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The History of Hacking DRM

Zonk posted about 8 years ago | from the proud-tradition dept.

197

phaedo00 writes "Ars Technica writer Nate Anderson has penned an in-depth look into past DRM-crackings and what the future looks like for people who are vehemently anti-DRM: 'Like a creeping fog, DRM smothers more and more media in its clammy embrace, but the sun still shines down on isolated patches of the landscape. This isn't always due to the decisions of corporate executives; often it's the work of hackers who devote considerable skill to cracking the digital locks that guard everything from DVDs to e-books. Their reasons are complicated and range from the philosophical to the criminal, but their goals are the same: no more DRM.'"

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197 comments

Anti-DRM? (5, Insightful)

rwven (663186) | about 8 years ago | (#15752281)

I don't know anyone who's NOT Anti-DRM. All DRM does is make buying music miserable for the people who are doing it legally. People who don't care about the legality of it will just torrent the CD or get it off some other file sharing network. They avoid the headache of DRM as well as the "cost" of being legal...

The only way DRM will ever be plausable will be if they produce a DRM'd codec that plays on anything. People are sick of buying CD's on itunes and not being able to play them on their other players...as well as other music services trying to play on itunes.

DRM that plays on anything? (1, Insightful)

MarkByers (770551) | about 8 years ago | (#15752331)

"The only way DRM will ever be plausable will be if they produce a DRM'd codec that plays on anything."

Doesn't that sort of defeat the purpose of DRM though? If you did that, people could buy songs from one place but a player from another. The whole point of DRM is to stop that happening.

Re:DRM that plays on anything? (4, Insightful)

IamTheRealMike (537420) | about 8 years ago | (#15752514)

No, the point of DRM is to prevent supply from being infinite, because a market in which there is infinite supply is a failed market.

The fact that Apple and Microsoft can't resist abusing it to promote sales of iPods/Windows is unrelated and not inherant to DRM.

Re:DRM that plays on anything? (1)

plasmacutter (901737) | about 8 years ago | (#15752783)

Water is practically infinite.. it covers 70% of our planet.

Yet a market still exists for evian.

Hollywood's product is significantly different from bit torrented mkv's made from hollywood's product.

Thus there will always be a market for those who seek increased quality and convenience over price.

Re:DRM that plays on anything? (2, Insightful)

contrapunctus (907549) | about 8 years ago | (#15753309)

Potable water is not infinite.

Re:DRM that plays on anything? (1)

plasmacutter (901737) | about 8 years ago | (#15753378)

neither is air, but it may as well be.

Re:DRM that plays on anything? (2, Insightful)

mattkinabrewmindspri (538862) | about 8 years ago | (#15752790)

You're both right.

The content production companies, such as the music and movie companies, want DRM to prevent the unlimited distribution of entertainment or information.

The content distribution companies, like Apple, want DRM to lock people into their other products, like the iPod.

Not So (1)

Srin Tuar (147269) | about 8 years ago | (#15753011)

It is the government's grant of copyright which makes the bits effectively finite, NOT DRM.

If its goal is to limit supply, DRM is a failed technology concept:
Thah would be much like an attempt to make dry water.
You cannot show someone something without them being able to see it.
You cannot tell someone a secret without allowing them to know it.

So why would they push such a flawed technology: the true goals are likely much more insidious.
I believe they are more along the lines of controlling what you are allowed to view, and
controlling who is allowed to produce content.

Re:Not So (1)

IamTheRealMike (537420) | about 8 years ago | (#15753330)

It is the government's grant of copyright which makes the bits effectively finite, NOT DRM.

Yes but as the RIAA discovered actually using the courts of law to enforce copyright is a losing proposition. Too many violators and court time is too expensive. So DRM makes sense for copyright owners because it cuts the number of violators in a cost effective fashion.

You cannot tell someone a secret without allowing them to know it.

Obviously, I can circumvent DRM by simply humming the tune to myself. Copyright and DRM are not absolutes. You can "violate" copyright to a certain extent under fair use rights. You can evade DRM by using the analog hole or your memory.

A failed market is one that is so inefficient it's no longer doing what it's supposed to do. Copyright and DRM are nasty hacks around the limitations of the market, and they improve its efficiency enough that people can be full time musicians/authors/movie-directors/game-developers/ whatever. They don't have to give it 100% efficiency for it to be worthwhile.

The so-called "hackers" who want to eliminate DRM for philosophical reasons would do better to engage in some economic R&D. If there was something like the market but which worked in the presence of infinite supply, nobody would care about DRM. It wouldn't be worth the (considerable) cost, effort and risk. But so far nobody figured out a better way to pay for content creation than a hacked-up market.

Re:DRM that plays on anything? (1)

evilmousse (798341) | about 8 years ago | (#15753096)


'failed'? or did you mean 'unprofitable'?

Re:DRM that plays on anything? (4, Interesting)

IamTheRealMike (537420) | about 8 years ago | (#15753284)

"Failed market" is an economic term. Informally it means a market where the usual workings have broken down for some reason so it's no longer operating efficiently.

For instance operating systems are a failed market because network effects make it economically unviable to break the Windows monopoly.

In the absence of copyright (and a way to practically enforce it - DRM), creative works would be a failed market because supply is infinite, therefore pushing prices down to zero. The creator of the creative work gets nothing in return for production of that good so, the market has failed.

Failed markets are very common. A market is quite a fragile thing, which is why we have lots of regulation designed to protect it and bracket it (like anti-trust law). I would say many of the more stupid errors of the 20th century were due to inappropriate application of a market, which then failed .... the UK rail privatisation is a good example of that.

Failed markets aren't necessarily unprofitable. In the case of failed DRM then the 'failed market' becomes unprofitable in the classical sense because nobody makes any money. In the case of operating systems it's obviously very profitable for the dominant monopoly.

Re:Anti-DRM? (5, Insightful)

Darundal (891860) | about 8 years ago | (#15752389)

I know several people who are pro-drm. They are also the least technically literate people I know, have next to no experiance with any digital music players or services, and they generally assume that because someone is accused of something by a company or the government, they are automatically guilty.

In other words, they are joe consumer incarnate. They don't follow the issues, they are unaware that their is even any type of debate over this subject, and and they are unlikely to ever encounter any issues with DRM because they all use Windows and are the type to be highly loyal to a brand, so probably wouldn't ever buy a music player from another company.

While I myself am vehemently anti-DRM, your post assumes two things;

A: Everyone is aware that there is even an issue, and will become frustrated by DRM

B: Even if someone becomes aware and frustrated, they would attempt to use other channels unconcerned with industry FUD and would know what those other options are or where to find out about them

Re:Anti-DRM? (2, Funny)

rwven (663186) | about 8 years ago | (#15752408)

Let me rephrase that then... I don't know anyone with more than an ounce of braincells who is NOT Anti-DRM....

Re:Anti-DRM? (1)

dada21 (163177) | about 8 years ago | (#15752477)

That is ridiculous. As I said in this post [slashdot.org] , I am not anti-DRM, nor am I pro-DRM. I am for the right to perform your labor in the way you want, as long as your customer is willing to accept any reductions in their rights (usually for a discount). DRM is not bad, not evil, and definitely not anti-consumer. If a DRM'd product or service allows a company to produce a product for a customer at a HUGE discount, isn't the price decrease pro-consumer? No one can know each and every consumer's desired outcome of a product or service -- you're just afraid of the State-mandates that back up DRM, not the DRM itself.

They don't follow the issues, they are unaware that their is even any type of debate over this subject, and and they are unlikely to ever encounter any issues with DRM because they all use Windows and are the type to be highly loyal to a brand, so probably wouldn't ever buy a music player from another company.


To paraphrase this quote: They don't care to waste time following non-issues in their lives, they're extremely happy with the product they have, and the price is perfect so they're not in a rush to change anything. The problem isn't the DRM or the consumer, in your case, though, it is the law that reduces your private-property rights: you are not free to act and labor in the way you want to with your time (you are not free to waste time trying to remove the DRM).

While I myself am vehemently anti-DRM, your post assumes two things;


You forgot one: if an individual or business wants to obfuscate something in order to sell more of the items themselves, they're free to, ignoring the laws. If an individual or business wants to de-obfuscate something they've bought in order to learn to duplicate it, they should be free to, ignoring the laws. Again, it is the LAW that is evil, not the DRM. Most people on slashdot are confusing one three letter word for another.

Re:Anti-DRM? (1)

packeteer (566398) | about 8 years ago | (#15752647)

Do you really believe that when DRM is implemented that will bring down prices of consumer products?

If you think that you dont understand how economics works. The price that is set for a particular goods or service is not at ALL based on the price of making it. The price that something is sold at is based on the highest price someone can get and still sell the most of the commodity.

Re:Anti-DRM? (4, Insightful)

CastrTroy (595695) | about 8 years ago | (#15753140)

DRM doesn't make anything any cheaper. iTunes still cost as much as a regular CD. Sure you can just buy one song, but for the entire album, the price is pretty much the same (sometimes more on iTunes). Plus you get a lower quality version, no physical CD, no Case, no Liner notes that are already printed on a commercial quality printing press (not some crappy liner notes you have to printe out on your crappy inkjet), and they pay pretty much 0 production cost. Oh, and the music is locked down a lot more than it is on a regular CD. For iTunes to be worth it, it would have to be down around 25 cents a song.

Re:Anti-DRM? (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15752588)

"I know several people who are pro-drm...they are joe consumer incarnate. They don't follow the issues, they are unaware that their is even any type of debate over this subject"

And I am a technical proponent of DRM.

Do I like it? Fuck no. It gets in my way. Its annoying. I occasionally lose data.

And who do I blame?

The Fucking Information Wants To Be Free internet-fuckwad cabal.

I don't blame the companies. I have a well known name in the type of software I put out and I've generally put out my works at lower than the 'professional' packages -- without protection. Who's work do I find on eBay? Mine or the big guy? I'm more likely to get ripped than the big guy because I only charged $30 for my stuff where the other guy is selling theirs for $130 -- I've heard pirates tell me that its not like its that big of a deal because its not 'professional' software (and the only difference is the price).

Gotta tell you, the last upgrade I put out with DRM on it -- sales increased 400%. Its not that big of a market to attract the crackers, and by the time they get around to it, I'll have moved on to another system of DRM (I could care less if someone is trading an older package...too far down the long tail for my needs).

If it weren't for the whole crowd screaming Software Piracy Is Not Theft, I'd be totally for unDRM'd software. My old software is put out free and I'm starting to give away the source to software that isn't too close to the current code base...but until a maturity comes over software users, I'm totally pro-DRM.

Re:Anti-DRM? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15753206)

Wait a minute...

You seem to think if it weren't for the anti-DRM people, you wouldn't need DRM...

Bullshit. People pirate stuff (on the whole) because they want free stuff, not because "information wants to be free". If by "maturity" you mean "everyone spontaneously deciding to follow the laws with no incentives", then sure. But this has nothing to do with the "information wants to be free" people.

Re:Anti-DRM? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15753280)

"You seem to think if it weren't for the anti-DRM people, you wouldn't need DRM..."

Where the fuck did I say that?

*LEARN TO READ*

I said I went DRM because people were stealing and selling my creation.

DRM has so far kept anyone from breaking my application. I'm not against Anti-DRM people, I'm against pirate and thieves and low-lifes...of which there seems to be a large subset of one another.

This is entirely because of people wanting to steal other peoples information that DRM exists. If people respected other peoples property, I'd doubt DRM would have the relevance it does today.

Re:Anti-DRM? (1)

IAmTheDave (746256) | about 8 years ago | (#15752600)

A: Everyone is aware that there is even an issue, and will become frustrated by DRM

Well, I think that hardly anyone outside of this circle is aware there is an issue, but I am almost certain that almost everyone will eventually be frustrated by it - whether it's the inability to put purchased music on the iPod they received for Christmas, or the inability to rip a DVD, or the automatic deletion of a movie on their DVR, or a DVD recording of a HD show being downcast to low def without their knowledge, or...

As DRM becomes more smothering, it smothers more people. It's not something many are aware of - it's something almost anyone that participates in the digital culture WILL eventually butt up against.

Re:Anti-DRM? (1)

westlake (615356) | about 8 years ago | (#15753320)

whether it's the inability to put purchased music on the iPod they received for Christmas or the inability to rip a DVD, or the automatic deletion of a movie on their DVR, or a DVD recording of a HD show being downcast to low def without their knowledge, or...

These scenarios may not play out as you expect:

Assuming the ICT is invoked, a "degraded" recording will still output the original digital sound track and significantly higher resolution video than an american standard DVD.

Thar's not the end of the world if you happen to own an aging first generation HDTV.

Re:Anti-DRM? (1)

inject_hotmail.com (843637) | about 8 years ago | (#15753365)

I know several people who are pro-drm.

Obviously, as a slashdotter, you have not done your duty. :)

Re:Anti-DRM? (1)

SkipNewarkDE (584096) | about 8 years ago | (#15752426)

People are sick of buying CD's on itunes and not being able to play them on their other players...as well as other music services trying to play on itunes.
Isn't this kind of the beta vs. vhs thing all over again?

Re:Anti-DRM? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15752868)

Re-phrase please: Technically-Inclined people are sick of DRM.

The fact of the matter is that iTunes is very popular and continues to be so. Just because the techies don't like it doesn't mean people everywhere are sick of it. Not true - if people were sick of DRM on iTunes that business would simply fold - it hasn't yet nor does it look like it's going to anytime soon so your apparently incorrect in your assessment.

DRM circumvents copyright limits (3, Insightful)

GodWasAnAlien (206300) | about 8 years ago | (#15752432)

Yes, I am Anti-DRM. It attempts to circumvent any publishing control limits allowed by the government.
Copyright law is already about 100 years longer than what most people would consider a reasonable "limited time". DRM attempts to remove the monopoly limit entirely.

Re:Anti-DRM? (0, Flamebait)

SkipNewarkDE (584096) | about 8 years ago | (#15752509)

I don't know anyone who's NOT Anti-DRM. All DRM does is make buying music miserable for the people who are doing it legally.
Don't you KNOW IT. I cry everytime I click that one-click purchase button in iTunes to download a song. It's like crawling over broken glass when I have to take the extra ten seconds to authorize one of my computers to play my music the first time. Such a drag. It's an even bigger heap of misery when I need to deauthorize one of my five machines so that I can play my music on another machine. I wail everytime I need to burn a copy of a CD and I hit that 7 CD limit, and am forced to go through the extra ten seconds it takes to shuffle the songs around into a new playlist. It's awful.

Re:Anti-DRM? (1)

tcc3 (958644) | about 8 years ago | (#15752679)

What if you want to use it on your media center pc? Or Linux? What if you have a non ipod mp3 player? Apples drm is less offensive than some others, but its still obtrusive enough that people hate it. The funny thig is that if MS used an ipod like advantage in a market to control or limit another market (like music or video distribution) folks would be grabbing the pitchforks and torches and screaming "Kill the monopoly!!"

Re:Anti-DRM? (1)

MrNixon (28945) | about 8 years ago | (#15752681)

Problem is, you can only deauthorize 5 Computers a year. So if you're a student working in a computer lab, you can't authorize your music in different machines through the year, because at some point, you're going to run out of deauthorizations.

Then what?

Re:Anti-DRM? (4, Insightful)

kimvette (919543) | about 8 years ago | (#15752789)

You're being sarcastic now, but what happens if/when you dump (OS X|Windows) for Linux or BSD? Or, when the day arrives when you come to realize (much like Philip J. Fry did) that the Dave Matthews Band doesn't rock, and decide to exercise your right of first sale and sell (as in transfer ownership) your property (the music you bought) to another person? Oops, guess what? You don't actually own anything to transfer now.

Or, what happens if/when Apple goes belly-up or is forced by the music mafia (RIAA) to shut down iTunes and quit the music business? Good-bye music collection, so sad, too bad. You'll be pissing and moaning over DRM then.

Granted those are hypothetical scenarios, but much like Divx, it can definitely happen, only this time around everyone with a clue will be continually saying "told ya so" like a bunch of nine-year-olds.

A question (1)

hypethetica (739528) | about 8 years ago | (#15752657)

Quoth the article:
"AACS relies on the well-established AES (with 128-bit keys) to safeguard the disc data. Just like DVD players, HD DVD and Blu-ray drives will come with a set of Device Keys handed out to the manufacturers by AACS LA. Unlike the CSS encryption used in DVDs, though, AACS has a built-in method for revoking sets of keys that are cracked and made public."

So what happens when someone cracks ALL the keys and posts every one of them publicly?

Re:A question (1)

spyfrog (552673) | about 8 years ago | (#15752784)

Then we will all smile. ;-)

Re:A question (1)

sethstorm (512897) | about 8 years ago | (#15753097)

Product Recall (of course, for some safety problem).

Re:A question (1)

CastrTroy (595695) | about 8 years ago | (#15753184)

Well, I imagine that if all the keys need to be revoked, they will either give up and just let us copy everything, or they will release some sort of upgrade disc that can be read only by the players (yeah right) that will have new keys on it. This could go on for sometime, where every 3 months you have to go out and get a new disc of keys. Here's a question. If a disc is encoded with 1 key, and that key gets revoked, is that disc unplayable in old players? in all new players? or does it not disable anything at all, and just cause no new discs to be printed with that key?

Re:Anti-DRM? (1)

sevinkey (448480) | about 8 years ago | (#15752692)

I'm not 100% anti-DRM... but I did have to think long-and-hard before becoming the head of software development for a DRM license clearing house. Main reason I was okay with it was because it was bringing content to the Internet that would have not otherwise been put out because the owners are paranoid.

After working there, I think DRM is a great solution for rentals. I think its a load of garbage if they are selling permanent access to content at the same price as physical merchandise. It's not reliable enough for that.

Now don't get me started on Media Center Edition's DRM for the broadcast flag. I just turned my MCE boxes and cancelled my cable TV because I got sick of losing content I legitimately paid for. At least when I lose my licenses for iTunes content, it lets me download it again. If HBO fails on MCE, I lose my episode of Sopranos permanently.

Re:Anti-DRM? (1)

lowrydr310 (830514) | about 8 years ago | (#15752780)

It's not just downloaded music where DRM gets very annoying. My shiny new Treo 700P (through Sprint) is loaded with DRM, and I'm guessing many other devices are as well. I downloaded some pictures, and they're showing up as 'locked'. I can't share these pictuers with anyone and I can't even transfer them to my own computer because they're locked.

I also don't like restricted PDF documents. I wanted to quote a paragraph from a PDF that I have and send it to a friend of mine, but whoever published the document restricted text copying, forcing me to type it out by hand. In this case it wasn't a big deal, rather just a minor inconvenience.

PS: When is someone going to release a stable linux distribution for the Treo 700P? I know someone has it running on the 650, but last I heard it wasn't very stable and there weren't many applications for it. Palm OS isn't the best thing out there, though I'll take it over Windows Mobile any day (despite the fact that my Palm crashes a lot)

Obligatory (1)

fullphaser (939696) | about 8 years ago | (#15752284)

I find your lack of faith in the hacking community disturbing

Re:Obligatory (1)

pawn63295 (964760) | about 8 years ago | (#15752526)

(DMR = Crap)

To the people doin what needs to be done like hacking DRM's i thank you as a matter of fact i thank you on behalf of every computer user. Although DRM will probably never hold because of the resistince all of us give it, but I think we need to go farther than just DRM laws.

Without us youd still be asking yourself what irc server its on

Re:Obligatory (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15752929)

this is the smartest thing ive heard all day, though faith is a well subjective word, the only thing that has never been FULLY cracked/hacked is Starforce, and even that has a few cracks and hacks for it if you wanna jump through loops(ive done it, and id definitly say its not newbie friendly, but its possible nonetheless), i havent actually bought music(unless its a indy label) in at least 4 years becasue thats when i first realized how expensive it is for such bad music, and not to mention like 2 seconds after i stopped drm and shit came up and the riaa sued little girls and shit, i mean cmon who wants to buy from that, want GOOD music buy indy CD's and there like 5 bucks, want corporate induced crap get frostwire or bitorrent

Economics (2, Insightful)

asudhir (987272) | about 8 years ago | (#15752285)

Another case of supply and demand in action. There is a huge market for DRM on the producer side where deployment in or on all future mass-media is desired, while at the same time consumers will do anything to fight its implementation. It will be curious to see whether the producers or consumers will have something equivalent to "market power" in this scenario.

Re:Economics (1)

plasmacutter (901737) | about 8 years ago | (#15752605)

"market power" means nothing in this scenario.

The law is hindering the consumer's ability to fight its implementation by say.. starting firms which are dedicated to stripping the DRM.

repeal the DMCA.. then see who has market power, until then there is no free market here.

Re:Economics (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15752661)

It will be curious to see whether the producers or consumers will have something equivalent to "market power" in this scenario.

The consumer will always win, eventually. If simply put, if everyone stops buying they are out of business. Me I stopped buying Sony/BMG CDs. Buyers resistance until the package has a guarantee of "No DRM, no Root Kit". When enough people do this, they will have to listen.

Re:Economics (1)

Tim U. (916375) | about 8 years ago | (#15752671)

... consumers will do anything to fight its implementation.

Most consumers I know see either:

  1. Don't care about DRM, or
  2. Never heard of DRM (even if they're currently using it).

Until there are a significantly large number (like.. uhm.. I don't know.. 524,288) of people complaining about every piece of DRM that comes out, it will never die. I'm rooting for these guys: http://defectivebydesign.org/ [defectivebydesign.org]

Re:Economics (1)

megaditto (982598) | about 8 years ago | (#15752712)

It will be curious to see whether the producers or consumers will have something equivalent to "market power" in this scenario.


No, this is a losing game for the consumers. The (pro-DRM) Industry spends billions on Congressional "contributions" to make sure the laws are pro-DRM. The (anti-DRM) consumers are misinformed, disorganized, and apathetic. Since EFF alone just cannot outspend the DRM lobbyists, and since the voters cannot outvote the corruption (both political parties take bribes; both support DRM), we have some nice pro-DRM laws.

Pro-DRM laws in turn mean that the hackers are now fighting against the Government in forms of police, courts, military, nukes even, if it comes to that! That's what being 'illegal' means: hackers are essentially designated economical terrorists; there is just no way they could possibly defeat DRM.

economical terrorists? (1)

blueZ3 (744446) | about 8 years ago | (#15752826)

It's nice to know we can save some money when crashing jet liners into tall buildings!

Or did you mean economic terrorists?

Re:economical terrorists? (1)

megaditto (982598) | about 8 years ago | (#15753027)

You are right; should have been 'economic', not frugal.

Sorry, Herr OberGruppenGrammatiker ;-)

(Does this count as a Goodwin?)

No, no... grammar nazis are so yesterday's news (1)

blueZ3 (744446) | about 8 years ago | (#15753144)

Grammar ninjas are the new hotness ;-)

Re:Economics (1)

westlake (615356) | about 8 years ago | (#15752976)

Another case of supply and demand in action. There is a huge market for DRM on the producer side where deployment in or on all future mass-media is desired, while at the same time consumers will do anything to fight its implementation.

---or nothing.

Seriously. How many people do you suppose have evver given a second thought to DRM? Compared to say the number that buy or rent home videos? Subscribe to cable or satteliite TV, XM or Sirius radio?

The Geek tends to forget that personal media collections --- libraries --- of any size and significance are historically quite rare and the province of the comfortably well-off.

Sales of sheet music and records shrunk to almost nothing in the Depression years. People discovered quite quickly they didn't need to own the music that was being played on the radio.

The entry level for media for the Internet is broadband service, a mid-line PC or better, with greatly expanded internal and external storage, a quality monitor and sound system. With Wi-Fi and the iPod as the next step up.

The phrase "middle class entitlement" seems to fit rather well here.

I don't understand (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15752289)

Free use is a flawed understanding of the law.
The only use for cracking DRM is for piracy.

Slashdot does not want to pay anything for anything.

Explain now!

Re:I don't understand (1)

rwven (663186) | about 8 years ago | (#15752348)

Bullcrap. I would readily hack DRM'd files i own if it were possible so I can play them in MP3 only players. I still own the dang things. What about people who like a particular service that uses WMA files and they want to play their songs on an iPod? Yeah without DRM you can't guarantee that people won't pirate those songs...but the people who will pirate the hacked DRM songs wouldn't have actually bought them in the first place. All one needs to do to pirate a CD is to buy it from the store and rip it. They might pay an extra 3 or 4 bucks...but hey...no DRM. DRM only punishes the law abiding.

Re:I don't understand (1)

SkipNewarkDE (584096) | about 8 years ago | (#15752492)

You know, having those cash registers, security cases and the security gates at my local Tower Records is a drag, too. It is just punishing the law abiding people who actually pay for their CD's rather than lifting them.

Re:I don't understand (1)

rwven (663186) | about 8 years ago | (#15752534)

No. Until you pay for that CD, you don't own it. They can put you through whatever cash register they want to, wrap the CD any way they want to, etc etc. Once you buy it...the "hassle" (not that buying a CD has ever been a hassle) is over. You can walk out of the store and do whatever you want with it....

The difference is...when you buy a DRM'd music file...you own it...but they still restrict you.

Re:I don't understand (1)

bberens (965711) | about 8 years ago | (#15752619)

A better analogy would be if you had to pay $15 for your cd at the local Tower Records but were not allowed to leave the building with it. You could leave, but the cd had to remain in the store at all times.

DRM is not evil (3, Insightful)

dada21 (163177) | about 8 years ago | (#15752302)

I'm a vocal pro-market advocate, and I don't see any problems with DRM. If you have something you want to keep out of prying eyes, you should be free to protect it in any way possible -- including making it ultra-proprietary.

The big issue I have with the entire DRM debate is that EVERY side forgets where the evil comes into play with DRM: the State. I have many "trade" secrets in the businesses I own and run. In order to keep others from learning the secrets, I perform the actions in private -- away from prying eyes. I'll often mask the output in order to make it not time-effective for my customers to learn the secrest -- and they do continue to hire me so it means they're generally happy with my prices. If they weren't happy, they wouldn't hire me again.

The State, though, removes the market of competition from DRM. If one of my customers took the time to disassemble my services or products, they should be free to use their hands and their tools to mimic the same product or service. The same is true of any DRM -- once you have an item you bought, you should be free to learn to reproduce it at will, regardless of what that item or service is. But the State has created laws preventing us from using our labor in the way we deem best for our needs.

DRM is perfect for many markets -- business can use just the right amount of DRM to deter reverse engineering or disassembly, just long enough until they release their next product to their market. Some industries just need 6 months in order to bring the newer product to market -- if the competition or the customer base wants to waste their time taking something apart rather than buy the original, they should be free to.

Let us look at the real evil in the DRM market -- the one group that wants to prevent us from using our hands and tools in the way we want to. Companies should be free to use any tools (including DRM) to protect their trade secrets; consumers and competition should be free to use their tools to discover how to reproduce a product or service themselves. The State has no right to regulate, require or subsidize either party.

Re:DRM is not evil (5, Insightful)

mrsbrisby (60242) | about 8 years ago | (#15752369)

I'm a vocal pro-market advocate, and I don't see any problems with DRM. If you have something you want to keep out of prying eyes, you should be free to protect it in any way possible -- including making it ultra-proprietary.


You're confused. DRM is about you keeping customers away from their data, not you keeping customers away from your data.

If I buy an accounting and compliance package, and it timebombs six months into full use, I should be able to buy another one, and transfer my data. I should be able to pay someone else to transfer that data because I feel the first vendor was untrustworthy.

DRM means I must pay the first vendor, or go out of business (compliance laws). Never mind what happens if they go out of business- I have no options anymore.

Now, you might think the government has no business protecting people from incompetent companies, what if the vendor did this on purpose? What if that company deliberately set up their accounting package to explode so that they could underbid the competition and recoup the costs later? Isn't that tantamount to extortion?

Re:DRM is not evil (2, Insightful)

dada21 (163177) | about 8 years ago | (#15752443)

You're confused. DRM is about you keeping customers away from their data, not you keeping customers away from your data.

We offer all our customers non-proprietary services as well, but for significantly more money (150% costlier, actually). Our rates on our proprietary services are about 40% cheaper than the competition and we've proven our reliability by being in business for 16 years without a loss in that time frame.

If I buy an accounting and compliance package, and it timebombs six months into full use, I should be able to buy another one, and transfer my data. I should be able to pay someone else to transfer that data because I feel the first vendor was untrustworthy.

If you buy an accounting package that time-bombs, you go into that purchase realizing that risk. What if the reward for using that package was a 40% savings, or more? If you're a new company, you might be willing to take that risk -- depending on what YOU decide you want and need and are willing to pay for. My own contract with my customers stipulates that if my company goes out of business, we will relinquish the proprietary services to them for their purpose. I did NOT put this stipulation in the contract -- I had customers demand it. In order to close the sale, I had to add this line. Do you read every contract that you sign? You should.

DRM means I must pay the first vendor, or go out of business (compliance laws). Never mind what happens if they go out of business- I have no options anymore.

How ridiculous can you get? You must have absolutely ZERO experience with running a business. No one who wants to stick around for a long time signs an agreement that hampers their ability to self protect. Even with my recent T-Mobile re-contracting, I made sure to make changes to their contract, which I had their customer retention and sales department approve. Only someone lacking in business sense signs an agreement without understanding what the repercussions might be.

Now, you might think the government has no business protecting people from incompetent companies, what if the vendor did this on purpose? What if that company deliberately set up their accounting package to explode so that they could underbid the competition and recoup the costs later? Isn't that tantamount to extortion?

Depends on what both parties agreed to. When I buy services from someone, I'll set up my expectations within the contract. My work agreement with my subcontractors contains over 4 paragraphs of assumptions like "You will not attempt to defraud [Company] or its customers." and "You will not attempt to harm, destroy, erase or reduce in functionality..." If you're buying services or items without a contract, I would consider that an "as-is" sale, and you better get a really good deal on it.

The market is providing for every consideration you threw at me here, keep them coming so I can find one that really requires the State to regulate.

Re:DRM is not evil (2, Insightful)

RSquaredW (969317) | about 8 years ago | (#15752710)

You make a reasonable point about being forced to include escape clauses in your contracts with your clients. However, I get the impression that you aren't selling shrink-wrapped products, and you aren't including a EULA that claims to be enforceable upon the opening and use of the product already purchased. The concern about many forms of DRM is that there is no opportunity to renegotiate the contract - how do I tell Sony-BMG or Apple that I don't accept the terms of their 'licensing agreement'?

Apple's EULA for iTunes [apple.com] . What happens if Apple bites it? I'm going to guess that such an event falls under the "We're not responsible for damage to your stuff" clause near the bottom.

Finally, I have to ask. Does your licensing contract state that you can change the terms of the agreement without prior notice, whenever you want, unilaterally?

Re:DRM is not evil (1)

Archangel Michael (180766) | about 8 years ago | (#15753136)

" how do I tell Sony-BMG or Apple that I don't accept the terms of their 'licensing agreement'? "

With your wallet!

If you don't like the terms, don't do the deal. Period, end of story.

Re:DRM is not evil (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15753196)

That totally misses the issue that there might not be an alternative. When you only have one option to get something and you want to get that something, then you'll probably take it, no matter if it is a truly rotten deal. And yes this does happen in the real world, it is quite typical when a monopolistic or oligopolistic economic situation exists, which forinstance the music and movie industries are mostly. Or one of the more clear examples of the modern world the OPEC cartel making sure oil is the price they want it to be.

Re:DRM is not evil (3, Insightful)

wall0159 (881759) | about 8 years ago | (#15753170)

"Only someone lacking in business sense signs an agreement without understanding what the repercussions might be."

So, according to you, it's absolutely fine to take advantage of people who lack business sense, are distracted (eg. single parent), or are just stupid? Is that your general attitude to life?

And really.. would you truely read an entire agreement everytime you purchase a song (remember, the contract could be changed between purchases)? Would you be in a position to negotiate with Apple, if you didn't agree? I mean, c'mon.. this is crazy!

Re:DRM is not evil (1)

0111 1110 (518466) | about 8 years ago | (#15753400)

Even if looked at solely from the POV of the content producer, DRM has serious issues. Let me give an example. I am a big fan of a particular developer of computer role playing games, Black Isle/Obsidian. There are some highly creative folks over there like designer/writer Chris Avellone whose work I have particularly admired over the years. I am highly supportive of the overall aims of this company. It is very important to me that they succeed. Their next game, NeverWinter Nights 2 will be released this October.

I sincerely hope that they sell record numbers, allowing them to more easily get funding for future projects. However, I am currently trying to decide whether or not I should buy the game or download a cracked version. How could I be rooting so strongly for a company and yet at the same time possibly planning to not buy the game, not vote with my dollars for their continued success and efforts? The answer is DRM.

Atari is the publisher of the game and they will almost certainly be using Securom, a form of copy protection, the latest versions of which do not allow any backup copies to be made. But this will not stop the serious hackers from producing cracked versions of the game with all the checks removed so that 1:1 copies are made irrelevant.

I purchased Neverwinter Nights 1 (Bioware) in the first weeks that it was released, but instead of installing it, I downloaded and ran the cracked version. No CD check slowdowns or crashes, no worries about a small scratch or fingerprint making the original disc unreadable. No worries about losing a disc. I was a paying customer. Why should I have to deal with that whole mess, when thousands of people who hadn't paid a dime had access to a far, far better version? It just didn't make any sense.

For the moment I have (tentatively) decided NOT to buy the game but instead to wait for a cracked version to be released. In my particular case, the DRM is the only factor in my non-purchase. Hell, I would donate money to them on a regular basis if they allowed for such a thing. Money is not the issue. The issue is that when I buy content I am (mainly) buying the information, not the media. Even if I were willing to continue to rebuy the same content again and again due to scratches and losing discs, eventually the publisher would stop selling the game. That publishers like Atari are encouraging even the most passionate fans of the developer to download the (superior) cracked version of the game is what I find ironic. Unless the copy protection is SO incredibly unbreakable that it will not even allow one hacker to crack and release the game online all the rest is useless. And even in that (very hypothetical) situation you will still succeed in getting your paying customers angry and annoyed with you. And for what? For a slight increase in sales?

Re:DRM is not evil (1)

lgw (121541) | about 8 years ago | (#15753440)

No one who wants to stick around for a long time signs an agreement that hampers their ability to self protect.

This happens more often than you'd think, even with large and successful companies. Before there was a name for DRM I used to work for a vendor of complete turnkey solutions (accounting, payroll, inventory, etc.) for car dealerships. All of the customer's data was encrypted, and the customer didn't have the key (at least, not without more technical comptetance that the customer had available). The backup tapes were encrypted, the network was encrypted, and so on. If a customer went to a competitor, the customer would have to print all of their data and hire temps to type it in to the new system. Our competitors did the same thing, BTW, and each company would try to break the other's encryption or key management from time to time to gain advantage.

Of course, the customers were car dealerships, so arguably they deserved it.

Re:DRM is not evil (1)

Arker (91948) | about 8 years ago | (#15752466)

Actually, without state enforcement (i.e. DMCA) of DRM, you'd have what you say you want. If the first company tried to screw you, you could hire a second to crack their DRM and salvage your data. (Inconvenient, yes, but a reasonable price to pay for being STUPID enough to lock your data up under DRM to begin with.) What's preventing that right now is exactly what the OP said - the state enforcement. Under the DMCA, and similar legislation in other jurisdictions, it's a criminal offense to break DRM, even when that's the only way to exercise your legal rights over your own works.

No.. DMCA means you must pay first vendor (2, Insightful)

plasmacutter (901737) | about 8 years ago | (#15752564)

DRM means I must pay the first vendor

No.. without the presence of the DMCA there would be a huge sector of our economy right now devoted to producing DRM cracks, one of which would be for your program.

OP is right, it is state regulation.. the technology mandate known as usc section 1201 (DMCA anticircumvention provision), which is keeping you locked in, not the DRM itself.

I'm all for regulations which make sense, but the solution here is not the further regulation of the market by preventing sellers from selling products the way they want to sell them.

It is the repeal of the regulation which prevents buyers from using the products the way they want to use them, and preventing other sellers from selling tools to help buyers in their quest to use the products the way they want.

Re:DRM is not evil (2, Insightful)

hyfe (641811) | about 8 years ago | (#15752939)

You're confused. DRM is about you keeping customers away from their data, not you keeping customers away from your data.
Well, it may be, but you're still missing Grand Parents point.

If you believe in the free market, then DRM doesn't matter. Just as companies should be allowed to do whatever they want to stuff before you sell it, you should be able to do whatever you want with it after you bought it.

What's making DRM so potentially crippling now, is possibly patents, certainly copyrights and trade-secret laws aswell as anti-reverse-engineering laws. The common factor for all of these, is that they are artificial constructs imposed on the free market by the goverment. They're unbalancing the market and creating de-facto monopolies, which in the end, hurts us all.

I have never, ever understood why the majority of right'ish people believe in freedom, individuality and the power of the marketplace will give everything they believe in the boat as soon as the rich people want something. Discuss healthcare, benefits, disability-support and other life-threatening issues and people will throw marketplace-argumentation in your face. Discuss patents, copyrights and trade-secret laws which primarily serves to let big companies strangehold the previously well-functioning market and people will preach pragmatism, because surely the status-quo is worth sacrificing a little for?

If I buy an accounting and compliance package, and it timebombs six months into full use, I should be able to buy another one, and transfer my data.
No, you shouldn't. If the company lied to you, they commited fraud. That's already covered by other laws. If they didn't, its your own bloody fault for buying their software, and it's certainly not the goverments place to enact laws protecting you against your own stupidity.
Isn't that tantamount to extortion?
They did defraud you? Did they lie? What does your contract say? What did they advertise their product with?

If they didn't in any way make any statements about how long your software would live, it's still your fault. If you bought a mission-critical piece of software from a non-reputable vendor, without checking messageboards or previous customers at all, I think you pretty much deserve what you got anyways.

Re:DRM is not evil (3, Insightful)

Magus2501 (899681) | about 8 years ago | (#15752663)

As hard as it is for me to say, I have to agree. If the markets demand DRM, it's a right of the people to make it to meet demand, and it's the distributor's right to use it. That's how a free-market economy is supposed to work.

There are laws against piracy, but they are weak in practice due to Fair Use and similar conventions. The state can't easily punish piracy because it's difficult to catch and difficult to prove.

DRM because is a market-oriented solution to piracy. Instead of relying on laws to threaten people, the market is trying to protect itself. However, the protection methods (those listed in the article, at least) are common and breakable. Breaking the DRM once is all it takes for all of the content under that scheme to be made freely available for piracy.

The DMCA is a move back toward a state-level solution, but it still relies on the presence of some rudimentary DRM. It is now illegal to break a DRM scheme. The difference between this legal solution and the previous is that this one can be proven more readily.

Hypothetically, if I used a software program to undo the encryption on one of my legally-purchased DVDs (I'm not implying anything, I swear!), it would be near-impossible to catch me by the first level of antipiracy I mentioned, and it would be similarly impossible to prove that I was doing anything illegal if I actually got caught (I could be making a backup copy or storing the contents on my laptop to watch on while travelling). The second obviously hasn't stopped me, as the software took care of that. The third, DMCA, takes care of that burden of proof in the first level. By using the software to undo the encryption, I am guilty and all they have to do is catch me.

Piracy networks are getting more and more advanced, so catching someone in the act is very difficult. What usually leads to an arrest is carelessness on the part of the pirate, which can be neither designed nor legislated. Even if the content is geting pirated, the DRM is undone, and the encryption's removal is illegal, nothing can be done if no one gets caught.


And did anyone else think that a spoofed BD+ update disc can be used to undo DRM in Blu-ray players? Seems like the door's open...

Re:DRM is not evil (2, Insightful)

plasmacutter (901737) | about 8 years ago | (#15752723)

The DMCA is a move back toward a state-level solution, but it still relies on the presence of some rudimentary DRM. It is now illegal to break a DRM scheme. The difference between this legal solution and the previous is that this one can be proven more readily.

there are more differences than that grasshoppah.

this one is also completely unaccountable. It has no judicial oversight, oversight which has always been necessary to check the unreasonable assertions of copyright cartels on the producer side, and in so doing establish new and explicit fair uses.

by passing the DMCA they have removed that accountability, which is wrong on many levels, and gives legislative authority to a private institution in violation of the US constitution, although our lovely corporatist judges will never ever make a decision against their briber.. i mean the "free market".

Re:DRM is not evil (1)

BalanceOfJudgement (962905) | about 8 years ago | (#15752893)

"The state can't easily punish piracy because it's difficult to catch and difficult to prove."

I would reply to this by saying - that's by design. The whole point of how the United States government (in particular; you may not be in the US) was designed was to put the burden of proof and force on the government - to protect the rights of the populace. Our government and the rich and powerful forgot those ideas a very long time ago.

Re:DRM is not evil (1)

soft_guy (534437) | about 8 years ago | (#15752693)

If you have something you want to keep out of prying eyes, you should be free to protect it in any way possible

Right, the movie companies want me to NOT look at their movie. My suggestion is that instead of wasting our time with DRM, they should just stop making movies completely. That would be OK with me. I think that would stop people from pirating movies.

Re:DRM is not evil (2, Insightful)

pandrijeczko (588093) | about 8 years ago | (#15753147)

I'm a vocal pro-market advocate, and I don't see any problems with DRM. If you have something you want to keep out of prying eyes, you should be free to protect it in any way possible -- including making it ultra-proprietary.

I agree with you totally - provided that when DRM is applied to "things people can buy", all advertising, marketing and hype that masks that DRM from the potential customer is removed.

When applied to CDs, DVDs, etc., DRM removes my fair use of that product. But as long as the product is clearly labelled as a DRM product, then I can choose to buy or not to buy that product as an informed consumer.

DRM is not in itself evil - it's the advertising and marketing people that mask its presence who are.

DRM is like gun control (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15752308)

Neither will work for exacly the same reasons.

Re:DRM is like gun control (1)

rwven (663186) | about 8 years ago | (#15752383)

There's a guy who knows his stuff :-) They both pushing the law abiding while making the criminals more brash than ever. :)

Re:DRM is like gun control (1)

kemo_by_the_kilo (971543) | about 8 years ago | (#15753009)

the parent said:
DRM is like gun control...Neither will work for exacly the same reasons. DRM doesnt kill people, people do?

Re:DRM is like gun control (1)

maximthemagnificent (847709) | about 8 years ago | (#15753033)

And the war on drugs, of course. Try to treat a public health problem as a criminal one! Great plan.

When you have unrealistic and unenforceable controls, you lose the real control more measured approaches could yield.

Maxim

Re:DRM is like gun control (1)

Bryansix (761547) | about 8 years ago | (#15753044)

Are you trying to say that selling black-tar heroine to little kids should not be illegal and is only a public health problem? I doubt many people will agree with you.

The reasons are quite simple. (1)

purpledinoz (573045) | about 8 years ago | (#15752316)

I don't agree that their reasons are complicated. I'm sure their reasons are quite simple. They want to do something challenging and get some props for their hacks.

iTunes Videos (0, Offtopic)

aychamo (932587) | about 8 years ago | (#15752357)

Dear DRM Hacking Community, iTunes' protected video DRM sucks. You can only view the videos in iTunes or QuickTime player. This is garbage. Please find a way to remove the DRM from the iTunes videos!

if you can't use the door, try the chimney! (1)

plasmacutter (901737) | about 8 years ago | (#15752470)

in the spirit of this article, i'll propose to you a very unique method of skirting itunes video DRM..

Numerous "itunes video crack sites" can be found here [torrentspy.com] , here [piratic.org] , here [meganova.org] , here, [thepiratebay.org] and more here [btsites.tk]

enjoy your higher quality DRM free itunes video files XD

Wow (1)

Umbral Blot (737704) | about 8 years ago | (#15752358)

Although that summary contained many lovely methaphors and similies it was strangely empty of actual content. How odd.

Illegal? (0, Flamebait)

ClayTapes (904294) | about 8 years ago | (#15752363)

Isn't it illegal to spread information on disabling DRM? Then again, i'm not a reader.

Re:Illegal? (1)

Anonymous Cowled (917825) | about 8 years ago | (#15752412)

it depends on the country you're in - in the US, it's illegal, whereas, in the UK, it's not.

Carefully disguised pro hollywood puff piece. (4, Insightful)

plasmacutter (901737) | about 8 years ago | (#15752413)

There seem to be no substantive points.. I see nothing after reading this whole article which can't be found on about.com or from the mouth of anyone between the age of 16 and 26.

I did however find carefully slipped in hollywood propaganda, like this little nugget:

"The force of law (and the risk of lawsuits) combined with the obscurity of most cracking tools means that even DRM solutions which are easily cracked can be effective at preventing casual piracy"

This devious little term, causal piracy, actually refers to what should be our legally protected rights to fair use, and our rights under the AHRA for reproduction on recording devices.

Then there's self serving drek:

DRM's not going away anytime soon, and newer techniques such as BD+ promise to make future technologies even more difficult to hack for long periods of time.

hollywood to hackers..."naa naa-na-naa naa".

  Not to mention it goes against every point made in the "if you can't use the door, find an open window" argument that cracking the cypher is not necessarily necessary.

Re:Carefully disguised pro hollywood puff piece. (4, Insightful)

Angst Badger (8636) | about 8 years ago | (#15752792)

Actually, I thought the point on preventing casual piracy -- which I took to mean not legitimate backups but making copies for your buddies -- was really crucial. Professional pirates, the folks who are selling counterfeit DVDs out of Hong Kong and other points east, are not in any way going to be deterred by DRM. They have the resources to route around it at the hardware level and the incentives to do so. But stopping professional piracy is a job for bilateral trade agreements and customs inspections, not DRM.

In between are the people uploading movies and music to the alt.binaries.* hierarchy and p2p systems like BitTorrent. Frankly, as much as I'm sure the big publishing firms would like for this to stop, the (admittedly modest) technical knowledge needed to take advantage of this kind of mid-range amateur piracy are beyond the average user, and the effort involved is sufficiently great that most people would rather just buy the damn movie at the store. The publishers may or may not understand this, hence the occasional wave of egregious lawsuits, but I suspect they do, if only because crushing Usenet binaries and p2p networks would neither legally nor technically all that challenging.

The goal of big media is to make most people afraid to pirate their products. The huffing and puffing over the technical fringe is just a publicity stunt.

The only really disturbing aspect of DRM is the legislative component, which tramples all over fair use and other elements of free expression. That is something to worry about for sure.

As for BD+, I don't think it will stick around long after the first time some discs are distributed with buggy flash code that cripples the players they are inserted into.

Re:Carefully disguised pro hollywood puff piece. (1)

plasmacutter (901737) | about 8 years ago | (#15752813)

casual piracy -- which I took to mean not legitimate backups but making copies for your buddies -- was really crucial.

the intent of the law on this was covered in the AHRA..

companies allowed the production and marketing of recording devices and forfeitted all right to call the activities described above "piracy".. in return they got a levvy on the blank media used on the devices.

Complicated reasons?? Not really. (3, Insightful)

necro2607 (771790) | about 8 years ago | (#15752487)

"Their reasons are complicated and range from the philosophical to the criminal"...

I don't know about the people specifically referred to in this article but most reasoning behind dislike of DRM is quite simple in nature. For example, being able to listen to a song on more than one brand of audio-playing device, or being able to watch a movie on more than one brand of device. There are also the cases where it's simply a matter of being able to burn a copy of a piece of software, or a movie.

WMA DRM (2, Interesting)

in2mind (988476) | about 8 years ago | (#15752553)

While almost every software[Windows XP,soon Vista too!],copy protection schemes [DeCSS] have been cracked , why hasnt the WMA/WMV DRM been cracked?

What makes it hard to crack WMA? How did Microsoft get this one right?

Re:WMA DRM (3, Informative)

plasmacutter (901737) | about 8 years ago | (#15752577)

I refer you to the winamp method of stripping WMA drm..

or the soundcard loop method, or the virtual soundcard method... etc etc..

they didnt crack the algorithm because they didnt need to.

Re:WMA DRM (1)

in2mind (988476) | about 8 years ago | (#15752691)

I refer you to the winamp method of stripping WMA drm.. or the soundcard loop method, or the virtual soundcard method... etc etc..

While the methods you mentioned work,they are tedious - you have to play the whole song & save it as a non-DRM MP3/WMA.

Theres nothing like cracking the file straight -

  • No loss of quality
  • Saves time
  • Ease of use

By the way what would you do with DRM WMV huh?

Re:WMA DRM (1)

plasmacutter (901737) | about 8 years ago | (#15752739)

By the way what would you do with DRM WMV huh?

winamp plays video.. but frankly I wouldnt buy anything encoded in WMV, as it's an inferior format, and anyone who encodes in it obviously must disdain their work =)

Re:WMA DRM (1)

The MAZZTer (911996) | about 8 years ago | (#15753078)

Because other players have been able to implement WM? playback support (mplayer, Winamp), so you don't need to crack WM?. The major focus is probably on DRM that includes vendor lock-in.

How to Hack WMA DRM (1)

qsqueeq (586979) | about 8 years ago | (#15753603)

Download music.
Use DRM enabled program to burn music to CDs (New Napster supports this).
Use favorite CD ripper to create MP3s from new music CD.
Have a nice day. Sam

Trying to head video DRM off at the pass (1)

widesan (952292) | about 8 years ago | (#15752584)

Disclaimer: I created WideSAN

I'm doing my best to head video DRM off at the pass. I recognized that content owners would be clamouring for it a while ago and have tried to create a viable alternative.

WideSAN [widesan.com] technology would allow video to be distributed free of charge, supported by ads. Since the video is free, and easily downloaded from a web site, this eliminates the need for DRM. After all, who's going to scour the p2p landscape for something they could have already legally downloaded as an AVI from a web site by the time they found it.

People get video (such as movies and TV shows) for free, owners get paid, everybody wins! Now I just have to get some owners to realize this.

Bullshit - What About unDRM (1)

Wrath0fb0b (302444) | about 8 years ago | (#15752738)

From TFA:


>


I'm surprised Ars Technica doesn't consider unDRM and Sidda, which work on all modern encrypted media (incl. video). Microsoft has tried very hard to suppress all mention of unDRM and I guess it worked (it does take some persistent googling to get the files).


Still, it works. I downloaded an encrypted rental from aebn and gave it a try . . .

Re:Bullshit - What About unDRM (1)

IamTheRealMike (537420) | about 8 years ago | (#15752842)

unDRM appears (from a quick Googling) to be a Visual Basic script that automates usage of drmdbg and related tools. These exploited a simple oversight in one of the DRM DLLs, which Microsoft rapidly corrected. Media that was encrypted after this update was pushed out is no longer vulnerable. If it worked for you, possibly it was old media that was never "renewed".

Since we're on the topic (1)

OverlordQ (264228) | about 8 years ago | (#15752814)

Since we're on the topic of DRM, somebody get around to cracking ITMS 6.0 FairPlay, i want to use Hymn [hymn-project.org] to Fair-Use my music again!

It's frustrating (1)

Evil Shabazz (937088) | about 8 years ago | (#15752940)

I find it frustrating and tiring to continually listen to/read about dinosaurs pressing for legislation to protect their business model. Essentially, the RIAA is anti-capitalistic. :P

side note - interesting logic question (2, Insightful)

magnamous (25882) | about 8 years ago | (#15753000)

From the article:
Such technologies end up controlling only the behavior of legitimate users; those who want free copies of Dude, Where's My Car? from BitTorrent won't be deterred.

I wonder how many people who agree with this statement also support gun control.

Re:side note - interesting logic question (1)

andphi (899406) | about 8 years ago | (#15753110)

So do I. In both cases, the laws are definitely enforced on those who buy their goods in a primary market.

However, in the case of digital media, the enforcement, because it is part of "the product", encumbers all downstream users. If I buy a DRMed CD and then give|trade it to my sister, her fair use rights are as infringed as mine were. If I buy a gun, use it, and then give|trade it to her, I experience gun control (waiting period, background checks, yadda yadda) but she does not.

Summation:
More questions: Why is digital content more encumbered than a firearm? Why are primary market participants consider "legitimate" while all others (included secondary market participants) are illegimate?

Meh (1)

Tatsh (893946) | about 8 years ago | (#15753003)

VirtualDubMod was encoding a decrypted DVD to XviD while I was reading this. Have a nice day!

mnb Re:Meh (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15753313)

Real men use CCE 6 pass.

It seems that you've been living two lives. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15753301)

One life, you're Nate Anderson, writer for a respectable hardware website [arstechnica.com] . You have a social security number, pay your taxes, and you... help your landlady carry out her garbage. The other life is lived in breaking DRM, where you go by the hacker alias "Nater" and are guilty of virtually every computer crime we have a law for. One of these lives has a future, and one of them does not.
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