the name Sony on it was enough of a reason also.

LOL, Loser (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25109147)

After Zonk effectively destroyed Slashdot's gaming section last year, pathetic retards like "Lord Apathy" are all that's left.

Sad, Slashdot use to be a fairly decent place for gamers.

Re:Xbox 360 (1)

spire3661 (1038968) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109287)

Whether you like or loathe sony, there is no denying the PS3 is an incredible piece of hardware. While its market positioning may not be the best (gaming console trying to be high end home theater jack of all trades), it is an outstandingly well engineered home entertainment device. Anyone that dares say its overpriced has no concept of value and cannot see the whole picture. Its high price is very well justified by its much broader level of functionality compared to the competition. Game politics aside, the machine itself is killer. Disclaimer: I own all 4 modern gaming systems, I regularly compare 360 to PS3 to PC on dual 24" 1980x1200 monitors, please save us some time dont attempt to undermine my credibility or call me a fanboy in this instance.

Re:Xbox 360 (1)

Cheeko (165493) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109461)

The perceived value is relative to what you want. I don't give 2 craps about Bluray or even downloadable video. I buy a gaming console for gaming, and possibly playing a DVD here and there.

With that said the PS3 is giant waste of money for me, because I'd be buying a ton of hardware I just don't need or want. Thats not value for me.

Value is a reasonable price for a device the matches the feature set I want as closely as possible. I'm not interested in shelling out more money for something I'll never use, even if that extra feature is cheep for the additional cost. Its still more money.

Re:Xbox 360 (1)

not already in use (972294) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109519)

You're exactly right. The PS3 is an amazing piece of hardware... for running folding@home and playing BluRays. Too bad it doesn't fare so well in the gaming department. Beside the fact that it has not proven to be technically superior in the sense that it has more impressive games than the Xbox 360, the controller is antiquated. The head of their ergonomics department should be fired. Microsoft got it right with the offset thumbsticks.

Re:Xbox 360 (1)

bri2000 (931484) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109455)

The 360 is just as bad. I recently bought an Elite to replace my failed and just out of warranty original Premium unit and discovered that you couldn't re-download purchased Live Arcade games or game add-on content so I'm still having to use my old 20GB HD with it while the 120GB drive which came with the Elite sits gathering dust in a drawer.

Treasury Bailout Package from the horse's mouth (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25109091)

Congress's bailout package will reward failed Wall Street companies instead of letting them crater and injecting money into solvent banks.

This is an important read for those who have money in banks and stocks, and who hope to make the US their home for the next few decades:
http://blogs.wsj.com/economics/2008/09/20/treasurys-financial-bailout-proposal-to-congress/ [wsj.com]

Re:Treasury Bailout Package from the horse's mouth (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25109283)

You forgot to mention that the $700 billion isn't the final total, it is a line of credit. Paulson can buy $700 billion from anyone he likes for whatever price, then sell it to whomever he wants for whatever price. He can do this as many times as he wants. Its essentially an epic money laundering scheme.

His actions can not be pursued in court or investigated by any government entity.

So STUPID! (4, Insightful)

SatanicPuppy (611928) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109111)

No one learns anything from Valve/Steam. I was against Steam initially, but it's seductive because it's just so damn easy. All I have to do is log in, and it brings my games to me.

The lesson there to be learned is, if DRM makes your life easier, then people are more willing to put up with it. But if it makes your life harder? If it exists to screw you out of what you've already bought? Screw that.

Until the content providers remember that their supposed job is to provide CONTENT, then they're doomed to a declining market share and consumer antipathy.

Re:So STUPID! (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25109377)

I was against Steam initially, but it's seductive because it's just so damn easy. All I have to do is log in, and it brings my games to me.

The nice thing with steam is that it is basically unlimited downloads/installs. Don't need to keep track of a disc or anything - just remember your username/password to Steam. You can even download the Steam client. And then all the games you've purchased on Steam are right there, ready to be (re)downloaded and (re)installed.

Very handy. It actually becomes more convenient, if you have a good Internet connection, to buy through Steam.

Of course there are lots of issues if you don't have working Internet...

Steam = DRM I can live with (2, Interesting)

billlava (1270394) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109381)

I, too, was initially opposed to Steam. I can deal with it now, and can even appreciate some of its benefits. I first got a Steam account so I could keep on playing old CS and TFC many years ago. Now, on the same Steam account I play TF2, BioShock, CSS, DoDS, on a newer PC. I really like the fact that I can still download and play ALL the old Valve games I ever owned (right back to HL, Blue Shift, etc...) on any computer I have now, or will have in the future. Now THAT'S content management that doesn't jack you out of something you bought!

Re:So STUPID! (1)

garnkelflax (1306647) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109415)

I agree completely on the seductive nature of Steam. I'm all for it now too, but I can see where my acceptance is balanced on a knife edge. The first time I am unable to reach my content I will be furious. But in Steam's/Valve's defense they have been very generous and supportive of their early purchasers. I originally purchased half life way back when, and once steam became a requirement all the other games like tfc, ricochet, blue shift, opposing force, and others immediately showed up in my games list. And then I purchased the retail boxed version of HL2 when it came out a few years ago. I recently purchased the orange box download through steam to get portal, episode 1, and episode 2. Since HL2 comes with the Orange box and I already had it, the interface presented the extra license as something I could gift, so I clicked the link to gift it to my son who also has a steam account. They could have just as easily made it a pain in the rear.

Re:So STUPID! (1)

IndustrialComplex (975015) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109511)

The ability to gift the games was a good feature, and if they implemented a method by which you could gift individual games (rather than your entire steam account) I would be 100% for Steam.

One thing that I greatly dislike regarding games is the publisher's insistance that you are purchasing a non-transferrable license. With physical media, there was little that they could do short of trying to limit installs by including phone-home code (which means I'd never purchase that game). So you could loan the disk to your friend so they could play the game for a bit. I know that I wouldn't have purchased the original HL had my friend not lent me his copy.

With downloaded games though, there seems to be this rule that they must be non-transferrable, and it is infuriating. Steam got away with it because they do provide a benefit to me (I've long since lost my original HL CDs), but if you could individually gift or loan games on their service, I'd be 100% behind them.

Re:So STUPID! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25109435)

What's wrong with Steam? I can play my games anywhere and I can let other people 'borrow' the games by just letting them use my login. I've never had any DRM issues with Steam.

Re:So STUPID! (2, Insightful)

nine-times (778537) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109469)

Yeah, I'm not a fan of DRM no matter what, but if you must have DRM, I think Steam is a pretty good model. As you mentioned, the DRM lets them makes it so they don't really have to worry about restricting downloads or copies. I broke down and bought the Orange Box on Steam, and it is kind of nice that I can have it installed on any machine I want, and be able to download it to additional machines at any time, the only restriction being that I have to sign in before I play it. That paired with assurances that they'll crack the DRM before they drop support or go under keeps me more or less satisfied.

On the other hand, I think part of the reason it works is because it's games. When I'm playing computer games, I'm generally in a relatively stationary situation. I usually use my desktop system, for example, rather than my laptop, because it has more power. Having to connect to Steam to play games might be a deal-breaker if I were in the habit of playing those games "on the go", or in places without internet access.

When it comes to music, and to a lesser degree movies, I do want access "on the go". So in some cases the Steam model might not work. But for my PS3, which sits in my living room all day long? Sure, why not?

Remember kids, digital downloads are the future! (4, Insightful)

Xugumad (39311) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109123)

DVDs are dying! Blu-Ray is going nowhere! Why would anyone buy a real physical disk when for almost as much money you could use your limited bandwith allowance downloading a copy which will last unti the hard drive, or the console dies. Oh, and you don't get the extras. Erm, and it's unclear what happens if something goes wrong with the download. Oh, yeah, and you can probably download about 10 before you have to delete one.

WTF?

Re:Remember kids, digital downloads are the future (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25109163)

It would be neat to purchase for example, the rights to movie content. You could either pay cheap for a limited disc, pay more for the movie over different mediums, or pay a much larger amount which would cover all media types, and potential special/director/ultimate editions down the road rather than paying more the same content over and over. Just seems like they want people to be repeat customers of the same downloads.

Re:Remember kids, digital downloads are the future (0, Redundant)

oGMo (379) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109577)

Blu-Ray is going nowhere!

If by "going nowhere" you mean "constantly getting new releases of everything, from remastered old videos to digitally-filmed new releases," then yes, Blu-Ray is "going nowhere". Personally I don't buy anything now unless it's BD. Anything less than HD looks like crap now.

(Hint: just because you don't have a player or never look for new content doesn't mean it doesn't exist, anymore than putting your hands over your eyes makes something go away.)

Yup, this sucks (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25109141)

I love my PS3 for the games. But I have never bought even one movie from them (did buy an episode for $2 before I found out about this suck).
I guess its ok for rentals though. But for buying media, I would rather stick to good old DVD's or BD disks.

Pretty Insane DRM (1)

ExtremePopcorn (1203842) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109173)

But from their point of view, anyone can log in to your account if you give them your info and download the movie if they don't restrict it. Not that I'm saying it's okay to be this selective, but I'm just saying they overreacted at first and it'll probably get better. After all, games have 5 downloads, I think. A good solution would be for only one PlayStation 3 to have these movies at a time. I'm surprised Sony hasn't think of that yet, seeing as since they control the system they have a lot more control over it than PC movie download services.

Sony is a media company and an electronics company (1)

dpilot (134227) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109177)

Sony is one of the few companies that does both media and electronics. There have been many questioning which branch of the company has more clout, and speculation that it would all revolve around DRM.

It appears that those questions have been answered.

Way to go, Sony. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25109181)

For the first time in my life I've got the money to at least consider owning every console in the current generation... and I'm just not getting sold. Sure, Nintendo suing Lik-Sang annoys me, if not enough to stop me from owning a Wii. But Sony...

Sony has actually managed to fuck up having me buy Final Fantasy. Really! Good job! Way to go! I'm not going to reward that Blu-Ray DRM garbage, and that's all there is to it. No. Not even used. (By the time FF13 hits I've got no goddamn proof it would even WORK used. Maybe it'll be tied to some garbage online account, and I'll get to reregister the game at an amazing $5.99 discount off retail. Who knows!)

I can't buy a 360, either, just because I've got no faith the damn thing will live out the warranty.

So here I sit, playing Super Mario Galaxy and waiting on Disgaea DS. Maybe gen-8 will work out better?

SONY? With DRM?? NOOOOOO!!!!! (4, Insightful)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109209)

Sony would NEVER do anything like that! [wikipedia.org]

Next you'll be telling me banks [uncyclopedia.org] are acting irresponsibly and the government [uncyclopedia.org] doesn't act in my interest!

1 Download OR ship out 1 DVD (1)

digitaldc (879047) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109213)

Okay, one download is fine as long as they offer an alternative of shipping you one DVD.

Otherwise, you haven't really bought anything.

Yikes. Just this weekend I upgraded my PS3 drive. (4, Informative)

Dr. Manhattan (29720) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109225)

I backed up everything to an old 10GB drive I had, and swapped out the drive. The restore failed - I got back a few non-DRM'd videos, and some game saves, but it lost network settings, the actual games (I'd better be able to re-download them, haven't tried yet), and the new 'Life With Playstation' thing. I haven't been tempted to download videos yet... and I probably won't, now. Certainly not until after I install Linux on it (one reason I bumped up the drive in the first place.)

Re:Yikes. Just this weekend I upgraded my PS3 driv (1)

dannycim (442761) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109513)

I upgraded my PS3 drive from 80 to 120, then 160, then 320 just the other day. Every time the backup & restore process restored everything; game saves, game data, images, songs, videos, and system settings, including network. The only thing it didn't copy (and I didn't expect it to) was the "Other OS" (Linux), but that's a quick re-install anyway.

Re:Yikes. Just this weekend I upgraded my PS3 driv (1)

Dr. Manhattan (29720) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109593)

Every time the backup & restore process restored everything

I'm not blaming Sony particularly, but I hadn't had problems with that hard drive before. Now, if I upgrade again, I'm going to need to make two backups, and hope at least one of them works.

TWO DOWNLOADS! (1)

doctor_no (214917) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109265)

I know Slashdot has become another trash site filled with sensationalism, but get your facts right at least. This is essentially the same thing as iTunes.

Its even on the site you linked to:

"you have one download, one redownload, and that's it."

http://arstechnica.com/news.ars/post/20080921-playstation-3-video-drm-two-strikes-and-youre-out.html [arstechnica.com]

Re:TWO DOWNLOADS! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25109473)

Except I can make a backup of my itunes music/videos and I can move it to another computer by transfering back to my computer. Not so with PS3.

Simple Solution (5, Insightful)

DaveV1.0 (203135) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109297)

Don't download movies from Sony.

No downloads means no profit which means Sony will rethink their policy.

I was a sony fan (2, Insightful)

Coraon (1080675) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109321)

I love the PS and the PS2...this is enough to get me to buy a Wii...congrats Sony you made one of your long time customers leave because your being stupid...keep it up.

This is not DRM (5, Informative)

mweather (1089505) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109327)

This isn't DRM. All this is is a limit on the number of times you can download the file. Even if the file had no DRM at all, you'd only be able to download it once. Get your terminology straight.

No surprise - its sony (1)

unity100 (970058) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109363)

they have tried to get away with anything including what they did with rootkits on cds and even swg screw up. If they are let to get away, they just do it.

Just stick with your PC (2, Insightful)

Dan667 (564390) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109379)

Sony vendor lock-in so they can do this stuff at their whim? Forget it. I will never own a console, they are just an over priced bad deal.

I just rented my first movie through the PSN Store (2, Insightful)

HiVizDiver (640486) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109397)

Yesterday I rented "The Usual Suspects" as an HD rental. It cost $4.50. I feel I got my money's worth, since it would have cost me at LEAST that in gas/time/rental price to go to the video store to rent it. It expires today at around 4:00 pm, after which I'll delete it (if it doesn't delete itself first). The rental is good for up to 14 days after you rent it, but once you play it the first time within that 14 day period, you can only play it within the next 24 hours after that. Just a heads up for anyone renting - they do tell you this before you click "Confirm" on the purchase, however, so I didn't feel "taken".

I will say, however, that this ONE download per purchased movie stuff is utter BS. Have they learned nothing from the Steam/Valve model?

But more damning, I think, is that the selection absolutely SUCKS. You could not cobble together a more random selection of (mostly) shitty movies/TV shows if you tried. It's really pathetic. There are some gems, but most of it is utter shit. I guess their target demographic are pubescent teens who think Wil Farrell is funny and "Step Brothers" should be on AFI's Top 100 list. There are a couple of Kubrick films (Eyes Wide Shut and A Clockwork Orange) which add a heavy weighted value to the selection, but still...

One download's enough for me (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25109489)

So, if I buy a DVD, and for whatever reason, I decide I don't have room for it in my collection and throw it away, I should be entitled to a free replacement disk from wherever I bought it if I decide I want it back? Only a retard would erase a file and assume it would be available again for free. It's insanely easy to back-up your PS3 hard drive.

Good (1)

frovingslosh (582462) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109497)

If people pay money to support DRM products, this is exactly what they deserve. Maybe if enough people pay enough for this kind of low quality junk and then the DRM gods take it away from them, they will finally learn to not buy into the scheme. As long as the studios can see a revenue stream from this kind of crippled product they are not likely to deal with their customers on a more reasonable basis. So "hats of to Sony" for trying to help show the consumer just how bad DRM can be if you buy into it.

Who cares! (4, Informative)

houbou (1097327) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109529)

Seriously, not to be flamebait, but I have a Wii, and I can download.. uh.. wait.. GAMES!! and, the beauty is, if I delete it, I can download it again, for free, anytime, as long as it is on my console only.

That's the type of DRM I can live with. I mean, sure I wish I could load up my SD card and bring it to my friend's place who also has a Wii, but hey, you know, let's face it, I understand Why Nintendo stops me from going on with my SD card from machine to machine, and it's ok.

Now I don't get to play movies on my Wii.. boo hoo.. like I care, that's why I have a DVD player anyways. Beside, if the Wii ever went defective and it was my sole means of watching a movie, I would be in effect pretty damn bored!

Now, The PS3 let's you download movies only 1 time. That's Gestapo like DRM for you uh? :)

But who would want to download a movie for the PS3 anyways? especially with that type of DRM?

Better off buying a program like AnyDVD-HD which also support Blue-Ray and simply rent a movie and make a copy if you wish it.

DRM makes people's life a living hell, it's why it's not working.

Strange (1)

Is0m0rph (819726) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109549)

The same company that lets users share their DLC with 5 other machines (for example 1 person buys Rock Band DLC and it can be downloaded to 5 other PS3s) restricts videos to 1 download. Makes sense.

It's one more battle in the Sony Civil War (0)

mr_mischief (456295) | more than 5 years ago | (#25109579)

The hardware and software folks want you to be able to do cool stuff. The content and media portion of the company wants to make extra sure you're not doing it with their stuff. Until Sony's supper-level management tells the content people to STFU, the hardware and software folks at Sony have no choice.

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