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Solving DRM in the BitTorrent Age

samzenpus posted more than 7 years ago | from the just-let-us-steal dept.

Movies 254

An anonymous reader writes "FiringSquad has a new article on DRM in the BitTorrent Age. They argue that the movie industry looking for "perfect DRM" should aim for the printed book model (people still buy books even though they can read them for free at Barnes & Noble). They argue that the missing element is that screenwriters are not marketed by Hollywood in the same way the book industry markets its authors."

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254 comments

fp (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17838702)

fp =p

Moderatards (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17839044)

The first post may be offtopic or a troll, but by it's very definition is never redundant. If you're going to waste your mod points, please do so with more discernment.

Fags.

Some studying for you (1)

idonthack (883680) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839340)

Humor [wikipedia.org] is the ability or quality of people, objects, or situations to evoke feelings of amusement in other people. The term encompasses a form of entertainment or human communication which evokes such feelings, or which makes people laugh or feel happy.

You should also read Irony [wikipedia.org] , Sarcasm [wikipedia.org] and maybe Droll Humor [wikipedia.org] .

Re:Some studying for you (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17839462)

NO U!

Pwnt!

[By extremely awesome coincidence, the CAPTCHA for this post was "advice".]

Auteurs (4, Insightful)

CRCulver (715279) | more than 7 years ago | (#17838714)

In the 1960s, auteurs like Bergman and Antonioni created films with a highly personal stamp, but while their films had some measure of popular success at the time, people today are no longer interested and films mainly function as simple mindless entertainment. I don't think that the average movie-goer cares about screenwriters--and studios often subject a script to rewrites that take it far away from the screenwriter's original intent--they just want a few laughs, the proverbial roller-coaster ride of suspense, or a heartwarming love story, and why pay for that if it's on Bittorrent?

Moore's law, etc. (1)

Alien54 (180860) | more than 7 years ago | (#17838892)

He cites the common book at the best example of a perfect form of copy protection, and looks forward when a similar state will will exist with HD media. I suspect that Moore's Law will undo him more than he realises. Thus, it may be a constant race of technology.

In some ways, the HD ecosystem is going to buy time to help DRM reach that magic steady state that we enjoy with books. With HD movies requiring huge amounts of space, there's already a barrier to casual copying if only for HDD space issues. The HD-DVD rips that have been unleashed onto the Internet still represents gigabytes and gigabytes of storage. As bandwidth and HDD space increases, technologies such as BD+ potentially will maintain sufficient copy protection to prevent casual copying while still ensuring that the optical disc is a) not counterfeit and b) can be used for managed copy (allowing you to transcode the content to portable players). Potentially being the key phrase - the industry has had rough enough start with HDCP. [...]

I'm even hopeful about Hollywood increasing the visibility of screenwriters in the industry. As movies like Fight Club and TV shows like 24 and Heroes continue to push the envelope of storytelling and captivate an increasingly sophisticated audience, writers are increasingly forced to write more sophisticated movies. A screenplay from a 1990's Van Damme movie wouldn't fly today. Would any movie which uses "it was just a dream" as a plot device work today? Only if it's told like A Beautiful Mind.

The elite group of screenwriters who are capable of writing such movies is relatively small, and that is good news because it means Hollywood only needs to spend a lot of money on a few number of people. So if anyone you know is a creative executive at a studio, debate with them why stories like Thank You For Smoking, Good Will Hunting, Napoleon Dynamite, Pirates of the Caribbean, Finding Nemo or God forbid, Titanic were more successful than Stealth, Lady in the Water, Basic Instinct 2, Poseidon, and Flushed Away...

Re:Auteurs (1)

westlake (615356) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839128)

In the 1960s, auteurs like Bergman and Antonioni created films with a highly personal stamp

Foreign films have always struggled to reach an American audience, and a director so precious and conceited as to call himself an "auteur" has a particularly hard row to hoe.

Re:Auteurs (2, Interesting)

Anonymous McCartneyf (1037584) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839186)

It's the film fans who call Bergman and Antonioni "auteurs." I'm not sure if they called themselves that.
They got called "auteurs" because it is believed that their directorial vision colored their work enough that they effectively authored it--regardless of who wrote the screenplay.
Those intending to sell films the way books get sold should use directors, not screenwriters.

Re:Auteurs (1)

westlake (615356) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839370)

They got called "auteurs" because it is believed that their directorial vision colored their work enough that they effectively authored it--regardless of who wrote the screenplay.

I know the theory.

But I can't think of anything more likely to be the ruin of an American original like Orson Welles.

Re:Auteurs (2, Insightful)

Skreems (598317) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839258)

This is true of many main-stream films, but not of the majority of movies that come out. Charlie Kaufman writes amazingly unique movies, as do Aaron Sorkin and Daron Aronofsky; Terry Gilliam and Paul Thomas Anderson direct artistic masterpieces, and Chris Carter is fast gaining a reputation for interesting touches, as did Guy Ritchie in the late 90s. Also, certain actors tend to work in very interesting films; Christian Bale, Gary Oldman, Al Pacino, Tom Cruise before he went nutso, all had a tendency to pick very interesting films. Even moreso in independent film, creativity and personal touches are a staple, not an afterthought.

It's certainly possible to see nothing but mindless entertainment when you go to the movies, but it takes very little effort to find something a lot more satisfying if you live near any decent-sized city.

Re:Auteurs (1)

aztektum (170569) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839352)

Maybe that's the problem then. They keep rehashing the same themes and aren't creating much content with originality. Much like the games industry or any large, over saturated big money industry these days. People are tired of paying over and over for the same trite crap with a different title or "reimagined" logo.

Re:Auteurs (1)

Vintermann (400722) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839800)

Screenwriters might have been popular if they had been given the credit they deserve. One example I always bring up in this is German board games. Board games in Germany (or even in the US) have no real protection unless they're patented, which is very, very rarely profitable. This means that for most published games, you can make a clone, change the name slightly and reword the rules (withot changing their essence at all), and publish it and make money. In boardgames, commercial "piracy" is essentially legal.

The way Hasbro and similar stores work around this is that they choose a few games, patent them and then market the hell out of them.

The way the german game publishers work around this is that they print the designer's name on the box in big letters. They let it be art. The designer's name is a big selling point, as the most famous designers (Knizia, Teuber, Kramer, Seyfarth to name a couple) have distinct styles, as well as reliable quality standards. Both publishers and designers have to be careful, because a broken game could taint their good names.

The strategy seems to work: I have never seen a cloned german game, and the game market in Germany is much larger than anywhere else.

Re:Directors, not screenwriters (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17840054)

Comparing authors to screenwriters isn't the best comparison. Actors ands directors are the ones who make the largest difference in the end result of a movie and often won't sign on to a poorly written screenplay.

The quality of movies is similar to the quality of books: the discount book section is as large as the discount movie section and there are mas many derivative sci-fi/fantasy books as there are poorly done movies. People buy books for the quality of the printing, the prestige of a book shelf and the ease of carrying and reading. The same could be said of DVDs/CDs. If these media weren't being crippled and (in the case of CDs) watered down with sub-par content, companies would see a boost in profits.

Books vs Music/Movies - No comparison (5, Insightful)

bacon55 (853395) | more than 7 years ago | (#17838718)

You can print out the free book from the net...but its on Printer paper, it's 250 - 400 sheets, and you have to fold and bind it.

Copying a movie or music onto a disk and playing it on your home theatre, stereo, computer, is exactly what you would be doing if you paid for it.

Interesting thought - but not a valid comparison.

Re:Books vs Music/Movies - No comparison (3, Interesting)

CRCulver (715279) | more than 7 years ago | (#17838784)

Or one can simply read the book on screen. A glance at any file-sharing network will reveal thousands of scanned IT books and language tutorials in PDF format.

Re:Books vs Music/Movies - No comparison (5, Interesting)

idonthack (883680) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839140)

Reading books on a screen sucks. When I'm reading a book, I like to sit sideways in the armchair, hang over the edge of my bed, or sprawl out on the floor. You can't read a screen like that. Books are also convenient for actually taking places where it would be impractical, expensive, impossible, or maybe just socially unacceptable to take a computer. Usually outside. You know, that big room with the blue ceiling.

Re:Books vs Music/Movies - No comparison (5, Interesting)

smidget2k4 (847334) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839310)

I read e-books from time to time on my PDA, outside, under the big blue ceiling, with no problems. That being said, I do prefer the tangibility of paper books. There is something about turning the page, measuring how close to the end you are via a bookmark, etc, that adds extra appeal to a book.

Re:Books vs Music/Movies - No comparison (1, Redundant)

jlarocco (851450) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839426)

Maybe I'm just not "with it", but the idea of reading more than a few paragraphs on a PDA makes me want to shoot myself in the head. Not to mention all the other disadvantages of a PDA when compared to a book.

Re:Books vs Music/Movies - No comparison (1)

cgenman (325138) | more than 7 years ago | (#17840090)

On my PDA I can carry literally thousands of different books, from Tolstoy to Japanese folk tales. It can automatically scroll pages, and search for text (for those fun foreign names). You can read it when it's a lot darker than with a standard book, and the text is as nice as reading from a laptop screen... which is not to say great, but definitely passable. Size fonts to your liking, not the publisher's. Never lose your place. Doesn't actually take up room in your pocket (if you were already carrying the PDA anyway). Did I mention search? I really miss search when reading traditional books.

Which is not to say that books are nice. But once we get a screen that is as nice as it should be... there really won't be a lot of reason to stick with the dead tree edition.

PDAs have other advantages over books (2, Insightful)

Namarrgon (105036) | more than 7 years ago | (#17840162)

I read a lot of books on my smartphone. The screen is bright & crisp, even in daylight, the text is well-defined, and I can read for hours with no hint of headaches or eye fatigue. The "page" is small, but flipping pages is effortless with the scrollwheel under my thumb.

However, what convinced me to prefer it over paper are the things books can't match:

  • Size - it's smaller than a single paperback, yet can store vast numbers of books on a 2GB memory card. Great for long business trips, or for portable reference libraries.
  • Convenience - I always have my phone with me, therefore I always have my books with me. If I find myself waiting for 10 minutes for any reason, I can read a few more pages, and my reference books are always on hand.
  • Access - it never loses my place, it's fully searchable, I can jump around & easily retrace my steps, it's trivial to look up words with a built-in dictionary, etc etc
  • Reading in bed - a biggie for me. Lighter that most paperbacks (let alone hardbacks) so my hands don't get tired holding it up, fully backlit so I don't need to angle it towards the bedside light, or even have the light on at all (doesn't disturb spouse), not even page-turning noises.

Sure it's not for everyone. There are disadvantages as well of course (expensive, relatively fragile, gotta keep it charged), but since I'm copping all that for the smartphone anyway, it's no extra inconvenience.

Re:Books vs Music/Movies - No comparison (1)

bacon55 (853395) | more than 7 years ago | (#17838840)

Sitting in front as a screen isn't always applicable.

Many people read before bed, or when outdoors. Reading on a small screen is impractical and annoying.

Ultimately the only way to make this practical was said in TFA.

"That's the predicament of digital music and digital video right now. Unprotected content over large BitTorrent networks is akin to having a Star Trek replicator. In order to have a DRM model that parallels the book model, you have to make copying music and movies as tough as photocopying a book."

In other words...keep doing exactly what their doing now. The only reason we don't have books pirated is because it takes expensive machines to properly bind and print a book. They aren't going to be able to improve the media so much that we can't replicate it - unless they want to pull some BS collusion with manufacturing companies. Digital media is inherently cheap to reproduce, if you can read it, you can copy it.

Re:Books vs Music/Movies - No comparison (5, Interesting)

QuantumG (50515) | more than 7 years ago | (#17838862)

Which is why all the decent e-book readers mysteriously fail to reach the market. In all the last 15 years, since the invention of e-ink, dozens of companies have attempted to make viable e-book readers and been quashed by patents or by the copyright owners who have demanded that the product include draconian DRM. The OLPC, intended to (eventually) sell at US$100 per unit, has a 1200 (H) x 900 (V) resolution (200 dpi) [laptop.org] display which is readable in direct sunlight. That is what you need to comfortably read a book. That, or e-ink, with even higher dpi. These things are clearly not expensive, where are they? The OLPC shows what engineers can do when they are able to stop thinking about what will make the most money, and just try to make something great.

Re:Books vs Music/Movies - No comparison (1)

westlake (615356) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839272)

These things are clearly not expensive, where are they?

Unwanted, mostly. Audiobooks have had remarkable success. Hands free, perfect for the road. The hardcover or the paperback is for the bed, the bath or the recliner. No batteries to replace. No dynamos to crank. There is a market still for the book as art or craft. People for whom names like Bruce Rogers and N.C. Wyeth still have resonance.

Re:Books vs Music/Movies - No comparison (1)

QuantumG (50515) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839794)

Unwanted, mostly.
If there's anything consumer products manufacturers should have learnt by now, it's that they have no idea wtf people want.. Of course I admit that it's a bit much to ask that they just make something, throw it onto the market and see what happens. That would take courage.

Re:Books vs Music/Movies - No comparison (1)

Propaganda13 (312548) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839332)

Sony Portable Reader System PRS-500 is $350. That's without actually paying for the books. The couple of sites I've looked at recently have ebooks ranging in the $7-8 around the price of a paperback. That's another 50 or so books that you could have bought instead of the e-reader. You can pick up new hardcover books from Amazon's other sellers dirt cheap after a book has been out for awhile. There's about 50 sellers that have Davinci Code Hardcover for $7.50 shipped. I've never found a e-reader that justified its price. Since they haven't met the first criteria, I've never had to worry about whether or not DRM was used. I've read plenty of ebooks though on the computer. There are plenty of legal and illegal sources of free ebooks on the internet. http://www.baen.com/library/ [baen.com] has over 90 free books in various formats including RTF.

Re:Books vs Music/Movies - No comparison (1)

smaddox (928261) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839372)

Doesn't the OLPC cost a lot more than $100 per unit ATM?

I forget the actual number, but wasn't it more like $400?

Of course, in a year or two, it should be around $100.

And who says e-ink has been around for 15 years? Seems to me like its just now getting to a usable state. They don't even have the flexible version (let alone color) out of the lab yet, as far as I know.

If I could get an open format e-ink e-book reader that rolls up into a convenient pocket size and lasts a few days on a single charge (it would have to stop the processor between pages, unlike the current sony reader), i would gladly pay upwards near $200. However, the current functionality at the current price? Not happening. (Oh and wtf is with the mp3 BS on the sony one. Talk about wasted electronics.)

Re:Books vs Music/Movies - No comparison (1)

krotkruton (967718) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839244)

There's even more to it than that. For those that buy books in person in stores, there is no difference between that and picking the book up at the library (which you can also do with a lot of movies). Yet, people still buy books, and they even go the extra mile and frequently buy hardcover instead of soft. Books have collection value, which isn't really the case for movies. It's easy to compare antiques to books, but there is little more value in an official DVD than in a burnt copy.

Re:Books vs Music/Movies - No comparison (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17839928)

Here in the third world, where a book like "The C++ Progamming Language" goes for arround 80% of my salary as a teaching assistant, as far as technical books go we print them on copy machines (arround 2 or 3 dollar-cents a page, cause tonner goes really cheap for those devices). We print on both sides of the A4 page, and printing two book pages per side of the A4 page. You then punch holes with a machine on the left side of the book, and use plastic rings to hold it tight. You can also leave the PDF at any copy-machine-shop and go get your book the next day.

I must have arround 7 or 8 books printed this way. People going for their PhDs in computer science have arround the same number or more, maybe they bought the most important ones out of pitty for the author. Copy books are not as durable as the original ones, but are sometimes easier to read, and lighter to carry (because of printing four book pages per A4 page). Not to mention sometimes the original is really expensive, and a pain in the ass to buy because of the prices of international shipping for heavy stuff. Not to mention that, as i already said, you must wait a day for you copy machine book, and arround a week for the internationally shipped one.

I'm from Argentina, Buenos Aires to be exact. In poorer places of my country, there are even "professional" print-shops (those where you do brochures, leaflets, small magazines, etc...) who print like 50 or 60 copies of a book ilegally downloaded as a PDF (or sometimes borrowed from a library), to give it out to a whole course. To those guys, this is the only chance to study from the same top-material someone does on the US or Europe. It's impossible for a university here to have 50 or 60 copies of a book available at it's library.

Maybe if you *really* needed to print books, you would have come up with this printing method wich is efficient and does the job... So it's a valid comparison here for me.

I don't do the same for, as an example, my role playing books. In that case the book really features pretty damn good art and nice paper. WOTC books also come in colour, and sort of glossy cool paper. The copy machine book there is enough to play arround, but the original really has something more to offer.

DRM vs Private BitTorrent Trackers (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17838726)

DRM could be a little harder in the Bit Torrent field, although it could virtually take over P2P networks unless they have a way to block them (I can't tell the difference on P2P unless I download the file first). Personally, I use a private bittorrent tracker which affords me the ability to know that the content posted isn't DRM crippled.

convenience, not DRM (3, Insightful)

macadamia_harold (947445) | more than 7 years ago | (#17838760)

Solving DRM in the BitTorrent Age

The only DRM that works is having movies that are large enough, that most people won't want to spend the time downloading them. (i.e. 24gb HD-DVDs.)

Re:convenience, not DRM (0)

kypper (446750) | more than 7 years ago | (#17838818)

Cue faster bandwidth speeds...

I work for an (unnamed) Cable provider in Canada set to release a 20Mbit service... I know others are already there.

Re:convenience, not DRM (3, Insightful)

macadamia_harold (947445) | more than 7 years ago | (#17838926)

Cue faster bandwidth speeds...

Just as bandwidth is always increasing, so too should the quality (and file size) of Hollywood's product. Rather than focusing on making it difficult to pirate their content with DRM, they need to focus on consistently improving their product, and ease of use to legally enjoy it. The carrot rather than the stick, as it were.

Re:convenience, not DRM (1)

infaustus (936456) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839170)

I don't think that will work forever. Beyond a certain point, people will stop caring about the higher quality and just accept rips that are less than lossless.

Re:convenience, not DRM (1)

macadamia_harold (947445) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839196)

Beyond a certain point, people will stop caring about the higher quality and just accept rips that are less than lossless.

Beyond that certain point, an unlimited amount of media will be digitally delivered for a flat monthly "service" fee (which will be divvied up by content providers according to what you watched that month).

Re:convenience, not DRM (4, Insightful)

thegrassyknowl (762218) | more than 7 years ago | (#17838886)

The only DRM that works is having movies that are large enough, that most people won't want to spend the time downloading them. (i.e. 24gb HD-DVDs.)

This works for books, even though people can read them for free in electronic form or at the book store. The reason people buy books is that they're nicely bound and easy to hold, take with you, etc.

I don't get into downloading movies - got better things to do than chase my tail with all the garbage files, encrypted RAR files that ask you to go to installspyware.com with Internet explorer to get a password only to find out that the file has some 60 year old movie you never heard of and now your machine is part of a botnet (no, I dont' do it but i know people who do).

There is huge diversity in books. You can go to a book store and find lots of different books on lots of different themes. There are a selection of mainstream authors that publish the same junk over and over, then there are the lesser known authors who publish unique works. People actually pay for that stuff. Also, technical references are so much better in book-bound form. Electronic and printed/ringbound just don't cut it for quickly looking stuff up.

The only people you hear complaining about piracy of movies (and music) is the *AAs who really only care about the huge-ass big budget mainstream (that is mostly the same formula-based crap over and over). The best DRM is make movies that people really want to pay for.

Re:convenience, not DRM (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17839392)

I don't get into downloading movies - got better things to do than chase my tail with all the garbage files, encrypted RAR files that ask you to go to installspyware.com with Internet explorer to get a password only to find out that the file has some 60 year old movie you never heard of and now your machine is part of a botnet (no, I dont' do it but i know people who do).
It's really not that hard(though it can be very hard to find specific non-mainstream movies). I'm perfectly able to understand that you'd rather not download movies illegally for whatever reason(the illegality of the act, perhaps, being chief among them), but you should understand that the movie industry is deliberately trying to portray movie piracy as harder and less rewarding than it is - you don't have to spend hours searching about or downloading garbage(feedback systems eliminate the last option in practice) to find a mainstream film, and the end result is certainly not something filmed in a movie theatre with a shaky hand-held camera.

Re:convenience, not DRM (3, Insightful)

flokati (926091) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839492)

Also, technical references are so much better in book-bound form. Electronic and printed/ringbound just don't cut it for quickly looking stuff up.
I would say that the primary benefit of an electronic format is quickly looking stuff up.

Re:convenience, not DRM (2, Interesting)

teknognome (910243) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839824)

I would say that the primary benefit of an electronic format is quickly looking stuff up.
It depends on how one remembers what you want to look up. If it's a specific word or phrase, sure, electronic is ideal. If you remember that it's 3/4 of the way down a right-hand page, with about an inch-worth of pages left in the book, paper is probably going to beat electronic for look-up speed. Some people remember tactile/spacial information better, and electronic doesn't (yet) provide such feedback too well.

Re:convenience, not DRM (4, Insightful)

rtb61 (674572) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839758)

That fails becuase you take the 24gb version and shrink it down, DIVx, then bit torrent it (let alone that a lot of DVDs aren't much better resolution than a VHS tape). The problem with DRM is one one side you have completely unreasoning greed, their ideals are;

If you rewind to play again you should pay again.

As you increase resolution you should pay more

Hit pause and pay extra for the still frame.

Someone looks over you shoulder they should pay for the number of seconds they see the screen and if they can actually hear it they should pay more again.

The whole family watches then the whole family should pay.

If you read the cover to decide whether or not to buy it, you should pay, they never gauranted a free quote.

Fot the same content on three different devices then you should pay three times.

Backup, BACKUPS, your not entitled to any stinkin' backups.

Lend the media to a friend then the friend should pay a rental fee.

You also stricly forbidden buy law to comment upon the quality of the content, in any way shape or form.

On the others side you have reasonabe customers who are only willing to play a reasonable price and fuck the publisher if they think they can control how the end users choose to make use of the licenced copy for the equivalent life of the content copyright. Copyright last for 70 years beyond the authors death, the your licence should be warranted to survive exactly the same amount of time regardless of the media and it should be the media publishers responsibility to ensure that it does.

Umm, how about quality? (3, Interesting)

metlin (258108) | more than 7 years ago | (#17838794)

How about original, quality stuff for a change?

There are so many movies out there that I do not care about, but if it's a movie I really like, I will go out and buy the DVD.

Ditto for a book - if it's good, I will go ahead and buy it.

And people with tastes different than mine will do the same for books and movies.

The advantage of a book is that most books are quite cheap (well, unless you are looking for a specific one in a narrow area, say something by Springer Verlag or something).

Movie DVDs are getting there, but music is far, far away. That is the problem. And the signal to noise is terrible for music - so much crap out there.

And finally, I can do anything I want with my book - photocopy it, scan the pages, rip it - whatever the hell I want.

The music and movie industry is trying to stop me from doing just that - and that is the heart of the problem.

IMHO and all that.

Re:Umm, how about quality? (1)

Analein (1012793) | more than 7 years ago | (#17840236)

>The advantage of a book is that most books are quite cheap (well, unless you are looking for a specific one in a narrow area, say something by Springer Verlag or something).


Please note that most Germans apart from those in science would immediately associate "Springer Verlag" with the utterly evil "Axel Springer Verlag". The first one being a somewhat popular group for scietific journals is alright to me, however the latter mentioned redefines evil. Their main income is made through the "BILD-Zeitung", a highly populistic and mostly incorrect daily newspaper, pretty cheap and right winged conservative. There is even a blog about the erroneous articles in the newspaper(http://bildblog.de/) and Heinrich Böll - one of the better German authors, while we're on the topic - wrote a pretty decent book about one of the affairs they were in. It was called "Die verlorene Ehre der Katharina Blum". Read it, nice work on media corruption and the power of mislead masses.


Concerning TFA: Books rule. No batteries, no wires, no incompatibilities, no repair fees, no DRM, low costs, a lot to chose. I like spending hours and hours in the bookstore, I like giving away books with personal notes of dedication as gifts to close friends, I like writing, hell I even think women look a lot more attractive while reading books. Now for the movies... I love movies, but the only DVDs I remotely consider to buy are Art House flicks, old Italian surrealism, Ingmar Bergmann flix and some indie films. Lars von Trier gets his chance too. Other movies might get the chance to get watched by me in the cinema, but I'd never consider buying crap like "The Punisher", not even for two bucks.

Directors over screenwriters (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17838814)

The best screenwriter in the world can have their movie ruined by a bad director. A good director will pick good screenplays or have bad ones re-written. Plus, movie making is a much more collaborative process than novel writing. Novels need two people, generally: a writer and an editor. A movie needs actor(s), writer(s), director(s), producer(s), cameramen, lighting, and so on down to key grips and best boys.

Re:Directors over screenwriters (2, Interesting)

The Ultimate Fartkno (756456) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839206)

I paraphrase Orson Welles, who said something along the lines of "An artist needs a brush, an author needs a pen, a director needs an army."

The perfect DRM is no DRM (4, Interesting)

acid06 (917409) | more than 7 years ago | (#17838864)

But the media cartels will still probably need another 5 years to get it.

And the funny thing is: if they ever end up developing a really hard to break DRM or copy protection scheme it won't really succeed in most of the world. Technology in emerging economies (such as Brazil, Russia, India and China) only gets widespread usage when their copy protection is broken.

As a brazilian gamer I used to track down PlayStation 2 adoption around here. PS2 only got mainstream after pirated games were available. But that doesn't mean Sony lost revenue. It didn't. If the copy protection had never been broken, PS2 would've never succeeded around here.

In the end, DRM only hurts those that try to play by the rules (well, at least until they get tired if being abused and get their [pirated] goodies for free).

Re:The perfect DRM is no DRM (1, Insightful)

heinousjay (683506) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839002)

Sorry, if people were pirating PS2 games, Sony lost revenue, the publishers lost revenue, the developers lost revenue, and everyone in the distribution chain lost revenue. Saying otherwise is attempting a semantic argument to justify the desire to have free entertainment. Free entertainment, for god's sake. Very justifiable - I can see how it's moral to be able to play a game without compensating the enormous number of people who worked to make it. Obviously they deserve nothing because they work in a digital medium.

Re:The perfect DRM is no DRM (1)

mgabrys_sf (951552) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839030)

Particularly since Sony like most (but not all) console makers were taking losses on their hardware at the outset. That means Sony lost double. They lost the negative margin on the hardware sale, and no software revenue to pick up the slack. Brazil was hitting them two-fold.

Re:The perfect DRM is no DRM (2, Insightful)

Mr2001 (90979) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839194)

No, that's not how it works. Even if you're selling consoles at a loss, you're still better off selling them than letting them gather dust on the shelves.

The cost is incurred when you manufacture the consoles, not when you sell them. If you spend $500 to make the console and sell it for $200, you lose $300. But if you spend $500 to make the console and then don't sell it, you lose the whole $500.

Re:The perfect DRM is no DRM (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17840248)

You wouldn't lose that money if you never manufactured it in the first place. There's something wrong when your business plan calls for always selling your product below cost, assuming you don't make it up some other way.

Re:The perfect DRM is no DRM (1)

Creepy Crawler (680178) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839158)

---Sorry, if people were pirating PS2 games, Sony lost revenue, the publishers lost revenue, the developers lost revenue, and everyone in the distribution chain lost revenue. Saying otherwise is attempting a semantic argument to justify the desire to have free entertainment. Free entertainment, for god's sake. Very justifiable - I can see how it's moral to be able to play a game without compensating the enormous number of people who worked to make it. Obviously they deserve nothing because they work in a digital medium.

You know, the same would apply if I just didnt buy any of their stuff? Sony would lose revenue, developers would lose revenue, and everyone in the distribution chain would lose revenue. Does not buying Sony stuff make you bad, because those people wouldnt have your money? Hmmm?

Re:The perfect DRM is no DRM (1)

Anonymous McCartneyf (1037584) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839364)

There is a difference between simply not buying Sony's stuff, and taking pirated Sony stuff.
The conventional trade agreement with Sony is this: they give you stuff, you give them money.
If you neither buy nor use Sony's stuff, they don't get your money, but they have no claim to your money because you don't have their stuff. If they aren't making something worth buying, let it be on their head.
If you get pirated Sony stuff for free, then they don't get your money, but you get their stuff. The agreement is then broken. Because of those who do this, Sony makes less stuff worth buying, partly because they don't have as much money to pay developers, partly because they spend much of what money they do have for anti-pirating mechanisms (aka DRM). Everyone loses.

Re:The perfect DRM is no DRM (1)

snarfbot (1036906) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839256)

the point hes trying to make is that they never wouldve bought it. when people only make 2000 us dollars a year they cant afford to spend 50 dollars on a game. so its not like they wouldve payed for the software had it not been cracked, so sony didnt lose anything, infact they sold some extra hardware that otherwise wouldnt have been sold. and probably a few extra games too, when they got old and cheap, possibly who knows.

i know lots of art students that had pirated copies of photoshop, does that mean that adobe lost money? no, these people could never afford to pay 600 dollars for the program. adobe lost nothing, now that they are succesfull graphic artists, what program do they use and pay for, adobe photoshop.

not exactly the same thing, but similar.

Lost revenue=Crap (5, Insightful)

aepervius (535155) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839400)

Firstly, as far as I can tell the PS2 were not stolen, were not copied with cheap tawainess ship, they were bought from Sony. So.... This revenue WOULD NOT HAVE existed at all without the piracy boom in Brazil.

What they lost is a POTENTIAL sale of game. If people pirate 20 games, buy 3, it is still 3 bought AND NOT 20 LOSS. If people were going in supermarket and hammering/stealing/crushing those 20 PS2 game this would be a loss. But what you describe isn't that. There has been NO REAL LOSS FOR SONY. Hammer that in your head. A copyright infringement is at best a POTENTIAL LOSS, but not a real. CAse in point, if everybody on earth was copying FFIX and sony would still have done the same sale in the past, then they would STILL BE WRITING THE SAME NUMBER AT THE END OF THEIR FISCAL Q.

I do not condone copyright infrigement, but NEITHER DO I CONDONE BAD RETHORIC ON "FANTASY LOSSES".

Re:The perfect DRM is no DRM (1)

Xenographic (557057) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839010)

I doubt they'll ever get it, frankly, but I just hope that enough of the rest of the world moves on without them that it becomes a non-issue.

Hollywood? Promoting Writers? (3, Interesting)

Nova Express (100383) | more than 7 years ago | (#17838894)

We'll see that shortly after The Ann Coulter/Rush Limbaugh Home for Gay Communist Welfare Cheats opens in East St. Louis.

Haven't you heard the joke? "Did you hear about the Polish starlet? She was so dumb, she slept with the writer."

Hollywood pays writers very well compared to non-film jobs, but also treats them like dirt and screws them over at the drop of a hat. They're well below actors, directors, and producers on the Talent Totem Pole. Here's an easy way to confirm for yourself how little heed Hollywood pays writers: Without looking at the IMDB, name any writer who has won an Academy Award (other than Peter Jackson) for best original or Adapted Screenplay. Get one and you're probably doing better than 99% of the movie-viewing public.

Or to put it another way: We'll see Hollywood start promoting writers right after they stop making films based on TV shows or video games.

Re:Hollywood? Promoting Writers? (1)

vlad30 (44644) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839508)

A statement I heard recently "for the first time in history we actually know the actors and not the writers" Try thinking of a famous actor more than 100 years ago, then think about playwrights, authors,composers etc.

  When I think of good movies they tend to have good writers and the director/producer sticks close to the writers vision e.g. Lord of the Rings and Harry potter movies personally I have trouble naming actors in those movies but I know JRR Tolkien (PJ deserves credit for not americanising the story) and J.K. Rowling who wanted the cast to be british in keeping with the book

Stupid (2, Interesting)

mattwarden (699984) | more than 7 years ago | (#17838950)

This makes no sense. I don't read books online because it's uncomfortable and inconvenient. Movies and TV shows are shown on a projected screen with no pause button (unless you have special equipment) and, in the case of TV, interruptions of advertising.

Online books don't take over physical books because physical books have more value.

BT takes over TV and movie theaters because movies/episodes downloaded over BT have more value than their original equivalents.

Re:Stupid (1)

pilbender (925017) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839682)

Well said. Another great thing about bound books is they create more desktop space. I reserve my screens for digital information while I study from a book that doesn't need valuable screen space.

When it comes to movies and music, I don't gain anything like this. I still need a screen, equipment, or a player. Having it on my computer in digital form on the hard drive or dvd drive makes no difference, I still see and use it the same way.

On the advertisements... I quit watching TV for years except for the news now and then. I couldn't stand to waste my time with advertising. TV didn't bring enough value for me to offer my time. Once I got a Tivo, I started to watch again because of the value... I was entertained and not wasting my life watching a sales pitch.

So basically these industries supplying this content need to focus their energy on value and convenience. Not butting heads with the customer. Give them value! Don't get me wrong. I'm not a file sharer and I'm not a copyright infringer, but I do turn my back on nonsense. When I see things being shoved down my throat, I quite naturally resist.

This is funny because it reminds me of the resistance we all felt when the recordable cassette tape came out. Record companies didn't go bankrupt, and they still won't. Same with VCRs... movie companies didn't go bankrupt... same with the CD... labels didn't go bankrupt. Are we seeing a pattern here?

Where to read books (5, Funny)

SEWilco (27983) | more than 7 years ago | (#17838958)

The librarians of the world would like to teach the submitter something.

Re:Where to read books (1)

QuantumG (50515) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839076)

Yeah, not the least of which is that books are not just about entertainment. I don't exactly trawl around bittorrent sites, but I'm betting their aint too much in the way of educational materials on there.

Re:Where to read books (1)

melikamp (631205) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839238)

There's quite a bit, actually. Pirate Bay top 10, by seeds:

  1. Learn JavaScript ? In a Weekend
  2. ! Home Electrical Wiring [1-3] - Build Your Own Smart Home 2003
  3. Windows Vista The Missing Manual
  4. Windows Vista(TM) Inside Out
  5. PINK_FLOYD_SHEET_MUSIC
  6. 135.For.Dummies.ebooks.Wiley.Publishing
  7. WoW Burning Crusade Guide
  8. !! Maximum Energy For Life - A 21 Day Strategic Plan To Feel Gre...
  9. O'Reilly - Building the Perfect PC, Second Edition
  10. (eBook) Real Estate - Robert Allen - The Road To Wealth

But, to help you point, (11) is "Penthouse And Playboy PDF files"

Re:Where to read books (1)

Nasarius (593729) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839936)

Here, enjoy [demonoid.com] . And there are very popular private trackers like BitMe and Elbitz that are specifically dedicated to educational material. If it's possible to put into electronic form, there's a community that fills the niche.

Article misses the point (4, Insightful)

Speed Pour (1051122) | more than 7 years ago | (#17838982)

The industry needs to recognize that it'll be impossible to stop piracy. The more complex, innovative, or intricate the content protection system, the more interest and zeal crackers will have in subverting such protection
This is the problem? Sorry, I believe this is the side effect of the problem, that the studios have prioritized copy protection and anti-piracy above user experience.

This article ignores the detail that the people who get their hands on cracking tools, or get their hands on drm-free versions of movies are enjoying a higher quality user experience than those people using legally purchased movies/music. I've heard several accounts of having to fiddle with the connections, or turning the power off and back on again just to get the player to handshake correctly with the TV or to reset the correct in-memory keys. There are also frequent issues with players/tv downsampling video even if everything should be working at the highest possible quality. The article really misses the point that DRM is becoming a cause for piracy rather than a side effect of it.

Re:Article misses the point (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17839458)

Come on; you may wish that DRM was the cause of piracy, but it obviously isn't at the moment.

Piracy was around well before DRM, and I have never heard a non-technical person complain about DRM on movies(apart from the intended restriction: "So I can't back these movies up to my PC?" or even "So I can't burn a copy of this for my friend?").

This is as opposed to CDs, where DRM has certainly evolved to the point where it's an annoyance to the general public, though it'd probably be an exaggeration to say it's a chief cause of piracy.

The chief cause of movie (and music) piracy is bound to be people who want to get the product for free, in part caused by the content distributors keeping prices artificially high.

Re:Article misses the point (2, Interesting)

westlake (615356) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839562)

the studios have prioritized copy protection and anti-piracy above user experience.

User experience. OK. How about the user experience of P2P:

Bogus titles. Bonus points if "Corpse Bride" or "Over The Hedge" downloads as triple-X porno.
The camcorder video that looks like a shot of a 16mm print projected on the walls of Mammouth Cave during a blackout.
The amatuer's artifact-ridden DiVx rip. "Back to the Future" Drive-In sound.

I've played this game and I've gone back to Netflix, Movies Unlimited, The Serial Squadron.

The reason... (2, Informative)

urbanradar (1001140) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839008)

The reason why people still buy books because that is the most convenient format for reading and can't easily be copied. Your alternatives essentially come down to reading everything on a screen or printing everything out on your home printer, neither of which is very comfortable for most people. Plus, illegal copies of books are hard to come by because they aren't easy to make if you don't have access to the original source. It takes a lot of scanning and/or copywriting, e.g. a lot of work.

Hollywood not marketing its screenwriters like book authors has nothing to do with it. And the only way this realisation that books are "perfect DRM" could be applied to, say, music or movies would be by... going back to vinyl records and film reels. Yay.

Yes, but... (2, Interesting)

nexuspal (720736) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839040)

In about 10 years, everyone will have cameras on them that document EVERYTHING they see and put it in an easily retrievable form. Flip through a book and B&N, go home, and read it to your hearts content. We are headed into an infomational age nothing like you have ever seen or dreamed of...

That's not the reason (4, Insightful)

Dirtside (91468) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839056)

They argue that the missing element is that screenwriters are not marketed by Hollywood in the same way the book industry markets its authors
That's just not true, for some interlinked reasons:

1. Screenplays are fundamentally different animals than novels. They're written to be the blueprint for a movie, not something to be enjoyed in their own right. This isn't to say that a screenplay can't be enjoyable to read, but you're never* going to read a screenplay for enjoyment unless you've already seen the movie it was made into -- because if a screenplay was good enough to sell copies of it to the public, then it was more or less by definition already made into a movie.

2. Screenwriters can't be marketed by Hollywood the same way novel authors are marketed -- for one thing, the screenwriter is one of dozens, maybe hundreds of people involved in the movie's production. Even if you just consider the 10 or 15 most important people -- director, a few stars, a producer or two, writer, DP -- the money is going to focus on promoting the biggest names, and that's the stars (and maybe the director). Stars are always the most well-known people involved with a movie, and that's not just because that's who the studio markets; it's because you stare at their faces for 2 hours.

An author, by contrast, is one of only a very few people involved with the creative aspects of a novel -- even if you take an editor or two into account, the author is still responsible for 99% of what you read. So there's a single, obvious focus for the marketing effort.

Re:That's not the reason (1)

zaffir (546764) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839300)

You can't compare the two. It's easy to duplicate the movie and music "experience," with piracy. You easily do the same with a book. Sure you can have it printed, but that's exactly cheap, and reading a book on a computer screen sucks.

I'd rather read a book while holding it in my hands and lying in bed. I'm not so picky about how i watch movies, and even if i was it isn't hard to get a torrented DVD going on my home theater system.

Re:That's not the reason (2, Interesting)

kfg (145172) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839342)

you're never* going to read a screenplay for enjoyment unless you've already seen the movie it was made into -- because if a screenplay was good enough to sell copies of it to the public, then it was more or less by definition already made into a movie.

Harlen Ellison's adaptation of I,Robot, published in Asimov's Science Fiction because Isaac thought it was so good it needed to be seen, but was never going to be made into a movie.

KFG

Re:That's not the reason (1)

istartedi (132515) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839450)

You've gotten to the heart of the matter, I think. People might be a bit reluctant to screw their favorite author by pirating their work. That's because the author is a single person. You wouldn't brag on your warezing skills if the author was in the room with you. OTOH, Hollywood movies are massive collaborative efforts where the big name talent is very well paid. It's all orchestrated by a faceless corporation. If the star were in the room with you, you still might not brag on your warezing skills, but you might casually mention you haven't paid for it, and he or she might not be so upset, seeing how they've already walked out with millions of dollars for contributing a single-digit percentage to the overall effort. The director might be more pissed, but not as much as somebody who's poured all their effort into one thing, and that thing is intimately tied to them. Just about anybody in a Hollywood movie is replaceable. The movie might not be as good, but it would still work. It might even be more interesting in some cases to see what a different director or actor would do... ewww... that's kind of an apology for remakes. I may have to re-think that... but anyway, I think you're on the right track here, and I just wanted to add my own spin. Seeing how Slashdot is even more massively collaborative than any movie, you can even warez this post if you like.

What about theatre? (1)

AdamHaun (43173) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839598)

All of this is true for plays, and playwrights have no problem getting recognition.

Re:What about theatre? (1)

Anonymous McCartneyf (1037584) | more than 7 years ago | (#17840126)

Plays usually have one playwright per play. Sometimes two.
Films are often written by committee. We can have up to four writers under "written by," perhaps another four under "story idea," another if the work adapts an extant non-film, and any number of unacknowledged minor writers.

Re:What about theatre? (1)

windowpain (211052) | more than 7 years ago | (#17840296)

The author of a play is the playwright. The author of a movie is the director.

In the theater, the director's job is to work in service to the playwright to bring his vision to the stage.

In film, the screenwriter's job is to work in service to the director to give him the raw material to bring his vision to the screen.

Evidently this author of TFA is not aware of this reality.

One can certainly imagine things being different but this is how it has always been.

Hm. (1)

JoshJ (1009085) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839116)

Solution to DRM in the bittorrent age?
Get rid of it.

Everyone knows DRM doesn't stop the "pirates"- it blocks legitimate use. The "pirates" will crack it anyway.

Article Missing Point, Substance (5, Insightful)

melikamp (631205) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839144)

I don't even know where to begin with this article...

Digital Rights Management is a good thing.
Welcome to Slashdot.

A world completely free of DRM is the wishful thinking of pirates or the quixotic dream of the naive.
The author is 10 years old?

A world without DRM is a world without premium content.
Or 9, may be?

Every implementation of DRM has only hurt honest users.
Since he already stressed that DRM cannot stop piracy, doesn't it stand to reason (on his view) that DRM was specifically designed to hurt honest users?

"Perfect DRM" already exists today. [...] It's called the printed book.
It's like he has all the clues, but no lightbulb. Dead tree--hard to replicate--we need publishers' services. Digitized information--easy to replicate--publishers can kick the rocks.

In some ways, the HD ecosystem is going to buy time to help DRM reach that magic steady state that we enjoy with books.

Magic? Enjoy? The books should have been digitized like 30 years ago, and e-books are at least 5 years overdue. Thanks to copyright being infinity minus one day, some books are almost impossible to find. My personal grudge is that many great old textbooks are prohibitively expensive simply because they are rare. No one is printing them anymore, and no one is allowed to digitize them either. Enjoy? I don't think so.

And for the love of me, I have no idea how to comment on his screenwriter theme. Yeah, there are other people working behind the curtains. But if movie people themselves think that the most important and creative part is done by the actors and the director, are they going to lie to the rest of us? That makes no sense at all.

Nothing to see here (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17839150)

It's just another dude promoting artificial scarcity.

"Let's make movies hard to copy like books are hard to copy, because you don't see much piracy in books, do ya?"

One day, hopefully soon, this whole concept of scarcity of information will just vanish.

Movies and music need to be seen and heard (1)

nascarguy27 (984493) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839162)

If the US was unable to keep nuclear weapons technology secret after WW2, there is no way the MPAA can ask consumer electronics companies to keep movies and music 100% secure, especially when the whole intent of music/movies is to be seen and heard.
That says it right there. In order to play content, in must be decoded somewhere. The crackers WILL figure out where it is decoded and reverse engineer it. That's how it they did it before. And that's exactly how they'll do it again.

It's hilarious to see the DRM technology break after every iteration that it goes through. While very amusing, it shows that DRM will lose in the end. Once a movie/album/software/ebook/etc is de-DRMed, then... well, you know.

On a side note but relevant, I was trying to explain DRM to my dad, who is actually someone who doesn't know ads from results on Google. After I was done explaing, he said, "So, it just keeps honest people honest." My dad hit the nail on the head. The crackers will still figure out a way to disassemble DRM. The law-abiding goodie-two-shoes will not.

Open DRM (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17839180)

If they insist on having DRM (already a bad idea). The Movie studios need to start distributing movies in an Open DRM format. Otherwise what will happen is that whoever wins the portable video war (how hard's it to guess who it'll be ;) ) will become the only place people go to download movies. This one company will charge a massive overhead for each movie they sell. If the the movie companies used an Open DRM format and did not sell their movies under any other DRM scheme, they would benefit from 3rd parties being able to market their movies. Right now what's happening is that iTunes benefits from radio and other advertising. So this way a person who promotes a particular movie can make money off it by being able to sell it on their website (say directly off a movie reviewer's blog site). And this way people who buy crappy movies have someone directly responsible for selling them on it they can choose to trust mistrust in the future.

Music companies made a huge mistake allowing their music to be sold with DRM. And the second biggest mistake the studios made was allowing Apple to prevent fans who bought the studios' music from other sources being able to play it on the iPod. It should have been part of the deal with Apple to allow third party sold music to be able to be playable on the iPod without inconvenient DRM stripping steps. I believe the studios wanted short term benefits and totally disregarded long term consequences to themselves and the industry. I'm not surprised they're seeing a decline in music sales (caused by crappy music since musicians and people who help chart new musical direction aren't being rewarded like they should be)

Although Itunes does some promotion of songs, there is little chance for independent promoters of music to make money.

Not everyone wants a real book. (1)

Jartan (219704) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839210)

I'm sure a huge majority of people prefer a real book but I know at least a small minority would sure like to have the ability to log in and just buy it and download it. I can't count how many times I got the urge to read something late at night when the store was closed or even worse a book that sounds good is out of print and has to be ordered used.

Really what it comes down to though is that these industries have been price fixing for years. They always put pretty window dressing on it like making you buy a whole album when you want one song or some such but that's the real reason people are pirating music left and right. Any attempt to serve the customers needs properly will put that price fixing in jeopardy.

Re:Not everyone wants a real book. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17840156)

After an hour of looking for a way to legitimately download a song from some online shop, I don't think I'll do it again soon. BitTorrent is just easier.

Books are much better value for money (2, Insightful)

Anomolous Cowturd (190524) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839214)

A nice fat book will keep you company on the commute for a week or more, and if it's any good, keep you thinking long after that.

A DVD will give you two hours of mindless entertainment then merely take up shelf space.

A book costs about the same, or less than a DVD.

No contest.

Books generate much less profit. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17839680)

I agree. And also published authors of books usually do not become insanely rich. Actors, writers, producers on the other hand all got their share of the profit (sometimes hundreds of millions) when the movie was shown in the theaters. And it is much less expensive to produce DVDs than it is to print books both because of technology and because of volume.
For me giving a few [local currency unit] to the small publishing company and the author of the book is much more reasonable than throwing even more at the huge Hollywood empires.

Vast differences (3, Informative)

DrRevotron (994894) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839242)

For one, the fact that you can read a book at Barnes and Noble for free is more of a marketing strategy than just a convenience. Unless you intend to come back every day for X days to keep reading the book, you're most likely going to buy it. I doubt anyone could read an entire book during a visit to a bookstore like Barnes and Noble.

However, when it comes to movies, you're talking about a solid one to two hour viewing. If Blockbuster worked like Barnes and Noble, they'd have little to no rentals or purchases - people would watch a movie and leave.

But anyway, back to the topic. It's doubtful that any DRM will work swimmingly with BitTorrent, simply because the method with which you activate the DRM/authenticate the movie would most likely be transferred in the torrent. (Like Windows XP, you can just hand off the CD key with the ISO.)

I can see an effective DRM being an IP-based solution. For instance, a client would have the movie file downloaded and the player for that file would contact a central server for a one-time key. If the client's IP doesn't match, then no key is issued. But this has its downside as well (Dial-up and dynamic IPs... although if you're downloading at those speeds, just buy the damn DVD.)

DRM is a useless trend, just like SOA and 'Web x.0' and all the other buzzwords (People put DRM on podcasts, for Christ's sake). Give it time and it will die.

drm and bittorrent (2, Interesting)

timmarhy (659436) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839250)

there's a simple way for movie studio's to distribute their content and make money from it without it being tied to "nasty" drm. simply release their own BT client which will allow you to 2 options - buy the movie outright and allow 10 copies of it to be burnt ( you can't call that unfair, who the fuck needs more then 10 copies ) OR you can view the movie for free after you have seeded 2x the size of the movie. that way they are assured there will be plenty of freeloaders out there to support the network, they won't need to invest tons in inferstructure and no one can accuse them of heavy handed drm.

Re:drm and bittorrent (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17839484)

thats a good idea, but you still have the problem with people who have cable and very slow upload, seeding 2x 9gb will take ages, and your not even gaurenteed to be able to watch it (if the torrent dies while your seeding, but still under 2x)

Re:drm and bittorrent (1)

timmarhy (659436) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839608)

the torrent won't die because it's being seeded by a commerical system that's not gonna go offline. you also won't distribute it in mpeg2 format, that's insane, you will use mpeg4 or similar and it shouldn't be over 700 - 900megs. 1.8g isn't unreasonable to get something for nothing. it's true that cable people only have a low speed, but no scheme is perfect, and they can always just buy the movie and get it right away.

By this strategy (1)

Lane.exe (672783) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839308)

What movie companies need to do is create the movie equivalent of the book. I like paperbacks because (1) they're inexpensive and (2) they're amazingly resilient and I can take them with me everywhere I go, require no power (only light) and can provide me hours of entertainment and stimulation.

In order movies to be of the same quality, I'd need some way to make cheap, reasonably-good quality videos easily available, highly portable, and very power-effective. What we need is a decent-sized, fairly tough, fairly high-capacity video player and I'd have the book equivalent of a movie. Then, we'd need stores where I could go, plug in, and transfer an entire movie to my personal player in seconds.

Where do they get these ideas? (1)

merikari (205531) | more than 7 years ago | (#17839358)

Well it's obvious where these people come from because they see this as a marketing problem, and not a design problem.

Books are easy to carry everywhere and readability is better: print resolution is still better than most screens. Books are very usable. You can just flip pages back and forth, and everyone knows the "user interface". You don't need to buy a display device, hardware, OS, bundeled with some crappy DRM scheme.

Books are also beautiful objects to have in your bookshelf.

The term is "Digital Rights INFRINGEMENT" (1)

porkrind (314254) | more than 7 years ago | (#17840016)

Stop using the language of the enemy. It hands them an unfair advantage.

Mod me off-topic (3, Insightful)

photomonkey (987563) | more than 7 years ago | (#17840052)

but, why is it when anyone mentions free reading, it's never about libraries anymore? It's all about Borders/Barnes & Noble/etc.

Break out of the marketing and go to a library where, for once, you can't buy anything.

MPAA, DRM, libraries? (2, Interesting)

uvajed_ekil (914487) | more than 7 years ago | (#17840208)

movie industry looking for "perfect DRM" should aim for the printed book model (people still buy books even though they can read them for free at Barnes & Noble). They argue

Yes, you can read a book at some stores rather than purchasing it and taking it home, which is not true of DVD movies. But you can get a book at the library and take it home and read it, for free. And now, MANY, MANY libraries also lend DVDs, meaning you can take movies home and watch them, for free. The biggest library system in NE Ohio, at least, is usually pretty good about getting new releases (there may be a little bit of lag time) and has a fairly large catalog, though you may have to wait in line. So how long will it be until the big-money movie folks start really looking at some of our greatest national resources as their enemies? Will they include licensing restrictions that somehow prevent libraries from buying their products?

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