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Apple Patent Reveals Gift-Giving Platform For NFC-Based iDevices

samzenpus posted more than 2 years ago | from the it's-on-me dept.

Iphone 110

redletterdave writes "While downloading and storing digital media with online service providers has become commonplace — more so than purchasing DVDs and CDs at physical retail stores — it's not very easy to transfer digital files from one individual to another, usually because of copyright laws. Some digital distributors have systems for limiting usage and distribution of their products from the original purchaser to others, but often times, transferring a copyright-protected file from one device to another can result in the file being unplayable or totally inaccessible. Apple believes it has a solution to this issue: A gift-giving platform where users have a standardized way for buying, sending and receiving media files from a provider (iTunes) between multiple electronic devices (iPhones, iPads). The process is simply called, 'Gifting.'"

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Please don't (2, Insightful)

ShieldW0lf (601553) | more than 2 years ago | (#39838715)

I'd feel guilty that the gift giver had funded what Apple is doing in the world. I'd be upset to receive such a gift.

Gifting is insightful (4, Interesting)

goombah99 (560566) | more than 2 years ago | (#39838819)

It remains to be seen what actually comes from this, but it may address a central conundrum of ownership and copyright in the digital age. My feeling on the copyright issue is that if I have a book, I have one copy, but it is mine and I can give it or sell it or loan it to anyone I please. The key thing is that if I give my copy away then it is gone. I don't have it, and I can't give it to any more than one person at a time.

This satisfies the idea that the creator has control of the copy number (and hence meaning to the word copyright) and yet I have complete control over my copy including sharing it.

The problem is the digital age is how to transmit a copy to another person in such a way that I lose physical possession. You can think of a lot of complicated ways to do this. What is missing is a simple almost transparent and effortless way to do this. anything else either feels like a DRM trap or allows rampant distribution in violation of the creator's copyright.

If apple can solve this simplicity issue, then it bodes well for the industry and the consumer. Recall the pre 99 cent track days. by introducing that simple distillation it became less of a hassle to buy and share music across all your personal devices, for most people, this was simpler than hassling with trying to find it free somewhere.

I look forward to this to see if they implement it simply and equitably.

Re:Gifting is insightful (4, Insightful)

PopeRatzo (965947) | more than 2 years ago | (#39838885)

My feeling on the copyright issue is that if I have a book, I have one copy, but it is mine and I can give it or sell it or loan it to anyone I please. The key thing is that if I give my copy away then it is gone. I don't have it, and I can't give it to any more than one person at a time.

Sometimes, social conventions become obsolete, and that obsolescence is always a one-way street. Copyright has become obsolete, and all the DRM and increasingly desperate laws being put on the books to try to protect copyright are doomed to failure. When it's so easy to make perfect copies at will, perfect copies will be made. The pro-copyright people cannot possibly win. They can make life shittier and more expensive, but they can never, ever win this one.

The winners will be the ones who figure out new models for making a living from their work. The losers will be the ones who continue to cling pitifully to an outmoded ideal. Copyright was pretty much a stop-gap measure to begin with. It was always doomed to fail.

And know what? People will continue to create, to innovate and to make great music/art/literature/movies, because that's what humans do. At some point, the people who only got into it for the money will figure things out and move on to some other money-making venture. Can you imagine what it'll be like when the only ones left in those fields are the ones for whom it actually means something besides money? It could well trigger another Golden Age.

Re:Gifting is insightful (2)

goombah99 (560566) | more than 2 years ago | (#39838971)

My feeling on the copyright issue is that if I have a book, I have one copy, but it is mine and I can give it or sell it or loan it to anyone I please. The key thing is that if I give my copy away then it is gone. I don't have it, and I can't give it to any more than one person at a time.

Sometimes, social conventions become obsolete, and that obsolescence is always a one-way street. Copyright has become obsolete, and all the DRM and increasingly desperate laws being put on the books to try to protect copyright are doomed to failure. When it's so easy to make perfect copies at will, perfect copies will be made. The pro-copyright people cannot possibly win.

This is not really true. Consider Sheet music. It's trivial reprint this. So this issue was around well before the digital age. Copyright still has full meaning because the creators need compensation. THe fact that it became even cheaper to copy only makes the argument better for copyright protection not worse.

No the new thing is not the "cheapness" of the copy process negating the need for copyright, but rather the problem of how to transmit a copyrighted work without creating a new copy inadvertently.

Re:Gifting is insightful (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39839025)

Consider Sheet music.

Right. It has been broken for a while now.

Copyright still has full meaning because the creators need compensation.

Everyone needs compensation. Unfortunately, that's not always possible. Those who can't get it go out of business. Most people don't get personal monopolies, though.

Re:Gifting is insightful (1)

NeverSuchBefore (2613927) | more than 2 years ago | (#39839035)

but rather the problem of how to transmit a copyrighted work without creating a new copy inadvertently.

How would this be possible without a locked-down platform? DRM hurts everyone, including paying customers. Actually, it doesn't even stop the pirates at all.

What they need to do is to stop getting innocents caught in the crossfire when they're trying to stop the 'enemy'. This means no nonsensical DRM.

Re:Gifting is insightful (1)

jbolden (176878) | more than 2 years ago | (#39843337)

DRM hurts everyone, including paying customers.

Bad, restrictive DRM hurts everyone. What we need are good quality DRM that protects that publishers and the consumers balancing the two. Which is the sort of thing best handled by legislation.

Re:Gifting is insightful (1)

NeverSuchBefore (2613927) | more than 2 years ago | (#39843445)

Bad, restrictive DRM hurts everyone.

All DRM is restrictive. That is by design. If it wasn't, then you could freely do whatever you wanted with the data. In which case, it wouldn't really stop unwanted copying, now would it (not that it does anyway)?

Even Steam is a form of DRM. I've often wondered why you even need Steam to run the games rather than it just being a platform to download the games on.

What we need are good quality DRM that protects that publishers and the consumers balancing the two.

And the pirates will just get rid of that, too. What a waste of time. I know of no DRM that protects publishers or customers. That concept sounds like pure unadulterated nonsense to me.

In short, this is far, far easier said than done.

Which is the sort of thing best handled by legislation.

Legislation? You mean like SOPA and the DMCA? Enforcing copyright is nigh impossible, and worst of all, the damage the legislation does to innocents is often even worse than the damage DRM does.

Re:Gifting is insightful (1)

jbolden (176878) | more than 2 years ago | (#39843633)

All DRM is restrictive. That is by design. If it wasn't, then you could freely do whatever you wanted with the data.

The goal of most content producers is to let you do what you want with your data. The more ways you have of using their content the more often you are going to be will to pay and the more you are going to willing to pay. At the same time they need to control who gets what content at what cost.

So I don't think it is accurate to say they want to control "what", they are interested in controlling "who" and what is just a mechanism.

And the pirates will just get rid of that, too. What a waste of time.

If the world is going to be dominated by rampant piracy like Asia then we are just going to live in a world where the only content that exists is stuff that for one reason or another isn't worth stealing. Right now publishers believe they can beat pirates and the media world has continued to function.

Legislation? You mean like SOPA and the DMCA?

Yes. And I also mean restrictions on the RIAA when they got out of control. Our government is too corporate friendly right now but they are the right place to resolve these issues.

Enforcing copyright is nigh impossible,

We are doing it now and we have been doing it for centuries. There are failures but the fact are that most content is bought from publishers not from pirates.

and worst of all, the damage the legislation does to innocents is often even worse than the damage DRM does.

That's just hyperbole. You have to look at places where there is much less enforcement and balance out plusses and minuses which IMHO comes down clearly on the side of plusses.

Re:Gifting is insightful (1)

NeverSuchBefore (2613927) | more than 2 years ago | (#39843761)

So I don't think it is accurate to say they want to control "what", they are interested in controlling "who" and what is just a mechanism.

But in the end, DRM always controls you, the customer, and what you can do with your own data. This is a fact. If it did not, cracking it wouldn't even be necessary.

Right now publishers believe they can beat pirates and the media world has continued to function.

And they obviously can't. We've seen them try, but they've failed. It takes ridiculous amounts of money just to shut down a single website, and pirates just move on to the next. In fact, sometimes they even waste taxpayer money on this nonsense. And for what? To stop a few people from copying data? Sorry if I don't think they're national heroes.

It continues to function not because they believe they can stop it, but because some (most, probably) people are still buying the media.

We are doing it now and we have been doing it for centuries.

And we've failed time and time again. It's much more simple to catch commercial copyright infringement. However, when you have normal people all over the world infringing upon copyright, that is much, much more difficult to prevent. No, it's just impossible. Especially if they start using encryption/VPNs.

There are failures but the fact are that most content is bought from publishers not from pirates.

Bought? You don't even need to buy it; it's available for free. As I said, commercial copyright infringement is a bit more simple to stop.

You have to look at places where there is much less enforcement and balance out plusses and minuses which IMHO comes down clearly on the side of plusses.

Sorry, but if any of the "minuses" happen to be a loss of privacy or collateral damage, I would much rather have no copyright enforcement.

Freedom is absolutely more important to me than copyright, and I don't think there's anything you could say that would change my mind. Any defense of DRM will just fall on deaf ears.

However, if you have a solution that doesn't involve violating people's privacy, opening the internet up to dangerous censorship, or causing collateral damage, feel free to chime in. If you know of a single piece of DRM that doesn't restrict the customer in some way, please tell me. I know of none.

Re:Gifting is insightful (1)

jbolden (176878) | more than 2 years ago | (#39844183)

But in the end, DRM always controls you, the customer, and what you can do with your own data. This is a fact. If it did not, cracking it wouldn't even be necessary.

Cracking it is only necessary to share to change the who. The additional restrictions are a function of the fact we aren't very good at DRM yet. But as a culture we are getting better quickly.

And they obviously can't. We've seen them try, but they've failed. It takes ridiculous amounts of money just to shut down a single website, and pirates just move on to the next

I don't see them failing. I see a thriving movie business, a thriving television business, a thriving e-book business, a thriving digital magazine business, and even the music business is starting to recover. As for the rest that's what fighting all crime is like but certain crimes are mostly defeated. Imagine what Napster would be like today if it hadn't been shut down.

And we've failed time and time again. It's much more simple to catch commercial copyright infringement. However, when you have normal people all over the world infringing upon copyright, that is much, much more difficult to prevent. No, it's just impossible. Especially if they start using encryption/VPNs.

No it isn't. It is being prevented now. Normal people have a threshold of quality vs. price vs. willingness to copy. They copy when the price of not copying is high and the hassle is low. So for example when good quality tape decks came around and you could make tapes almost as good as the original copying skyrocketed. Then the CD came out and cassette tapes were far worse than the original.

Again there is a thriving industry today that wouldn't exist if you were correct.

Sorry, but if any of the "minuses" happen to be a loss of privacy or collateral damage, I would much rather have no copyright enforcement. Freedom is absolutely more important to me than copyright, and I don't think there's anything you could say that would change my mind. Any defense of DRM will just fall on deaf ears.

That's fine. But is is an extreme position on the matter politically. Most people value content far more than minor changes to privacy and understand that law enforcement in many areas often involves collateral damage and collateral damage far worse than anything the DRM debate will ever produce. In real life people make choices between competing objectives and balance trade offs.

For Americans broadly, we want privacy, we want freedom and we want a thriving content creation industry which is customer supported. The resolution of the DRM debate will be a sacrifice of a little bit in each area. The music industry was not happy about moving to a model of selling singles and not albums but likes the fact that they are selling. I was on the internet back when everyone had to use a real name account tied to their employer. When there was far far less privacy and it was not a nightmare world there were plusses and minuses.

You are free to assert an extreme position but that's not meaningfully addressing the complexity of balancing competing interests which is how societies really do make policy. In the end your policy, absolutism on privacy and freedom in exchange for a return to the dismal content that exist when aristocrats funded vanity projects is not going to be acceptable.

Re:Gifting is insightful (1)

NeverSuchBefore (2613927) | more than 2 years ago | (#39844459)

Cracking it is only necessary to share to change the who.

No, it's not. If you have, say, music on one device and DRM that restricts it to that one device, cracking it could allow you to play it on all of your devices. That is just one example.

Please tell me more about this magical DRM that places absolutely no restrictions upon the paying customer; I'd love to know more.

I see a thriving movie business, a thriving television business, a thriving e-book business, a thriving digital magazine business, and even the music business is starting to recover.

That has nothing to do with stopping piracy. Most people just don't pirate, either due to ignorance or because they simply don't want to. You're assuming it's because they've shut down a few websites, and that's simply removed from reality.

As for the rest that's what fighting all crime is like

Not quite. Internet piracy is special since it doesn't have any noticeable effects on anyone (other than a loss of potential profit) and is mostly completely untraceable. It's also quite widespread (although most probably don't engage in it).

Normal people have a threshold of quality vs. price vs. willingness to copy.

I didn't say otherwise. You're just putting words into my mouth. I stated a fact: piracy is fairly widespread and difficult to stop. That doesn't mean all or even most people do it.

Most people value content far more than minor changes to privacy

[citation needed]

Not that it matters how many people believe that, but I'm interested to know how you know that.

and understand that law enforcement in many areas often involves collateral damage and collateral damage far worse than anything the DRM debate will ever produce.

No collateral damage is difficult to avoid, but DRM is arbitrary collateral damage. It isn't necessary at all. For one thing, its entire point is to stop unwanted copying: a 'crime' that can hardly be considered on the level of jaywalking. Yet people treat it as if it's a national security emergency.

They can use DRM all they want, but I'll never buy their garbage.

For Americans broadly, we want privacy, we want freedom

Doubt it, honestly. Probably the same ones who have a "nothing to hide nothing to fear" mentality.

we want a thriving content creation industry which is customer supported.

DRM and draconian copyright laws aren't necessary for that. But even if they were, I'll have none of that. I will never buy anything with DRM.

You are free to assert an extreme position but that's not meaningfully addressing the complexity of balancing competing interests which is how societies really do make policy.

There's no need to address that due to it being nonsense. Sometimes extreme positions are correct. I'm not saying that mine is, but it happens.

And if desiring freedom is considered "extreme," then I don't want to live in this country any longer.

absolutism on privacy and freedom

I didn't mention anything about absolutism.

in exchange for a return to the dismal content

Non sequitur. Please tell me how you reached the conclusion that the absence of draconian laws and DRM would bring only "dismal content." And then prove it, please.

In my opinion, your stance on DRM, laws, and freedom are simply broken and completely incompatible with mine. In fact, just as you seem to find my views extreme, I find yours extreme. Not that that makes them wrong, of course.

Re:Gifting is insightful (1)

jbolden (176878) | more than 2 years ago | (#39845103)

The proof of my views on the alternative is Asia. We have societies similar in technology to our own with widespread copyright infringement and a much weaker content creation industry as piracy has been normalized. Moreover it makes sense.

In terms of copying being less serious than jaywalking. Media represents hundreds of billions of dollars combined. The destruction of the US media industry would exceed many times the destruction on 9/11 in terms of economic value. It would exceed the worst natural disasters like Katrina many times over.

As for the rest your model doesn't make sense. Piracy is rampant but it doesn't have economic impact, there is nothing that can be done, but people don't do it.... It is very simple...

Anti piracy is working if most consumers are buying not stealing their content. If you think that is happening then anti-piracy is working.

Please tell me more about this magical DRM that places absolutely no restrictions upon the paying customer; I'd love to know more.

I didn't say magic or no restrictions. What I said was that the desire is to control the who. The mechanisms as they get better will restrict less and less as you can see already in ebooks, movies or music today vs. 5 years ago. This BTW is what I mean by absolutist and extreme. It is possible to have some restrictions or a few restrictions and that is different than total lockdown.

Re:Gifting is insightful (1)

NeverSuchBefore (2613927) | more than 2 years ago | (#39845589)

The proof of my views on the alternative is Asia.

How is that proof? That's no copyright enforcement at all. How about showing proof that your draconian laws and DRM are good things? What's especially funny is that I never said anything about no copyright enforcement. But if it is to be enforced, it must be done so in a way that doesn't violate people's rights or privacy. And guess what? There is no reason that you cannot enforce copyright in a way that doesn't violate people's privacy and freedom. This is done on a case-by-case basis. How you could ever trust the government with such powers is beyond me.

If you're going to propose laws, the burden of proof is on you.

In terms of copying being less serious than jaywalking. Media represents hundreds of billions of dollars combined.

That's comical. The act of copyright infringement is an act which may or may not cause a loss of potential profit. That's all it is.

But I suppose all that matters is money...

Anti piracy is working if most consumers are buying not stealing their content.

Alternate reasons:

1) They might not even understand how to pirate to begin with.
2) They might think it's morally wrong, but not because a few websites got shut down.

So, yeah, your "anti piracy is working because most people don't pirate" is a nonsensical assumption. Rather than saying correlation is causation, prove that shutting down a few websites occasionally is responsible for most people not resorting to piracy.

What I said was that the desire is to control the who.

You're playing word games. You cannot control the "who" without controlling the "what." After all, you do not know who the "who" is, and you don't know what they're planning to do. There is no magical way to determine this.

ebooks, movies or music today

I don't know what kind of garbage DRM is in ebooks or movies, but music? I heard plenty of music is 100% DRM free. I guess the industry is dead, huh?

This BTW is what I mean by absolutist and extreme.

"extreme" is subjective to begin with. As I said, I think you're taking an extreme stance when you constantly go on and on about compromise.

But, I say again: "extreme" doesn't mean "wrong." Furthermore, if it's extreme to want to control the data you bought, then so be it. I'm an "extremist" according to you. I love freedom, privacy, and the ability to have control over my own property. To me, it's clear that you don't. It seems to me that you're one of those people who would support the TSA or the Patriot Act because they claim to protect us from all the big, evil terrorists. But in this case, at least in my opinion, it's even worse. I mean, at least terrorism actually takes lives. All that's at stake here is potential profit.

It is possible to have some restrictions or a few restrictions and that is different than total lockdown.

If it restricts what I can do with my own property, I'm not going to buy that garbage.

Re:Gifting is insightful (1)

NeverSuchBefore (2613927) | more than 2 years ago | (#39845707)

1) They might not even understand how to pirate to begin with.
2) They might think it's morally wrong, but not because a few websites got shut down.

So, yeah, your "anti piracy is working because most people don't pirate" is a nonsensical assumption. Rather than saying correlation is causation, prove that shutting down a few websites occasionally is responsible for most people not resorting to piracy.

And, you know, you have to be quite ignorant to think that "anti piracy" actions are working. It will literally take me about five seconds to retrieve a torrent file that I can use to pirate the latest game/movie/album. If I was a pirate, that is how easy it would be for me to do so.

Your claims that we're preventing piracy are absolutely removed from reality. It takes about five seconds to see that's not true. As such, the more likely explanation is something completely different (ignorance or the belief that paying the artist is a good thing). This has nothing to do with copyright enforcement. If most people wanted to pirate, you'd be screwed; even more so than you are now.

What world are you living in?

Re:Gifting is insightful (1)

jbolden (176878) | more than 2 years ago | (#39846601)

How you could ever trust the government with such powers is beyond me.

I by nature of government have to entrust government to forcibly move people and put them in captivity. I by the nature of government have to entrust them to kill people and expose Americans to life threatening situation. I by the nature of government have to make them responsible for the safety of our public infrastructure. The power and responsibility for enforcing copyright doesn't even compare. What's the worst that happens, I have to buy stuff I want 3x to use it where I want?

Rather than saying correlation is causation, prove that shutting down a few websites occasionally is responsible for most people not resorting to piracy.

I can't give you firm proof. We don't get to run controlled experiments where we have 2 or 3 or 4 histories with various laws and then move society forwards seeing what the effects are. Instead we have to guess based on similar situations, modeling and analogies. That's the way all laws are argued for.

I don't know what kind of garbage DRM is in ebooks or movies, but music? I heard plenty of music is 100% DRM free. I guess the industry is dead, huh?

No it is severely wounded.
http://static5.businessinsider.com/image/4d5c3e1e4bd7c86216030000/chart-of-the-day-music-industry-1973-2009-feb-2011.jpg [businessinsider.com]

We are down to about a $6b market which is about 2/3rds or more smaller than it likely would have been without digital copying. The effect on mass music and culture has been tremendous.

It seems to me that you're one of those people who would support the TSA or the Patriot Act because they claim to protect us from all the big, evil terrorists.

Those are fair analogies. I don't support everything in the airline security act or the Patriot act because I don't think they are necessary. OTOH I don't question that both are the government doing their job even if I disagree with the particulars.

Re:Gifting is insightful (1)

NeverSuchBefore (2613927) | more than 2 years ago | (#39846767)

I by nature of government have to entrust government to forcibly move people and put them in captivity. I by the nature of government have to entrust them to kill people and expose Americans to life threatening situation. I by the nature of government have to make them responsible for the safety of our public infrastructure.

Which means what? They should be able to do whatever they please because they do other things, too?

What's the worst that happens

Censorship. Loss of freedom and privacy. A complete disregard for the spirit of the constitution.

A lesser evil is still an evil. The government should not be able to ban a single word simply because they don't like it. Let's say it was a lesser used word. A word many people don't use. The harm itself would be relatively small, but it would still be wrong to ban it.

I can't give you firm proof.

Then I sincerely hope you or people like you don't try to pass any laws.

Instead we have to guess based on similar situations, modeling and analogies. That's the way all laws are argued for.

Many laws are put forth without any evidence. You should not be able to pass laws unless you have a damn good reason to support the fact that they should exist, but you haven't even given me that, let alone actual evidence. Otherwise we end up with a bunch of nonsensical laws. Which is exactly what we have now.

We are down to about a $6b market which is about 2/3rds or more smaller than it likely would have been without digital copying. The effect on mass music and culture has been tremendous.

Because of the lack of DRM? If so, how do you know this? Why should I care?

OTOH I don't question that both are the government doing their job even if I disagree with the particulars.

Their job is to violate our freedom and privacy in exchange for security theater? We're a representative democracy, not a direct democracy; if a law would violate the constitution, it must not be passed.

They took an oath to uphold the constitution, and they're simply not doing that when they support SOPA, the TSA, the Patriot Act, or anything similar.

Re:Gifting is insightful (1)

icebike (68054) | more than 2 years ago | (#39839079)

Consider Sheet music. It's trivial reprint this.

Prior to the photocopy machine, it wasn't trivial. With the advent of scan-to-pdf, its even easier today.

Simply stating that copyright is meaningful because someone has a need, does hand waive away the elephant in the room that the GP was stating: Copyright of anything that can take digital form is doomed to failure.

The GP stated, quite insightfully, that a new societal concept is needed, one where authors and composers re-think the way they make their money.

Re:Gifting is insightful (1, Insightful)

cpu6502 (1960974) | more than 2 years ago | (#39839095)

No they don't. Mother Nature has not in any way given us a "right" to hold a monopoly over our creations. The idea, like fire, is only ours so long as we keep it to ourselves. But once we share our idea or our flame with someone else, then it is public domain and can be spread around the world. In fact many of us work w/o any such compensation... I've written tens of thousands of messages over the years and NONE of them is my exclusive monopoly. They are freely-distributed all over the place, as part of the public domain of the Usenet/Internet.

As a writer, I have no more right to a monopoly than does Microsoft or Comcast or the East India Trading Company. When a monopoly is granted by the People to a person, it is a *privilege* and it is revocable at any time the monopoly is no longer beneficial to the People (society).

The grant of the copy monopoly was created in order to jumpstart a culture. Well we have that now. In fact we have too much of it (so many new works are produced for TV, radio, books that it's impossible to keep up). Culture is overflowing. It's the most-productive industry in the U.S. and there is no longer any reason to provide this incentive/subsidy, as it can stand on its own two feet without the artificial support.

Now being the type to compromise, I'd be willing to keep the authors' monopoly but only for a much shorter term. ONE generation, not six generations (115). That's more compensation than most people get (backwages for factory work only goes 3 years into the past). Give an author twenty years, and then the item becomes public domain for the benefit of all 7,000,000,000 humans, rather than just 1.

Re:Gifting is insightful (0)

icebike (68054) | more than 2 years ago | (#39839241)

The grant of the copy monopoly was created in order to jumpstart a culture.

Not really.

Copyright was ALWAYS about protecting a stream of income for the author/creator/publisher. Even before it was codified into law, it was always about protecting a stream of income, and authors were not even protected at first. Only printers [wikipedia.org] .

Jumpstarting a culture was a concept that never existed until recent times (in fact, I think you made it up), because people always had a culture. They lived it every day, and it was a communal culture, shared by stories and legend, written or oral.

Re:Gifting is insightful (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39839445)

No, copyright is an artificial monopoly granted to the creator in order to benefit society. If it didn't benefit society in some way, the existence of such a thing would be completely unjustified. We're not here to make sure creators make money.

Re:Gifting is insightful (1)

icebike (68054) | more than 2 years ago | (#39839533)

I'm sorry, but your view on this is entirely wrong, and totally out of keeping with the facts.
Go read the link I posted.

There was never even a pretense of benefit to society. It was always about preserving a revenue stream (and to a lesser extent, control of undesirable content.) It was always about granting the authors the ability to sell copies of their work and excluding others from doing so for a certain period of time.

That may still be a desirable goal. The subject is open to debate. But its getting in the way of any benefit to society.

Benefit to society was a sop, thrown to the public as an excuse when granting monopoly rights on books to the original publishers.

Re:Gifting is insightful (1)

Golddess (1361003) | more than 2 years ago | (#39844719)

There was never even a pretense of benefit to society.

So that whole to promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts [wikipedia.org] line actually means... what exactly?

Maybe copyright started out as securing income to certain groups of people, but your claim that it has always been about that seems shakey.

Re:Gifting is insightful (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39839523)

No they don't. Mother Nature has not in any way given us a "right" to hold a monopoly over our creations.

What does Mother Nature have to do with anything? If we limited our rights to those granted to Mother Nature, I'd club you over the head for suggesting this. Our society grants us most of the rights we care about. That could certainly include monopoly over individuals' creations, if it were enforceable and the society deemed it worthy.

Re:Gifting is insightful (1)

MightyYar (622222) | more than 2 years ago | (#39840039)

Consider Sheet music. It's trivial reprint this

Sheet music is only a 1.1 billion dollar industry, and it's share of the total "music industry" pie has gone from nearly 100% to nearly 0%. Clearly the producers of sheet music have "lost" in the sense the grandparent was talking about. I imagine (but I'm guessing) that most sheet music sales are commercial in nature - perhaps that is inevitable and we should only apply copyright to commercial transactions?

Re:Gifting is insightful (1)

jbolden (176878) | more than 2 years ago | (#39843367)

I would bet you that most sheet music sales are to students learning to play instruments or good quality song books sold to parents for things like sing alongs with the kids.

Re:Gifting is insightful (1)

MightyYar (622222) | more than 2 years ago | (#39843417)

Yeah I doubt those $5 sing-a-long books add up to a significant chunk of $1 billion, but I've had a hard time finding anything on google. I'm definitely being biased towards the US market - for all I know, there are countries where every household buys a bunch of sheet music every year.

Re:Gifting is insightful (1)

jbolden (176878) | more than 2 years ago | (#39843457)

Lets take my daughter. I bought her about 2 of those books when she was young the more expensive one retailed at like $18. Since she's started playing an instrument I'm dropping over $50 / yr in sheet music. 20m people x $50/yr = $1b.

Re:Gifting is insightful (1)

MightyYar (622222) | more than 2 years ago | (#39843995)

Yeah, that seems reasonable. I just couldn't find how common it was for people to buy sheet music. Your number assumes 7% of all men, women, and children buy sheet music... I think that might be a tad high - but I am completely pulling gut-feel numbers out of my ass. :)

Re:Gifting is insightful (1)

MightyYar (622222) | more than 2 years ago | (#39843463)

I looked around some more and still can't add much. But it seems that royalties are typically 10% of total sales... so only $110 million is going to the author of the sheet music per year. Pop music, it seems the going rate is 12.5% - so it could be as high as $125 million.

Still, that's $125 million that the artists would not otherwise have, so the question becomes are we as a society getting a good return on our $1.1 billion investment?

Re:Gifting is insightful (1)

jbolden (176878) | more than 2 years ago | (#39843669)

I'd love the link. I would guess that most of the money is going to the record companies and the music stores that carry the sheet music. Physical music stores are expensive but do add to my quality of life. I don't have a huge problem with them getting a few hundred million.

Record companies we get to the whole artists vs. publisher issue. And for pop I come down on the side of the publishers. I think you just have to look at genres that have good artists and don't have an entire industry of support: Opera, Classical, Jazz, BlueGrass, Foreign... to see how much value the record companies add. Unpopular opinion on /. but I think they earn their cut. It takes a lot of effort to get people to buy stuff.

Re:Gifting is insightful (1)

MightyYar (622222) | more than 2 years ago | (#39844039)

The source for the royalties was a SFGATE piece [sfgate.com] . It seemed reasonable, but like me they very well could be pulling numbers out of their behind :)

I think that once you get to a 1:10 return rate on your money, you might as well just let the government directly subsidize or give tax breaks for commissioning an artist to make a public domain work. Government is horribly inefficient, but that number's just atrocious, and the product that they put out stays out of the public domain for 90 years.

Re:Gifting is insightful (1)

jbolden (176878) | more than 2 years ago | (#39844929)

I agree with upping government subsidies for most music forms and I agree with shorter copyright.

But what I was saying is I don't think artists are the major component in popular / cultural music. I think it is the marketing guys and the cultural infrastructure (i.e. movie theaters or what used to be record stores). Artists by themselves don't create great music that impacts a culture.

Re:Gifting is insightful (1)

MightyYar (622222) | more than 2 years ago | (#39845087)

I certainly agree that there is some value added by the infrastructure (especially the venues). I think there is even a place for the marketing types. I just think it's a shame that we desire music, so we enact copyright, and then 90% of our money is going toward things other than music. It all seems rather roundabout and inefficient - though at least an argument could be made that it is responsive to demand.

Re:Gifting is insightful (1)

jbolden (176878) | more than 2 years ago | (#39845349)

That's my point. I don't think we desire music in and of itself. Music in and of itself doesn't have large fan followings. What we seem to desire is the cultural experience connected with music: fandom, celebrity worship... a proxy religion. And that requires an infrastructure of which musicians are just a small part.

Re:Gifting is insightful (1)

MightyYar (622222) | more than 2 years ago | (#39845623)

What we seem to desire is the cultural experience connected with music: fandom, celebrity worship... a proxy religion.

Yeah, well, I guess I'm not interested in supporting that :)

I like music (and books, movies, etc) and so I buy into the copyright system to provide them. But when I see how inefficient it is and all of the additional burden it places on society, I have to wonder if copyright is the right way to achieve these goals.

Though I have to admit that I'm two-faced on this issue - I think there should still be commercial copyright in some form. I just think that a "Joe Consumer" shouldn't need to be a JD in order to understand what he is and is not allowed to do with a product he bought from a store shelf.

Re:Gifting is insightful (1)

jbolden (176878) | more than 2 years ago | (#39846461)

Yeah, well, I guess I'm not interested in supporting that :)

I get that. But IMHO that's what's required to create the interest for musicians to be able to sell in large numbers. Again think about what genres that don't have the celebrity culture look like... One of my favorite groups is Blackmore's Night which is sort of a modern Renaissance folk, and they make their money playing small faires to thousands of fans. That IMHO is what the music business looks like without music companies.

Clips4sale or Lifetime Television is what the movie business would like without the studios. iUniverse where selling 200 copies of a book to very interested readers and the authors losing money is what the book business would look like without the publishers.

I like music (and books, movies, etc) and so I buy into the copyright system to provide them. But when I see how inefficient it is and all of the additional burden it places on society, I have to wonder if copyright is the right way to achieve these goals.

I do to. My differences is I take the wider cultural context into account.

I just think that a "Joe Consumer" shouldn't need to be a JD in order to understand what he is and is not allowed to do with a product he bought from a store shelf.

Even a guy with a JD doesn't know. I think that's a short term problem caused by technology outstripping law. The law will catch up. I'd like to have a better regulatory regime with regulators acting quickly in the public interest which is why I vote Dem.

Re:Gifting is insightful (1)

MightyYar (622222) | more than 2 years ago | (#39846729)

That IMHO is what the music business looks like without music companies.

I'm comfortable with that...

Clips4sale or Lifetime Television is what the movie business would like without the studios.

No Transformers movie??? LOL, I think our society would survive...

Now, I want to be clear that I'm not advocating the total dissolution of copyright. I would be quite happy with shorter terms (perhaps along the lines of patent law). I'd be even happier with commercial-only copyright law. I was just musing about how wasteful the system is.

iUniverse where selling 200 copies of a book to very interested readers and the authors losing money is what the book business would look like without the publishers.

I kind of disagree here... there are already some very successful self-published authors selling ebooks. I think the publishers are in for a wild ride, copyright or no copyright.

My differences is I take the wider cultural context into account.

Yeah you are being to generous :)

The law will catch up.

I think it will, too. Unfortunately, I think it will only grow more complicated.

I'd like to have a better regulatory regime with regulators acting quickly in the public interest which is why I vote Dem.

I find that, in practice, both major parties behave exactly the same except on wedge issues. The most remarkable thing about "Hope and Change" is that the biggest "change" has been to implement the health care plan proposed by the Republicans in response to the Clinton health care plan! Hopefully we'll see Obama veto CISPA - that is something that Bush would've signed for sure :)

Re:Gifting is insightful (1)

PopeRatzo (965947) | more than 2 years ago | (#39841477)

Consider Sheet music.

Consider wikifonia.org.

Re:Gifting is insightful (1)

cpu6502 (1960974) | more than 2 years ago | (#39839165)

>>>The pro-copyright people cannot possibly win.

They can win if they are reasonable in their demands. Example: Movies. Most movies are released for $25 on disc, but five years later after interest has waned, you can find them in the bargain bin for $2.

In twenty years they are so old, they have virtually no value (except for a few rare gems) and they are given away for free views on TV or the net. Ditto songs and books. --- So why not make the copyright term 20 years, and let these works be enriching the lives of everyone everywhere, as part of the public domain (shared culture of humanity). That compromise will let copyright live on, otherwise it is doomed to ultimately fail because nobody will wait 115 years to see a movie, book, or song. They'll just pirate it.

TRIVIA -
- One of the reasons "It's A Wonderful Life" became so popular is because it fell into public domain, local stations started running it repeatedly, and soon an old forgotten movie (which had flopped in theaters) became part of our shared culture. The same could happen with other works, if they were simply freed of the shackles of copyright & freely-distributed amongst the people. Instead they are hidden-away in warehouses unseen.

Re:Gifting is insightful (1)

PopeRatzo (965947) | more than 2 years ago | (#39841463)

They can win if they are reasonable in their demands.

Maybe, but reasonable is no longer part of corporate culture.

Re:Gifting is insightful (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39839449)

Can you imagine what it'll be like when the only ones left in those fields are the ones for whom it actually means something besides money? It could well trigger another Golden Age.

Brilliant. While we're at it, maybe we could lure all the talented math-oriented people who are interested in money into a lucrative field like finance. All the people left over, surely the best and brightest of the bunch, will represent the cream of the crop, and trigger another Golden Age in American mathematics and engineering.

Wake up.

Re:Gifting is insightful (1)

jbolden (176878) | more than 2 years ago | (#39843327)

Copyright has become obsolete

Not really, we still are heavily focused on rewarding content creators based on copies sold. We don't have a situation where most content is created by the state, nor a model where most content is funded by rich people as vanity projects which are the two major alternatives.

Before computers we still faced a world where people would play movies without compensating studios, transfer movies to video, play music without licensing, pirate music onto "mix tapes", sell illegally recorded concept tapes, photocopy books... What we have is a situation where copyright is getting harder to enforce and we need a new collection of black letter law to deal with issues like the proper analogy to libraries.

Re:Gifting is insightful (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39838937)

One of the things I like about apple is that because they are not a content producer and they get paid by device consumers not the content producers, they have seen it in their interest to urge content producers to lessen their steely grip. The use of "speed bump" DRM was a good idea. While every one was focusing on how to make DRM impenetrable for music, apple just focused on how to make it a hassle but not impossible to copy music. If the price is cheap enough, the hassle is all the DRM you need to slow down piracy.

It is odd that the MPAA is one of the hold-outs on the death grip DRM model. Perhaps this is because movies are rarer than songs so they require, individually, more sales to be viable at selling for $3.99 rentals than a song does at 99 cents.

But one can also look at DVDs as a triumph of speedbump DRM. it's a hassle but not impossible to rip a DVD and transmit it to someone else. With Blue ray the content size alone makes it harder to transmit. So you'd think they would have noticed this. But the MPAA has not. Look at their recent proposal to have you pay extra to have your movies on disk be converted to portable formats.

This gifting idea seems to address this issue. How can I share a digital movie with a friend?

I wonder if this idea is connected to the upcoming "Apple TV" rumors. Sure would be nice to have that built right in to the TV for totally transparent media library sharing.

Re:Gifting is insightful (2)

icebike (68054) | more than 2 years ago | (#39838997)

If apple can solve this simplicity issue, then it bodes well for the industry and the consumer.

Actually, this issue can't be solved by Apple. All it can do is monopolize their proprietary solution, and tie you even tighter to their ecosystem. As long as Apple has to agree that you own a book or a song, you have no ownership. (Apple won't be around for ever). Ownership of digital media is an illusion. You really only have a book keeping entry on an Apple computer. Nothing more. Same for a Barns & Noble ebook. Its just an entry in a computer database.

A real solution for digital ownership would necessarily involve some form media encrypted with an owners key, which would be replaced when the media changed ownership. Think PGP encrypted email. That way, when you gift it to me, you encrypt it with my key, and re-write or erase your copy. But because its digital, any such scheme could eventually be hacked, perhaps as simply as restoring a backed up copy. This might not matter, because the effort involved in mass duplication with millions of users keys would be equivalent to photocopying books - possible but not practical. But until you replace all viewing technology, simply stripping the encryption would get us right back to the current situation.

No one has come up with any generic method that of media ownership transfer that does not require some third party to agree that you own it in the first place. There is no surprise here, the same exists for all major purchases in the physical world, Property Deeds, car titles. Only inexpensive items are consigned to mere "possession rules" in the physical rules.

It seems a toss-up whether such a system could be developed that allows third-party-free gifting and transfers of digital media before the whole concept of copyright collapses of its own weight.

Re:Gifting is insightful (1)

cpu6502 (1960974) | more than 2 years ago | (#39839189)

>>> (Apple won't be around for ever). Ownership of digital media is an illusion. You really only have a book keeping entry on an Apple computer.

On the flip side:
It would be impossible to own tens of thousands of books in the past. Eventually you would need to throw some of them away, or else run out of room in your house. So even with physical books, nobody kept them forever.

The invention of the e-book now makes it possible to own 10,000+ without any problem. (E-books also make it possible to get books for free; I bought a kindle and have yet to spend a single penny. Too busy reading the free public domain works.)

I can't believe I just defended Apple.
That's like saying, "Yeah buying a Honda
Acura for $35,000 is a bargain." (shrug)

Re:Gifting is insightful (1)

jbolden (176878) | more than 2 years ago | (#39843385)

Actually a real solution would be government regulation of online digital content which requires transfer in the case the library is taken down and has something like an insurance company that has an additional copy. This is what was done with records we do care about like stock certificates or deeds for centuries.

Re:Gifting is insightful (1)

stephanruby (542433) | more than 2 years ago | (#39840781)

This satisfies the idea that the creator has control of the copy number (and hence meaning to the word copyright) and yet I have complete control over my copy including sharing it.

Complete control? And what about those of us with no iTunes account, no iPhone, and no iPad. Could you really give me or sell me your purchased music (assuming you really wanted to for some reason)?

Re:Gifting is insightful (1)

jbolden (176878) | more than 2 years ago | (#39843397)

And a generation ago if you didn't have a tape player I couldn't give you cassette tapes. If you don't have the technology, nor a transference system you can't get transference.

Re:Please don't (0)

cpu6502 (1960974) | more than 2 years ago | (#39838845)

>>> gift giver had funded what Apple is doing in the world

Your opinion of Apple offends me, especially since I spend $2000 every other year upgrading to a new Mac, and you make me feel foolish. Therefore I will mod it down:
-1 Uncomfortable Truth

Re:Please don't (1)

spire3661 (1038968) | more than 2 years ago | (#39838933)

And what do you do with the old mac? O thats right you can sell it for almost as much as you paid for it. You cant even get a G5 mac for under $250 used and that is a dead architecture.

Re:Please don't (1)

MagusSlurpy (592575) | more than 2 years ago | (#39839057)

Since the G5 sold for $2K new and now sells for $250, I take umbrage with your definition of "almost as much as you paid for it."

(FYI, you can find dozens of G5s on eBay for ~$150, which seems to be the approximate price that all computers stop depreciating at, regardless of manufacturer)

Hope you get indignant... (1)

Petersko (564140) | more than 2 years ago | (#39839299)

...for every other gift you receive with origins you might disagree with, be it sneakers from overseas or any form of plastic.

Re:Hope you get indignant... (1)

ShieldW0lf (601553) | more than 2 years ago | (#39840443)

...for every other gift you receive with origins you might disagree with, be it sneakers from overseas or any form of plastic.

As a matter of fact, sometimes I do. The degree to which I bite my tongue varies. Most people avoid the whole thing by giving me things like seeds, tools, hand crafted items, vintage clothing and scotch whiskey.

Integrity is real, you know.

Re:Hope you get indignant... (1)

Petersko (564140) | more than 2 years ago | (#39842487)

Fair enough. Well put.

Re:Please don't (1)

sinan (10073) | more than 2 years ago | (#39840587)

We have given 7 iPads to friends and relatives as gifts. But we made sure they would appreciate them before we gave. Thank you for reminding us that.

A Holy Grail of Prank Hacks . . . (0)

PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) | more than 2 years ago | (#39838729)

1) Hack the platform.

2) "Rick roll" every iOwner on the planet.

3) Profit . . .

4) . . . for Rick.

Is this news? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39838753)

People have been able to gift through iTunes for ages

Re:Is this news? (1)

green1 (322787) | more than 2 years ago | (#39838911)

but now they can make sharing a digital copy just as inconvenient as sharing a physical one. All by the magic of near field communication, you'll have to actually meet up with the person to gift it.

Of course just wait until the content cartels get wind of this!

Re:Is this news? (1)

icebike (68054) | more than 2 years ago | (#39839099)

but now they can make sharing a digital copy just as inconvenient as sharing a physical one. All by the magic of near field communication, you'll have to actually meet up with the person to gift it.

Of course just wait until the content cartels get wind of this!

Way to Not read the article.

Email gifting is also covered in the patent. (As if Apple ever thought that up first).

i never pay for apps or music or movies (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39838779)

It's just bits on a flash device. Why in the hell would anyone pay for that? Fuck the jews who run the media companies.

Awesome! (3, Funny)

AngryDeuce (2205124) | more than 2 years ago | (#39838805)

That's totally easier than just downloading a DRM-free copy of the work and giving someone a copy via email or even sneakernet...

Oh, right, we're still pretending that there's something morally wrong with copying a bunch of ones and zeros that have no inherent value and convey no rights to the purchaser regarding First-Sale doctrine...

Re:Awesome! (5, Insightful)

icebike (68054) | more than 2 years ago | (#39838827)

copying a bunch of ones and zeros that have no inherent value

I'm confused. Why would anyone copy a collection of ones and zeros that had no value?
Doesn't the very act of copying them prove that there is an inherent value in the mind of the person making the copy?

Re:Awesome! (0)

gmaslov (1983830) | more than 2 years ago | (#39838931)

The work represented by the bits has value. Any particular copy of them does not.

Re:Awesome! (4, Insightful)

icebike (68054) | more than 2 years ago | (#39839131)

The work represented by the bits has value. Any particular copy of them does not.

Clearly any particular copy of them does hold value, or there would only be one copy. Someone took the time to make that additional copy. They did so because the second copy would have value. In fact it would have the same value as the first copy.

To suggest otherwise is to suggest mindless copying takes place almost at random and by accident.

Re:Awesome! (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39839613)

Shh! No reason to bring thoughtful rationality into this circlejerk.

Re:Awesome! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39840605)

The work represented by the bits has value. Any particular copy of them does not.

Clearly any particular copy of them does hold value, or there would only be one copy. Someone took the time to make that additional copy. They did so because the second copy would have value. In fact it would have the same value as the first copy.

To suggest otherwise is to suggest mindless copying takes place almost at random and by accident.

Leave a 6 year old within arm's reach of a copier, I guarantee there will be random, mindless copying being done. Oh, right, *digital* copying.

Leave a 3 year old within arm's reach of an iPad....

Re:Awesome! (1)

gmaslov (1983830) | more than 2 years ago | (#39841235)

I don't think that's right. Is a hard drive with 100 copies of a song more valuable than a hard drive with one copy of that song? I would say no, in which case the only value the additional copies can have is zero.

Re:Awesome! (1)

icebike (68054) | more than 2 years ago | (#39841301)

I don't think that's right. Is a hard drive with 100 copies of a song more valuable than a hard drive with one copy of that song? I would say no, in which case the only value the additional copies can have is zero.

Interesting point.

If a runaway script fills your drive with the same song a hundred times each additional copy would not have value.
But a hundred copies of a song on a hundred different people's hard drives seems to make each copy as valuable as the first.
(given similar taste in music).

But the main point here, is that if someone goes to the trouble of copying a song, clearly the copy has value to that person.
That people intentionally spend time doing something is a dead giveaway that they value the result.

The Pirate Party has a proposal out to eliminate penalties for private non commercial copying [copyrightreform.eu] . But even they do not go to the extreme of claiming that the copies have no value.

Re:Awesome! (1)

uglyduckling (103926) | more than 2 years ago | (#39843121)

You can apply that 'logic' to numerous situations and reach the same faulty conclusion. If you've ever worked in the catering trade, you might have been faced with a container full of fillet steaks. I might think a few has value to me, but once I get above the number I could comfortably eat before they rotted, they're of no value - to me. But if I put a board outside the restaurant and start selling them, they have immense value. Many goods, tangible and intangible, fungible or not, have more value when distributed to multiple people than when held in by one person.

Re:Awesome! (1)

MagusSlurpy (592575) | more than 2 years ago | (#39839069)

Doesn't the very act of copying them prove that there is an inherent value in the mind of the person making the copy?

No, I do stupid shit all the time that has no inherent value beyond the entertainment factor, like copying others' posts on the internet.

Re:Awesome! (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39839211)

Doesn't the very act of copying them prove that there is an inherent value in the mind of the person making the copy?

No, I do stupid shit all the time that has no inherent value beyond the entertainment factor, like copying others' posts on the internet.

Re:Awesome! (0)

LordLucless (582312) | more than 2 years ago | (#39839971)

I'm confused. Why would anyone copy a collection of ones and zeros that had no value?

They do have value. They have no inherent value, which was the distinction the OP made. Just like a coin, which has an inherent value (the value of its component metals) much lower than it's actual value (the price of goods people are willing to exchange for it).

Re:Awesome! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39842385)

I think the answer is a bunch of ones and zeros has no value unless they represent machine code compiled from source code under the GPL.

Re:Awesome! (1)

boaworm (180781) | more than 2 years ago | (#39838955)

Oh, right, we're still pretending that there's something morally wrong with copying a bunch of ones and zeros that have no inherent value

If they have no inherent value, why would you want to copy them?

trayboon protest (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39838807)

yo yo de iz diz protizzzest tuday fo trayboon martin so yallz muthafuckin niggaz betta get outda here and be muthafuckin marchin bitchez

brutha trayboon RIP

no justice no peace

NFC is merely an option (1)

icebike (68054) | more than 2 years ago | (#39838809)

Reading the story you find that the NFC part of this is merely an optional part of a much broader patent-grab. Other options include email, which is already well established as a gifting mechanism.

The real attempt here is to monopolize a method of transferring licensed media from one person to another. Of course, they require a server to be involved, to validate that the gifted media is removed from one person's account as it is added to another. Nook already had lending of ebooks, and by extension gifting, other than the book publishers would not allow Barnes and Noble to allow gifting, continuing (by edict) to enforce control their property rights after the first sale.

Its questionable whether Apple will be more successful at prying IP holders hands free of this post-sale control than was B&N. Especially with the DOJ looking into their collusion with publishers.

Re:NFC is merely an option (1)

Nerdfest (867930) | more than 2 years ago | (#39839675)

At least it's NFC. When Jobs was still around they were talking about a proprietary technology. This whole thing is just a way to lock people into the iTunes ecosystem. If they open it up so it can be used with any device, and across multiple hosting providers I'd be interested.

Re:NFC is merely an option (1)

Myopic (18616) | more than 2 years ago | (#39844479)

WTF is NFC? Both authors and editors should keep in mind that all acronyms used in the headline (or story) should be defined in the story.

Re:NFC is merely an option (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39844737)

WTF is NFC? Both authors and editors should keep in mind that all acronyms used in the headline (or story) should be defined in the story.

NFC = Near Field Communication

Re:NFC is merely an option (1)

icebike (68054) | more than 2 years ago | (#39846843)

And people who read slashdot should understand they are using the internet, and it takes less long to search the term NFC [google.com] than it takes to post the question.

Come on, with an /. number that low, this can't be news to you.

Sounds like a great way for Apple to make money... (0)

rastoboy29 (807168) | more than 2 years ago | (#39838815)

...on what should in most cases probably be free.

"Gifting" a file is about as silly as "purchasing" one, in my book.

Re:Sounds like a great way for Apple to make money (2)

green1 (322787) | more than 2 years ago | (#39838943)

Nothing wrong with purchasing one, as long as you are then allowed to do anything at all that you want with it once you have. What is unacceptable is the current state of affairs where the media cartels refuse to clarify if you are buying of licensing, trying to get the best of both worlds
They say it's only a license to do something very specific any time you try to do something else with it (ie they claim it was only licensed for your home computer, and you shouldn't be allowed to move it to an MP3 player for example) and yet if you loose or delete the file, they refuse to let you have another one, because it was a purchase and not a license...
Can't have it both ways...(unless you can afford enough politicians)

Re:Sounds like a great way for Apple to make money (1)

jbolden (176878) | more than 2 years ago | (#39843409)

Good point about them not doing either. Again this is the sort of thing regulation could easily handle.

It is not so much a question of DRM as it is a question of a lack of agreed upon standards and mechanisms. Amazon for example does allow you to download again and again. Apple with applications does. With songs they've stopped using DRM so it has become a purchase.

Re:Sounds like a great way for Apple to make money (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39839647)

Not paying someone the amount they ask to be compensated for their work sounds silly to me. Nobody is forcing me to use or be entertained by that content, so if I don't want to pay for it, I don't have to purchase it.

Expecting people to keep making you nice things after it no longer provides them a livelihood because you want it without paying for it... that sounds silly to me. But maybe I'm just being naive.

Re:Sounds like a great way for Apple to make money (1)

rastoboy29 (807168) | more than 2 years ago | (#39839867)

You make a fair (and conventional) point.

It seems to me that part of the problem is that you have to pay for it before you really know what you're buying.  So personally, I feel shafted rather a lot.

But people made lots of art before there was copyright, and currently you'll see a lot of bands promoting themselves on the pirate bay (check their front page) quite voluntarily.

I think you do not realize that there is a box you are thinking inside of ;-)

That's "Giving", not "Giving" (2)

rueger (210566) | more than 2 years ago | (#39838837)

The essence of giving is that I have an item, and freely pass it on to another individual.

What Apple offers is a way to buy something and have it delivered to someone else, al the while keeping it within Apple's steely grip.

Somehow that doesn't feel like "giving".

Re:That's "Giving", not "Giving" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39839367)

If it's DRM free does it really matter? Granted not everything that Apple sells in their digital stores is DRM free, and a lot of it they have no control over, but if it were a music file, one could do whatever they liked with it as it wouldn't be locked down. Given Amazon's dominance in eBooks mirroring Apple's own dominance in music, I imagine that it won't be terribly long until the publishers are forced to remove the DRM as a way to combat Amazon's control of the market. Video might take longer, as there's no player currently controlling a large portion of the market, but that could change. Apps probably don't matter much since the only devices you can run them on are made by Apple.

Re:That's "Giving", not "Giving" (1)

AmiMoJo (196126) | more than 2 years ago | (#39843435)

Even if you are tied up with your pants around your ankles and a ball gag in your mouth the word "giving" is still syntactically correct. It's not something I'd want my friends to give me though.

Hm. (1, Interesting)

ScrewMaster (602015) | more than 2 years ago | (#39838865)

"This 'gifting' of which you speak ... is that anything like 'squirting'"? -- Steve Ballmer

Where's the patent (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39838927)

"Wherein one agent (e.g a person) transfers an item (the "gift") to another agent..."

What about promoting progress (1)

TheMonkeyCant (2569347) | more than 2 years ago | (#39838973)

This disturbs me in a number of ways...

Shouldn't a patent promote progress in some way... Apple is trying to involve NFC and make the whole gift giving experience a bit more interactive.

Wait, this really seems geared toward making sure that gifts that include DRM are going to work... um, really... Shouldn't DRM be fixed or removed if it's not doing what it should be... why do we need another patented technology just to make it work like it should in the first place.

I'm guilty of not reading through the entire patent and I'm no patent system expert, so I may just be off base here... Isn't this all existing techology? wouldn't that make this a business process... I thought business processes were not patent-able...

it used to be shit easy, called bluetooth OBEX (1)

gl4ss (559668) | more than 2 years ago | (#39839005)

it was so easy to transfer programs to your friends. just obex them over, several programs came in with built in sharing, no need for internet access either. it's just amazing how much s60 1.2 did better than any of the modern versions, including indeed modern incarnation of s60.

you know why it had to die? appstores and content control - that the operators and manufacturers didn't manage to create unified appstores untill recently doesn't mean they were actively dumping money into it since 2002. and what do you think sms selling etc was? awful when an user can give easily a ringtone to his friend instead of the friend paying five euros for mms delivery of a shitty 20 second fair use lenght clip.

(how was it killed? bullshit reasoning that it's perfect for malware etc etc.. sure it is, if you accept anything from anyone on purpose. see skulls malware for example. funnily enough it was usually reported to be spreading at sports festivals etc. where av company had a booth. always where they had a booth. skulls was pretty hastily put together anyways.)

Been done (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39839335)

Prior Art: See Steam purchase as gift option.

Then why couldn't I do it? (1)

dpbsmith (263124) | more than 2 years ago | (#39840069)

I don't want to get into the rights and lefts of it all, one of my personal frustrations with Apple is that while I've given my granddaughter "songs" any number of times ("gift this song,") when I thought she'd enjoy a funny little application called "The Moron Test," the Apple Store wouldn't let me. Took me days of slow email-like exchanges with Apple for them to finally get back to me and say "It can't be done."

They control the platform, they set the rules, you can do it with a song, why not an app? If they don't want to do it themselves, why are they off patenting it so that nobody else can? Seems pretty dog-in-the-manger...

DDoll (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39840207)

Itself backwards, firs7 organization

That's "Giving", not "Gifting" (1)

MattCC (551250) | more than 2 years ago | (#39841763)

Who invented this term "gifting" and what's wrong with just giving?

what they should really do (1)

slashmydots (2189826) | more than 2 years ago | (#39841941)

and yet they won't let you "gift" yourself your own music library if your hard drive fails and it was improperly backed up. I know people who that happened to and honestly, if I used iTunes, I would have purposely not backed up my music because I would have assumed it could be redownloaded later if anything happened to it. Maybe they should implement that feature before they start letting people gift songs to each other. Although, I bring this up because I smell an exploit. Lost your library? Gift all your licenses to someone you know then have them immediately gift it back. You could obviously logically redownload them since they'd be an incoming gift that's not in your library.
Burning a CD from iTunes strips the DRM so why wouldn't people simply "gift" them a CD and keep the original? lol. Knowing them, they'll find a way to DRM that up too.

already seen at the theater , lame lame lame (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39846203)

prior art : in time (2011) , do iphones even have NFC yet ? the only thing apples executives are managing to do is confirming they like good sci-fi , but as for promoting new tech ....... or inovation ..... they seriously missed the train and are holding other on the dock

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