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Microsoft Awarded Patent For Peer-To-Peer DRM

kdawson posted more than 4 years ago | from the in-it-for-the-royalties dept.

Microsoft 151

An anonymous reader writes "Music DRM might not be as dead as previously thought. InformationWeek reports that Microsoft has been awarded a digital-rights management patent for a distributed DRM system that works over peer-to-peer networks and uses encrypted public and private keys as the licensing mechanism. The author claims that patent number 7,594,275, entitled simply 'Digital rights management system,' is significant because, while centralized music stores like iTunes don't use DRM anymore, the Microsoft patent makes it possible that peer-to-peer networks could reemerge in the future as a viable, albeit protected, source of content."

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What about a patent (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29512675)

for first post@@@#$!!!!lh

peer-to-peer networks could reemerge in the future (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29512697)

...until the keys are cracked...

End software patents!!! (0, Troll)

rts008 (812749) | more than 4 years ago | (#29512705)

Let me be the first to say:
This sucks donkey balls!

Look on the bright side of it... (4, Insightful)

jonaskoelker (922170) | more than 4 years ago | (#29513037)

Let me be the first to say:
This sucks donkey balls!

On a more optimistic note, if this patent is enforced, nobody (except Microsoft) can make DRM'ed peer-to-peer networks---that is, you'll get less DRM.

Right? ;-)

Re:Look on the bright side of it... (2, Insightful)

Dekker3D (989692) | more than 4 years ago | (#29513189)

i'll tell you what people told me the last time i made this mistake: microsoft will just license it to everyone who wants it. for a hefty sum, of course. money for microsoft and new drm stuff for others.

nothing good about this, sorry man.

Re:Look on the bright side of it... (1)

ta bu shi da yu (687699) | more than 4 years ago | (#29513389)

If it wasn't patented then what would stop someone else from implementing it? No patent != No implementation.

Re:End software patents!!! (1)

duguk (589689) | more than 4 years ago | (#29513075)

Correction:

This sucks eDonkeys balls!

Re:End software patents!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29513261)

Who the hell modded this troll?

Software Patents are the worst thing to ever come out of the patent system.

Re:End software patents!!! (1)

digitig (1056110) | more than 4 years ago | (#29513471)

Maybe the mods don't think that sucking donkey balls [209.85.229.132] is bad? (Search the page for "Specialty Foods" -- work safe)

Re:End software patents!!! (2, Funny)

V!NCENT (1105021) | more than 4 years ago | (#29513763)

Well... it sure as hell won't be a patent that Linux will ever infringe on...

idiots (5, Interesting)

Tom (822) | more than 4 years ago | (#29512709)

"embrace" and all that?

Look:

it possible that peer-to-peer networks could reemerge in the future as a viable, albeit protected, source of content."

re-emerge? they're already here, and not going away
viable? check, they are today
source of content? check, massively

protected? who wants that? There's no demand on the customer side. Unprotected will always win. Heck, I've downloaded cracks for games that I bought and I'm sure if I were to ask for a show of hands, it would be huge.

How about making content more convenient instead of more troublesome? Maybe then you'd stand a chance, you know?

Question (1)

Andorin (1624303) | more than 4 years ago | (#29512729)

If DRM didn't work for music, why on Earth does Microsoft think it will work for p2p software? Another question: If we have a DRM-free p2p protocol like BitTorrent, why on Earth does Microsoft think that people are going to flock to their proprietary, restricted protocol?

Re:Question (3, Insightful)

Tom (822) | more than 4 years ago | (#29512765)

Because so far, they've been very successul in forcing expensive shit down people's throats while free alternatives were available.

Except that they still haven't adopted for a world with Internet. :-)

Re:Question (0)

Hurricane78 (562437) | more than 4 years ago | (#29512945)

You forgot, that the actual number of privately visibly bought Microsoft products is close to zero.
People either bought it with their computer, or it's bought in a company with a PHB management.

I mean, I have only twice ever heard of someone buying MS software. Once, when someone bought Vista. I ended the friendship, because he thought it would be the greatest OS, and that MS is a nice company. And the other time, it was some crazy beloved employee of the boss, who hat way too much money, and bought every software ever. Even Linux and other open source stuff. He had 4 mobile phones always with him, and even more at home. Needles to say, he was... *cuckoo*.

Everyone else pulls the stuff off a torrent net, or asks a friend to do it.

So actually they are not as successful as you make it sound. (Still too much though.)

Re:Question (5, Insightful)

tsa (15680) | more than 4 years ago | (#29512979)

I never heard of anyone ending a friendship over an operating system. I'm glad I don't have you as a friend.

Re:Question (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29513091)

Wow, why did you do that breakup in public?

Re:Question (0)

Thanshin (1188877) | more than 4 years ago | (#29513185)

I never heard of anyone ending a friendship over an operating system. I'm glad I don't have you as a friend.

I never heard of anyone not wanting to start a friendship over someone else's ending a different friendship over an operating system. I'm glad none of you has the other one as a friend, though it wouldn't last long, anyway.

Re:Question (1)

cmdr_tofu (826352) | more than 4 years ago | (#29513559)

I have never heard of anyone commenting the possibility of friendship on hearing of someone not wanting to start a friendship over someone else's ending a different friendship over an operating system. Sorry I wanted to play too!

Re:Question (1)

maxume (22995) | more than 4 years ago | (#29513627)

Once, I ate a bug. It wasn't really my fault, it flew into my mouth when I was talking, and when I coughed, I accidentally swallowed it.

Re:Question (1)

tsa (15680) | more than 4 years ago | (#29513741)

So now you're buggy!

Re:Question (1)

Runaway1956 (1322357) | more than 4 years ago | (#29514197)

Open ports are always a bad idea. Some people lose money due to open ports, some people get pregnant due to opening the wrong port - you just got a bug this time. Be careful.

Re:Question (1)

kurt555gs (309278) | more than 4 years ago | (#29514001)

I don't help friends with computer problems on Windows machines any more, and it has strained some of my friendships. I get calls that their computer is lousy with trojans and viruses and my NEW answer it to switch to Ubuntu, and I'll help. Helping a Windows user is like giving a crack head $10 bux. The same problem is only going to happen again. It is a waste of both of our time. I have found that it is actually a good test of friendship. They call me because they think I know "something about computers". When I tell them what I would do, they decide if they actually trust my judgment and load Linux, or they don't and just wanted some one to enable their mistake for free.

Re:Question (1)

tsa (15680) | more than 4 years ago | (#29514177)

I just tell them I know nothing about Windows, because I haven't run Windows for anything but games since 1996. That usullally helps.

Re:Question (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29514085)

I have. Childish, really.

Re:Question (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29512985)

You forgot, that the actual number of privately visibly bought Microsoft products is close to zero.

Even if you round XBoxes down to zero, it's still orders of magnitude more than any company who spends money on Linux.

Oh, and slashdot is too collectively dumb to understand a patent is not necessarily a product that's being contemplated.

Re:Question (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29512995)

And the other time, it was some crazy beloved employee of the boss, who hat way too much money, and bought every software ever. Even Linux and other open source stuff. He had 4 mobile phones always with him, and even more at home. Needles to say, he was... *cuckoo*.

Sounds more he was a drug-dealer with wads of unlaundered money.

Re:Question (2, Funny)

ciderVisor (1318765) | more than 4 years ago | (#29513731)

Needles to say, he was... *cuckoo*.M/quote>

Sounds more he was a drug-dealer with wads of unlaundered money.

Maybe that would account for the needles.

Is it something in the water? (4, Informative)

westlake (615356) | more than 4 years ago | (#29513391)

I mean, I have only twice ever heard of someone buying MS software. Once, when someone bought Vista. I ended the friendship, because he thought it would be the greatest OS, and that MS is a nice company.

1 Open Amazon.com.
2 Search for software best sellers.
3 Case closed.
 

Re:Question (3, Interesting)

thejynxed (831517) | more than 4 years ago | (#29513749)

You need to get out of your mother's basement more often.

I -always- purchase retail Windows. Why? Because OEM versions can't legally be installed on more than one original system, making it totally useless for those of us who build our own computers. I want to be able to install it on my machine, and when I build a new one to replace the old one, I want to be able to transfer the license over to the new machine.

I thought this was quite common? (Completely ignoring pirated installs here - it isn't worth the bother to pirate Windows anymore).

Re:Question (1)

IBBoard (1128019) | more than 4 years ago | (#29512845)

If we have a DRM-free p2p protocol like BitTorrent, why on Earth does Microsoft think that people are going to flock to their proprietary, restricted protocol?

ISPs.

Or, more specifically, if Microsoft can make this completely different in packet appearance to "open" protocols like BitTorrent then the ISPs could very well end up throttling BitTorrent back to nothing (under the flawed argument of "pirated content" - Linux uses BitTorrent legitimately, you know) and leave the DRMed version running a full speed. It would in no way be under pressure from corporate lobby groups and music labels who want to blanket ban anything that they don't control, of course, and would purely be because "our customers feel secure with the additional 'protection'".

Re:Question (1)

bami (1376931) | more than 4 years ago | (#29513017)

ISP's have no reason to listen to music industry lobbiests. They want to keep the maximum amount of money rolling in while spending the least on the actual infrastructure. Bittorrent, usenet and other P2P services consume a lot of bandwidth, with a relative small fraction of the subscribers using it (Pretty much the 20% of the users generating 80% of the traffic 'law'). They decrease the load on the network by throttling those users.

Other P2P networks also give network problems (lots of packages flooding the backbones), so they throttle those as well. Microsoft should be ready to pay a lot to not let their DRM'd P2P channels throttled.

Re:Question (1)

IBBoard (1128019) | more than 4 years ago | (#29513441)

Music lobbiests to ISPs is likely to be indirect. The lobbiests lobby the government that "all file sharing is illegal" and "BitTorrent is illegal", the government doesn't have a clue and follows the line, the government legislates against "illegal file sharing such as BitTorrent", Microsoft then says "ours is okay, because we have DRM", the government puts in an exception for "controlled and approved P2P" and everyone at a large corporation cheers.

Yes, the ISPs want to cut the use of their network by removing people's huge use of P2P anyway (and if it is illegal downloads then that's fair enough), but the music lobbyists are already getting to the point of dictating to the ISPs with the recent suggestions of ISPs doing the monitoring for them.

Re:Question (1)

AnalPerfume (1356177) | more than 4 years ago | (#29513265)

You've forgotten to take into account that the MS board are living in the 90's. They missed the news the rest of us saw about IT evolving beyond them. They still believe they are the top dog who can do whatever they want and people will swallow it.

Re:idiots (2, Insightful)

Shikaku (1129753) | more than 4 years ago | (#29512741)

Heck, I've downloaded cracks for games that I bought and I'm sure if I were to ask for a show of hands, it would be huge.

*Raises hand*

Needs slashdot poll. And a citation too, but a scientific poll would be nice too.

Re:idiots (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29512935)

*Raises hand*

Re:idiots (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29513099)

98% of the people here only pirate for some *elaborately justified reason*, so don't bother.

(Seriously for all the talk of P2P here none of the tiny nerdballs on this site can admit to doing it just for the hellavit.)

Re:idiots (2, Insightful)

Tom (822) | more than 4 years ago | (#29513193)

People usually do things for reasons, you know? :-)

We all have our reasons, and if anywhere then you'll find the "because I can" quite an ok reason among IT people. Who here has not spent several hours writing a script to automate a process that takes a few seconds each time, and thus will not recoup the invested effort in your lifetime? :-)

Re:idiots (0, Redundant)

master5o1 (1068594) | more than 4 years ago | (#29513861)

i do things for the lulz...

Re:idiots (1)

MadnessASAP (1052274) | more than 4 years ago | (#29513343)

I admited to doing it for the "hallavit" a few months ago, I'll even do it again. I download Music, Movies and Games because I want to and I don't give a damn what anybody has to say.

Also I have much better things to spend the $70 there charging for some games these days like hookers, drugs and alcohol. Also I do try to give smaller indie developers my money.

Re:idiots (1)

Runaway1956 (1322357) | more than 4 years ago | (#29514299)

I pirate anything and everything that catches my eye. Happy? It makes me feel good. I feel smarter than the corporate bobbing heads, because I can do what they forbid me to do. I pirate stuff that I have no use for, just to see what makes it tick. I don't need or want Windows 7, but I'm testing it anyway, and testing the cracks as well. Why? Just because. I don't NEED a justification!!

That said, the price attached to Microsoft software is extortionate, exorbitant, and unjustifiable by anyone other than a diehard corporate tool.

Re:idiots (1)

Ed Avis (5917) | more than 4 years ago | (#29512939)

Let's get one thing straight: a software patent, granted to Microsoft or anyone else, does not 'make it possible'. People are quite able to implement computer systems without getting a patent first. If anything, having software patents covering an idea makes it less likely to happen. (If the swpats are not really enforceable, then their effect is smaller, but they can still be used to harass.)

Re:idiots (1)

Imrik (148191) | more than 4 years ago | (#29513633)

Until pressure is put on the ISPs to ban use of any other P2P protocols because there's one that can be used for all the legitimate content.

Re:idiots (4, Interesting)

Tynin (634655) | more than 4 years ago | (#29512999)

Maybe this is what you were getting at with your

"embrace" and all that?

but perhaps they are getting a patent on this in order for them to bring suit against any other bittorrent client that uses encryption, effectively making them to remove the encryption "feature" or face imminent pestering by a small horde of MS lawyers. Sure, they couldn't do much, at first to developers in other countries. But as the Pirate Bay trial has shown us, other(and more over time) countries tend to be making pro-IP choices. Thankfully, MS hasn't gone all RIAA on the world of software on a grandma by grandma basis... yet. But who knows, maybe they have a serious, long term, view(war) on the nature of how bittorrent and other p2p software will no doubt develop. So perhaps they are seriously going the road of the 3 E's yet again.

Getting the traffic your client makes to be encrypted, especially now p2p is so prevalent, simply will become a good idea if net neutrality doesn't come about. Or even just to finally flood the internet with so much encrypted traffic to give a big middle finger to all the intelligence (and no doubt ad) agencies of the world trying to read what we do and profile us on our own tax dollars.

I am kind of concerned with this development, but I guess it is just one concern on a pile of many. We really need to do something about software patents...

OK, no more to drink tonight... to paranoid ;-)

::refits tin foil hat::

How about patents in general? (1)

Lorien_the_first_one (1178397) | more than 4 years ago | (#29513743)

It seems that most people stop at software patents. But like the killer weed in the other article posted today, the assumption that patents are good will die hard. To do something about just software patents will only do minor damage as the lawyers will try to find some other way to keep software patents around without actually calling them that.

Better to do away with patents altogether.

Re:idiots (1)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 4 years ago | (#29514465)

Heck, I've downloaded cracks for games that I bought

Proving once again that DRM only hurts paying customers. It's pretty damned stupid of any company to reduce useability and value for your paying customers who would be better off just pirating it. It's backwards. Add value for paying customers that the pirates can't have, and then stop worrying about the damned pirates.

We are in this economic mess because today's businesspeople are greedy morons.

DRM Keys (3, Insightful)

EnigmaticSource (649695) | more than 4 years ago | (#29512727)

Perhaps I missed this in the TFA, but how exactly do they plan on actually releasing the keys? The whole point of DRM is to keep the keys out of your reach. I cannot think of a single, viable way to hide the key exchange without some black-box single point of distribution. Sure you can distribute the encrypted content via P2P... but unless the keys are decentralized as well... calling it a P2P system is just a touch disingenuous.

The key-servers still will represent a single point of failure, and a single point of ownership. Now we'll just pay for most of the bandwidth instead of them.

Re:DRM Keys (4, Interesting)

Tom (822) | more than 4 years ago | (#29512757)

Didn't RTFA either, but there are several distributed key systems where you can send a key to X people and if Y of them (with Y=X, and it can be a specific number) come together, they can decrypt. Something like that could work in a P2P system where you could have several distributed points of authority instead of one, none of them holds "the key", and some of them can go down and you can still assemble the key from the remaining ones.

Re:DRM Keys (1)

EnigmaticSource (649695) | more than 4 years ago | (#29512771)

Yes, I am familiar with that idea... the point however is access control. How do you decide the X lucky recipients of your partial key? How do you assume they are trustworthy? Then again, if you're not watching the logs, how to you know they aren't cheating the system, and trying to assemble the full key without your permission?

The whole point of DRM is to give permission when you wish. Any system that allows someone to skip asking permission, and later beg forgiveness is broken. In that same vein, any DRM system gives you the keys at some point, and says "do not unlock this door"; therefore it always fails, even if we use it simply because it's easier to ask then to beg permission.

Re:DRM Keys (1)

Tom (822) | more than 4 years ago | (#29513227)

I can think of several cryptographic approaches, depending on what exactly it is you want.

You could combine distributed keys with a one-time key system, which would of course require additional DRM on the client side, but it would solve the "secret assembly" problem.

You could set up a network of competing key holder notes, who are paid (by the consumer, of course) for their key parts. Since the key parts have value in this system, it would be irrational for them to share them with the competitors.

It would be possible to use a distributed anonymous system where no key holder knows who the other key holders are, but the key can be assembled on request. A variant of the cocain protocol comes to mind, but there are certainly other options.

Of course, I'm sure DRM fanatics are already trying to figure out quantum cryptography. After all, it provides them "for free" with their holy grail: A key that self-destructs when you view it. :-)

Re:DRM Keys (1)

Tynin (634655) | more than 4 years ago | (#29513255)

How do you decide the X lucky recipients of your partial key?

It seems to me that if you have an install base as large as Microsoft has, round robin will easily be enough redundancy without over thinking the problem.

How do you assume they are trustworthy?

Because it would be trivial to write in some sanity check on and against the client that could upload encrypted results to a server should the client disconnect in whatever way you are seeming to think is unreasonable. And to clarify server, should it be assumed that it could be a single point of failure, it shouldn't be. Between DNS and (even geographic) load balancers it too is trivial to mitigate any single point of failure risk.

Then again, if you're not watching the logs, how to you know they aren't cheating the system, and trying to assemble the full key without your permission?

The whole point of DRM is to give permission when you wish. Any system that allows someone to skip asking permission, and later beg forgiveness is broken. In that same vein, any DRM system gives you the keys at some point, and says "do not unlock this door"; therefore it always fails, even if we use it simply because it's easier to ask then to beg permission.

This part, I completely agree with you. Anything made by man, can be unmade by man. But it will keep a significant percentage of their customers in line and continuing to pay for legit products if only as a chilling factor effect. Then they could send cease and desist letters that could later be used in court, or the usual BSA business audit to bring your companies licenses up to compliance, depending on how they go with this.

Re:DRM Keys (2, Insightful)

IBBoard (1128019) | more than 4 years ago | (#29512819)

And, of course, that kind of key system isn't going to suffer from the "insufficient seeders" problem at all :D

Re:DRM Keys (1)

Tom (822) | more than 4 years ago | (#29513199)

Sometimes, I hate HTML.

Of course it has to be Y <= X - aka Y less than or equal to X. That's the whole point. With Y=X that would a trivial.

Re:DRM Keys (1)

Okind (556066) | more than 4 years ago | (#29512821)

"Now we'll just pay for most of the bandwidth instead of them."

Exactly. And I'm not paying the distribution costs for someone else's commercial enterprise.
On top of that, your ISP may even cut you off (do your ISP's general conditions say the connection is not to be used for commercial purposes?)

So let me get this straight... (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29512739)

Up until this point I have two ways of downloading content: Quick and easy from a dedicated server, but DRMed, or slowly and unreliably from peer-to-peer networks, but DRM-free.

So now Microsoft kindly offers me a service that has all the slowness and unreliability that peer-to-peer networks, while keeping all the restrictions of DRM? Brilliant!

Re:So let me get this straight... (1)

vxvxvxvx (745287) | more than 4 years ago | (#29512911)

Seems to be right. Kind of like how WOW uses p2p for the distribution of their game updates. By pushing the hosting of software from their own servers onto the customers computer MS would be able to reduce it's bandwidth requirements and hence costs. In an ideal world this would result in cheaper software.

Re:So let me get this straight... (1)

Thanshin (1188877) | more than 4 years ago | (#29513201)

In an ideal world this would result in cheaper software.

Never forget that in an ideal world the entire DRM scheme wouldn't exist so its chance of lowering software prices would be, and is, zero.

Re:So let me get this straight... (2, Insightful)

pearl298 (1585049) | more than 4 years ago | (#29512957)

I find that downloading Ubuntu releases via BitTorrent to be about 5X faster than FTP or HTTP downloads!

Much slower for something rare like the 1964 Dr. Who TV series, but hey ...

Re:So let me get this straight... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29513589)

Much slower for something rare like the 1964 Dr. Who TV series, but hey ...

Please seed episodes 4-5 of "The Reign of Terror".

filed years ago (4, Interesting)

QuantumG (50515) | more than 4 years ago | (#29512745)

Are blog drooling morons not aware that patents take YEARS to go from filing to accept to grant? You can't tell anything about a company's strategic direction from their patent portfolio. Engineers get bribes for filing, and lawyers get paychecks, and that's about all the motivation needed to file a patent - any old shit will do.

Re:filed years ago (1)

Stratoukos (1446161) | more than 4 years ago | (#29513307)

Exactly. Add to this the fact that companies like Microsoft have a shitload of patents just to be covered, even if it's not in their plans to use whatever is covered in the patent. So even if Microsoft is granted the patent don't expect MS Napster soon.

Re:filed years ago (1)

icebraining (1313345) | more than 4 years ago | (#29513925)

Actually, if you had RTFA, you would have seen the second paragraph:

The patent, number 7,594,275, is entitled simply, "Digital rights management system." Granted today (Sept. 22), it was filed in October, 2003, which undercuts the implication in my introduction, about why anyone would bother at this late date.

Easy bypass (1)

iCantSpell (1162581) | more than 4 years ago | (#29512747)

Write a client that ignores the DRM.

I wonder how much money they spent on developing that POS.

Re:Easy bypass (1)

mftb (1522365) | more than 4 years ago | (#29512815)

Gread idea! And what do you propose is done once the encrypted files are downloaded? Bruteforce a key?

Re:Easy bypass (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29512893)

Decrypt them.

In regular encryption, you have A transmitting a message to B, so that only B can read it, and C can not.

With DRM, B and C is the same person. It simply cannot work.

DRM can be made hard to crack by doing it in hardware, but it still only takes a dedicated electronics student with access to an electron microscope to crack. However, doing it in hardware may work for consoles and satellite receivers. It won't work in a PC environment.

Re:Easy bypass (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29512903)

Yea, because they definitely won't even be giving keys to those people who want to buy it.

Bottom line: You cannot give someone DRM controlled content as well as the means to play it, however obfuscated that means may be, and expect the DRM to hold. It's just not possible.

Re:Easy bypass (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29513239)

Or alternately do DRM like Wal-mart used to, and include what is essentially a kill switch dependent on external servers - of course such large scale deployment would probably be liable to a class-action as it would probably be considered unconstitutional since it would mean material that can never enter the public domain, which the copyright laws explicitly were written to enrich.

Re:Easy bypass (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29513437)

Gread idea! And what do you propose is done once the encrypted files are downloaded? Bruteforce a key?

Use brute@home!

Simple question (5, Insightful)

dascandy (869781) | more than 4 years ago | (#29512767)

Do you want me to have the content or not?

If you want me to have the content, you can't make me unhave the content.
If you don't want me to have the content, *just sod off already*.

There's no place for DRM in the world. It's fundamentally flawed at its principles.

Re:Simple question (5, Interesting)

IBBoard (1128019) | more than 4 years ago | (#29512851)

There's no place for DRM in the world. It's fundamentally flawed at its principles.

Just to play devil's advocate, there is a place for DRM in the world, just not in the consumer space. While I hate DRM on my music/games (especially since I use Linux and other alternate devices) it could be suitably applied on corporate documents to enforce access controls. In that situation it could still be cracked, but you've then got a very obvious and often quite large legal entity to point the finger at and sue for breach of confidence or contract or whatever, which means that they're far less likely to crack it (plus you're likely to trust them to some degree anyway, since you have a business relationship with them). For "B2B" situations it would provide extra protection on top of a contract that would stop accidental leaks (or at least make the leaked document less usable)

Re:Simple question (1)

ThirdPrize (938147) | more than 4 years ago | (#29513393)

Precisely.

Re:Simple question (1)

lavaboy (21282) | more than 4 years ago | (#29513507)

yeah, that'll work. I can just see the conversations between the Vendors and the CIOs...

V: We have this new DRM that will protect your content from unauthorized access.
C: Really? How's that work?
V: We use the new <suspiciously vague but vaguely exciting technology name> technology!
C: Cool! And this is all free, right?
V:...
V: Actually, it will cost <fantastically high number> of <appropriate currency>...
C: ...
V: And we will of course have to update everything, and redesign most of your existing infrastructure over the course of the next <unfeasibly long period of time> ...
C: ...
V: It's really cool, though! It's got <suspiciously vague but vaguely exciting technology name> technology!
C: Oh. Then, No.
V: ...
C: Ok, moving right along, let's talk about that exciting new Word Version Licensing program...

Re:Simple question (1)

zwei2stein (782480) | more than 4 years ago | (#29513919)

Which means that is can work as whistleblower stomp:

Classical example against DRM is whistleblower leaking documents concerning illegal/unethical stuff happening inside company. DRMed document would be unreadable for outsiders, requiring DRM-breaking and if DRM system supports it, document could be remotely nuked.

This scenario is definitely not favorable for society. I for one would consider music/games DRM much better - their content, their terms, you do not really need to have access to it.

But once it starts to let people get away with illegal/unethical stuff ...

Thank you Microsoft! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29512787)

DRM, aka Digital Restrictions Management, simply sucks. The content is not protected, it's crippled. Besides I don't see how crippled content could compete with free content already present on P2P networks, no matter whether the DRM is centralized or not.

Anyway now the idea itself is crippled too because it's patented, which significantly reduces the chances of seeing such an implementation anytime soon. For that, thank you Microsoft!

Spotify? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29512801)

Isn't this sort of what spotify already do?

So what? It won't be much P2P (3, Interesting)

Kjella (173770) | more than 4 years ago | (#29512803)

Not anymore than the Internet is P2P anyway. It'll be a slight more advanced form of distribution from someone in control of the DRM to those without control of the DRM. The whole point of peer-to-peer is that it's millions of peers sharing all sorts of shit. Everything from the mainstream to the obscure. of course not all the obscure things are on TPB but there are much more specialized niche sites. There's usually something for everyone. That's what makes it popular, who cares what this is?

Is there anybody that think that iTunes don't have the server capacity? Bullshit. If you're paying you might as well pay another 5 cent so they host the bandwidth. That's cheap central bandwidth, unlike your expensive last mile bandwidth. What peer-to-peer did was to distribute that already low cost from one server to all the peers, so that people actually operate torrent sites without killing themselves on bandwidth as opposed to the old ftp servers. That way you didn't have to start with micropayments, and just share.

So yeah whatever make a DRM'd P2P network. It won't have any of the appeal of free P2P or any real advantage over centralized DRM. Good luck on that.

Re:So what? It won't be much P2P (1)

JasterBobaMereel (1102861) | more than 4 years ago | (#29512933)

Putting DRM on something means you have lost control of it ... DRM works by giving you the locked box and the key .... then trying to hide the fact that that you have now have the key

This seems to be more like plain encryption, anyone can have the content but it is useless without the key, I will give you the key for a fee, just like a licence key, and this is unique so can be traced to you if you give it to others ... not really DRM at all ...?

I thought the customers had spoken already? (4, Insightful)

miffo.swe (547642) | more than 4 years ago | (#29512813)

I believed the customers had spoken out clearly enough about DRM. All sites i have seen lately that sells music are totally into mp3.

I dont think people will take it up the shute any more willingly just because its movies thats DRM tainted. Especially not now when movies is getting into all sorts of gadgets like mobile phones, media players, netbooks and game devices etc.

DRM only do one thing from the paying customer perspective, severely limits the portability of paid content. It does not bring any benefits whatsoever. It also makes pirated/cracked content better than bought content and thats really not a good selling point. My kid really hates Microsoft because of how bad the DRM in GTA4 was and how many hoops he had to jump through to get it installed and working. He actually d/l a pirated version even if he has a legit copy, just to avoid the DRM stuff. I have a really hard time explaining to him why he should pay for his games after stuff like this.

The reason Microsoft is so into this is pretty obvious. They want to be the gatekeeper between people and their content so that any content will demand Microsoft licenses to be usable.

Re:I thought the customers had spoken already? (1)

icebraining (1313345) | more than 4 years ago | (#29513961)

"I believed the customers had spoken out clearly enough about DRM.

Sure, but this patent was filled in 2003, and only granted now.

iPlayer (4, Interesting)

mccalli (323026) | more than 4 years ago | (#29512827)

Re-emerge? BBC iPlayer, in its desktop not Flash-streaming form, is already a DRM'd p2p distribution system. Has been very successful though not as much as the straight Flash-based service from what I can tell.

Cheers,
Ian

Re:iPlayer (4, Informative)

jonbryce (703250) | more than 4 years ago | (#29512865)

They've ditched the p2p version. You can now either download .wmv files directly from their servers, or use their Adobe AIR interface to download flash video directly.

Channel 4 have also pretty much ditched their p2p offering in favour of flash video. ITV never had a p2p offering, but they've ditched their silverlight video in favour of flash video.

That leaves Sky. They did at one point have a Kontiki p2p offering. They might still do.

Re:iPlayer (1)

hab136 (30884) | more than 4 years ago | (#29512971)

They've ditched the p2p version

Much internet access in the UK is metered, so p2p is not viable due to the pricing structure.

Consumer internet in the US (and many other countries) is often unmetered, and so is fine.

Re:iPlayer (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29513963)

Metered internet access in the UK? Please update your records, for we've had unmetered internet access in the UK for a good many years. While we might have to put up with throttling, it's still not metered.

(For reference, Virgin Media is throttled, Be/O2 isn't, and both are pay monthly..)

Re:iPlayer (1)

imrehg (1187617) | more than 4 years ago | (#29513339)

Re-emerge? BBC iPlayer, in its desktop not Flash-streaming form, is already a DRM'd p2p distribution system. Has been very successful though not as much as the straight Flash-based service from what I can tell.

The DRM from those files was stripped relatively easily. There you have it....

Anyone else thinks that... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29512897)

Patenting bad thing is actually good for the rest of us?

Patents by their purpose and nature stifle competition, and restrict the use of whatever they patent, either through complete prohibition of use by third parties, or by raising the cost of using them due to licensing fees.

That's why we hate patenting GOOD technologies that will actually benefit users. But here we have a thoroughly-hated technology being patented. Is that bad for us? I'd argue it's good, becuase it precisely means that other would be DRM-users are now in a more difficult position to use this form of DRM. Whereas before the patent was filed, everyone could freely use this type of DRM, now only Microsoft is able to do so. If X companies patent X different DRM technologies, then they are only able to use their own patents (or pay each other licensing fees, plus all the overhead of contracts, litigation, whatever), whereas each company would be able to freely use all the DRM technologies in lieu of the patent. So when companies stifle each other's attempts to implement restrictive technology, the rest of us benefits.

Yes, if this was a "traditional" patent which brought some kind of innovation into the field, you could argue that the backside is that publishing this innovation would allow others to use it (albeit with licensing expenses), whereas it would be completely unavailable without the invention being done and patented. But as with other kinds of software "patents", there is pretty much no meaningful innovation involved -- it's all about taking prior art technologies, shuffling around the definitions, and submitting a patent before the next guy does.

So go ahead, DRM companies, spend time and money patenting your DRM technologies, which will restrict their use by other companies. Unbewittingly, you are doing the free software community a favor.

Peer-to-Peer banned in Brazil. (3, Informative)

freedom_india (780002) | more than 4 years ago | (#29512927)

Re:Peer-to-Peer banned in Brazil. (4, Informative)

buchner.johannes (1139593) | more than 4 years ago | (#29513115)

That article and the ban was based on making money on illegal content (with advertising) and only for that specific website. RTFA, not just the headlines.

Re:Peer-to-Peer banned in Brazil. (1)

freedom_india (780002) | more than 4 years ago | (#29513673)

RTFA, not just the headlines

This is slashdot. Not Reuters.

Re:Peer-to-Peer banned in Brazil. (1)

T Murphy (1054674) | more than 4 years ago | (#29514261)

See, that's the problem. You accept this "article reading" DRM attached to the information. If you would just boycott this DRM eventually they will have to give you the information without such restrictive limitations.

Another stupid idea cracked in 2 days. (1)

Tei (520358) | more than 4 years ago | (#29512991)

Well. As everyone will tell you, a encryptation system that give the attacker the unencryptation algoritym, enormeous ammounts of data unencrypted and such data encrypted is stupid.

Also, P2P is less efficient (for the downloaders) than C2S. Why would the nodes download at slower speed from a legal P2P DRM network, wen can download from a warez C2S service, like a FTP, or a HTTP server like Megaupload. Humm?

And I think DRM sould be illegal, has remove stuff like second sale, and the freedom to use a tool for whatever the buyer need it, where he need it. The people selling stuff with DRM is on a confussion, are selling CD's, or are selling licenses?, If I lost my CD, can I download it again because I own a license? If I am buying a fisical product, can I make it whatever i want, like backups?, or sell to other people. With DRM the seller want to have both the rights of a license and a product, and give none of these right to the buyer.

Don't infringe patents (1)

Thoughts from Englan (1212556) | more than 4 years ago | (#29512997)

I suppose to avoid patent infringement we shouldn't use DRM on our P2P networks. How will we all manage :o)

This shows how clueless they are (1)

rastoboy29 (807168) | more than 4 years ago | (#29513009)

To have as much money and resources as MS does, and to still be actually patenting such technology, shows that they don't understand, like, computers and stuff.

I mean...nobody wants to buy that DRM'd stuff.  Ordinary folks are finally starting to figure out themselves that DRM sucks.  It's taken a decade or so, but they're coming around.

Re:This shows how clueless they are (1)

icebraining (1313345) | more than 4 years ago | (#29513985)

Yes, folks are starting figure it out _now_, not in 2003 when this patent was filled, as TFA says.

DRM free iTunes? (1)

tsa (15680) | more than 4 years ago | (#29513011)

A bit off-topic, I know, but what has been the result for Apple of removing DRM from the iTunes store? How much more did they sell? And what if the result had been negative, would they have gone back to the old DRM'd scheme?

Re:DRM free iTunes? (1)

agnosticnixie (1481609) | more than 4 years ago | (#29513275)

We'll have to see, 100% DRM-free iTMS was only reached last April, but according to the wikipedia article [wikipedia.org] they made a third of their entire sales just this year (3 billion) and it supposedly has about 70% of the official market. Of course there might be a bit of "needing to take off/broadband to be more common worldwide" but the shop was opened in 2004...

Quick summary: I don't know, but it might.

They can have it (2, Insightful)

VanillaCoke420 (662576) | more than 4 years ago | (#29513033)

That's one patent they can keep.

Only America would award a patent for malware... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29513249)

Because that is exactly what DRM is. Microsoft can use DRM to lock people into it's software, and for some reason society as a whole is too stupid to recognize this.

If all multimedia content on the web gets infected with their DRM malware, you will have no choice but to use their software to access it... It isn't rocket science.

Supplying Bandwidth (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29513611)

I buy my music legally. I don't p2p, but that's my thing - people can do what they want. That being said - If I'm going to pay for my music, I'll be damned if I'm going to be a host so other people can download their music from me unless they lower the cost of music from $1.29/$0.99 to $0.64/$0.49.

No problem at all (1)

stokessd (89903) | more than 4 years ago | (#29513833)

Any P2P offering requires the generosity of people who have already downloaded it to keep sharing it to others. This "good will" is the glue that keeps an offering going. With DRMed content, I predict there will be a LOT less good will amongst people who use P2P, and thus those offerings will be the least reliable and least available. Unless this P2P service is bundled into a larger software package or platform, like the zune phone or xbox720.

Sheldon

Poor Mr. Strauss (1)

a still small voice (1591663) | more than 4 years ago | (#29514247)

I was always told by my music composition teachers to never "give away" my i.p. -- the general sentiment being that it is harmful to not only myself, but to all the other composers trying to make a living, too. They also stressed that it has caused long-term damage to the quality of the art form in the past, as well. They're adamant about this because they know their history, and they know that when copyright and i.p. have been non-existent or disregarded in the past, it has resulted in the suffering of artists and art alike...so when I hear "down with DRM" and "down with copyright", I associate it with "down with art" and "down with artists". Is that really what you're intending, because that's for sure how it's coming across to the "evil industry" that's so easy to hide behind. IMO, there's a baby in that bathwater ...and it's being thrown out a little more everytime copyright is infringed. How can you blame its parents for being disgusted and trying to stop you after knowing they feel like you're killing the art? All money and greed aside, it's the driven artists that create the best and most influential works of our time, and we all suffer if making a living dedicating themselves to it becomes so difficult as to be impossible.

Since DRM.. (1)

Hymer (856453) | more than 4 years ago | (#29514259)

..is dead, we can assume that MS do what they are best at: collecting patents for extinct technologies.

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