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DRM Causes Piracy

kdawson posted more than 7 years ago | from the obvious-when-you-think-about-it dept.

Books 413

igorsk recommends an essay by Eric Flint, editor at Baen Publishing and an author himself, over at Baen's online SF magazine, Baen Universe. In it Flint argues that, far from curbing piracy of copyrighted materials, DRM actually causes it. Quoting: "Electronic copyright infringement is something that can only become an 'economic epidemic' under certain conditions. Any one of the following: 1) The products they want... are hard to find, and thus valuable. 2) The products they want are high-priced, so there's a fair amount of money to be saved by stealing them. 3) The legal products come with so many added-on nuisances that the illegal version is better to begin with. Those are the three conditions that will create widespread electronic copyright infringement, especially in combination. Why? Because they're the same three general conditions that create all large-scale smuggling enterprises. And... Guess what? It's precisely those three conditions that DRM creates in the first place. So far from being an impediment to so-called 'online piracy,' it's DRM itself that keeps fueling it and driving it forward."

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Commodification (-1, Flamebait)

P(0)(!P(k)+P(k+1)) (1012109) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135744)

From TFA:

The only reason this debate over DRM as it applies to electronic text is still going on is simply because our opponents have what amounts to a quasi-religious and sometimes downright hysterical blind faith in the magic powers of DRM.

The MAFIAA, come to think of it, reminds me of a gaggle of wives obfuscating their pudenda; it decommoditizes tits and vag, in the end, to obfuscate them with clothes.

In fact, just as the vagina’s “quasi-religious” mystery depends upon an artificial secret; the value of cultural production depends upon an artificial scarcity.

Isn’t it commodification, after all, that the industry-Yids fear?

Re:Commodification (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18135804)

industry-Yids
I'm sorry, could you define that term please?

Re:Commodification (-1, Offtopic)

bgfay (5362) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135908)

I'm hoping that it doesn't mean what I think it means. It's often used as a disparaging term for a Jew. I have a lovely wife and two beautiful girls who are Jewish. I would hope that this is a mistake and not a concerted effort to slur.

Re:Commodification (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18136150)

I would hope that this is a mistake and not a concerted effort to slur.


And if it is an effort to slur, the best course of action is to get over it, realize you're not going to be able to "convert" anyone, and understand that he can call you or your race whatever and it does absolutely nothing to harm you in any way. Unless of course your sense of security regarding who you are depends on the approval of others, it's silly to pretend like this harms you -- he's not denying you a job, or a loan, or access to a country club, and he has not advocated that any action be taken against you. Yes, I feel this way when my own ethnicity is insulted as well because the only way to stop it is to use the police power of government to suppress speech, and that's a cure that is worse than the disease. Don't let idiots like this convince you to go down that path.

Re:Commodification (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18136174)

Hear, hear!

Re:Commodification (0, Offtopic)

Stormwatch (703920) | more than 7 years ago | (#18136334)

I have a lovely wife and two beautiful girls who are Jewish.
If you ever have a boy... well, click the link in my sig, read, and ponder.

Re:Commodification (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18135926)

Yiddish; Hebrew; Jewish

Re:Commodification (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18135966)

wow -- very telling. Parent is getting modded down for drawing attention to antisemitism. Slashdot is so popular these days!

Re:Commodification (0, Offtopic)

Broken scope (973885) | more than 7 years ago | (#18136048)

Of course he gets modded down. I mean isn't calling someone a Jew a great insult in suburban America? its not anti semitic, its just denoting how they handle money, or how they strive to gain money.

Yes, I was being sarcastic, before someone reads that wrong.

Re:Commodification (1)

Dunbal (464142) | more than 7 years ago | (#18136306)

I mean isn't calling someone a Jew a great insult in suburban America?

      Not if the person in question is, in fact, a Jew.

Re:Commodification (3, Insightful)

Quantam (870027) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135808)

No. Bad analogy. Sexuality is simple evolutionary psychology. Given enough females, a male could produce perhaps 150 children a year, while a female could at most produce 1 (assuming no twins or other such anomalies). But for men to pass on their genes they require women. Thus, female sexuality IS a scarce commodity; there's nothing artificial about it.

Re:Commodification (1, Offtopic)

ScrewMaster (602015) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135924)

Given enough females, I'm sure I could do better than 150 in the course of a year. I might need to take some vacation time when that year is up, however.

Re:Commodification (1)

Quantam (870027) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135944)

Not too much more. You only have so much sperm :P

Re:Commodification (2, Interesting)

arivanov (12034) | more than 7 years ago | (#18136142)

Bollocks,

What the GP has noted from a more social perspective is actually valid on the physiological level. IIRC all ova in a female are completely developed before she reaches sexual maturity and after that dormant. During each ovulation one (usually) undergoes the final stage in its development and is secreted. No new ova are created.

At the same time male spermatocites which divide to produce spermatosoids are produced constantly (albeit at a decreasing rate) until the males die. New sperm is created all the time.

So the female vs male sexuality note is actually valid all the way down to the physiological and biochemical level. As far as procreation is concerned male sexuality is not a scarce resource. Female is.

Re:Commodification (1)

Henry V .009 (518000) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135992)

Hmm. I'm pretty sure that I could produce at least 2000 kids without really trying. Given enough attractive women (assuming 100% inception rate) and still having a day job. Without a day job, if I made it my only effort in life, I could possibly hit 3 times that.

And in case you're wondering, only some of my girlfriends complain about it.

Re:Commodification (1)

maxume (22995) | more than 7 years ago | (#18136088)

"assuming 100% inception rate"

Assuming magic, I can do anything!

6 a day would be a feat(maybe not for the first several days, but how about on day 40? You can't use it if it falls off). 18 a day would be superhuman.

Re:Commodification (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18136090)

>>And in case you're wondering, only some of my girlfriends complain about it.

King Henry VIII is that you?

Remember: 80% per year. (1)

Kadin2048 (468275) | more than 7 years ago | (#18136198)

That 100% inception rate is a hell of an exaggeration; last time I looked at the FDA statistics, only about 80% of "average" couples (so, we assume they have sex at the average American frequency of around 2-3 times a week) get pregnant in a year of having sex, without any birth control at all. The per-encounter impregnation rate is actually lower than you'd think...it just seems to always occur to people when they don't want it to.

Re:Commodification (1)

Tx (96709) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135972)

The MAFIAA, come to think of it, reminds me of a gaggle of wives obfuscating their pudenda; it decommoditizes tits and vag, in the end, to obfuscate them with clothes.

And then along comes Britney Spears [phun.org] to commoditize again. Although in her case I say decommoditization is the way forward.

Re:Commodification (2, Insightful)

Serious Callers Only (1022605) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135980)

The MAFIAA, come to think of it, reminds me of a gaggle of wives obfuscating their pudenda;Isn't it commodification, after all, that the industry-Yids fear?


Only on Slashdot would this kind of tripe be regarded as 'Insightful'.

To the original poster - please explain to us how you 'decommoditize' sexual organs (are yours commodities too, assuming you have some?), and who the industry-Yids are, and what you mean by Yid? ?

To those who modded it insightful, I have to wonder what possible nugget of truth you feel could be hidden in this anti-semitic rant which seems to regard all females (and particularly wives?) as commodities??

Sixth column of a series (5, Informative)

Robotech_Master (14247) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135748)

Other editorials in the series include

Column #1 [baens-universe.com]
Column #2 [baens-universe.com]
Column #3 [baens-universe.com]
Column #4 [baens-universe.com]
Column #5 [baens-universe.com]

All of which are available in their entirety, despite the "1/3 to 1/2" thing.

Good reading.

However (5, Insightful)

Mateo_LeFou (859634) | more than 7 years ago | (#18136120)

I have bad news for the author: information still wants to be free

"There are some people out there, possessed by the firm delusion that "information wants to be free"--as if bits of data had legs and went walking about on their own..."

This is a strawman, and dumb. The contention that "information wants to be free" is a catchy way of saying "the properties of digital goods are such that their natural marginal cost is zero or practically indistinguishable from zero."

Bad news for most people who would like to marginalize/otherwise dismiss the free culture argument: the economic basis for the contention that "information wants to be free" is rock solid. Scientific. To escape it you have to resort to name-calling etc., as here.

Re:However (4, Insightful)

Kadin2048 (468275) | more than 7 years ago | (#18136216)

Bad news for most people who would like to marginalize/otherwise dismiss the free culture argument: the economic basis for the contention that "information wants to be free" is rock solid. Scientific. To escape it you have to resort to name-calling etc., as here.

Moreover, there is an information-theory perspective as well, involving the inherent nonconservative nature of information in its most basic forms. Digitization brings "information" closer to that basic form, by detaching it more thoroughly from physical media (books, tapes, etc.) and allows its basic attributes to come forward.

There's nothing you can do to put that genie back in the bottle.

Re:Sixth column of a series (1, Flamebait)

Overly Critical Guy (663429) | more than 7 years ago | (#18136288)

I have to strongly disagree with the premise of this article. DRM doesn't cause piracy; people do. I can't in good conscious begin to pretend that humans are mindless drones reacting to circumstances who have no personal responsibility in what they do. Blaming technology for people's actions is a road you don't want to take, or else someone could just as easily argue that the Internet "causes" child pornography or video games cause violence. Slashdotters often defend technologies against those in the press who blame it for the actions of a criminal few, but that goes both ways, and just because you don't like DRM for whatever reasons doesn't mean you should begin to blame it for piracy in some disingenuous attempt to turn the tables on the RIAA (please stop with the "MAFIAA" nonsense). To do so means you adopt positions when they suit your agenda. People are the ones who pirate, not DRM schemes--end of story.

If DRM causes piracy... (1)

idiotwithastick (1036612) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135768)

What does lack of DRM cause? If there is no DRM, would people all of a sudden decide to go buy stuff instead of pirating it? Doesn't seem very likely to me.

Re:If DRM causes piracy... (1)

smitty_one_each (243267) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135834)

What does lack of DRM cause?
Freedom, in a way similar to a lack of sickness 'causing' health.

Re:If DRM causes piracy... (3, Interesting)

Dunbal (464142) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135862)

If there is no DRM, would people all of a sudden decide to go buy stuff instead of pirating it? Doesn't seem very likely to me.


      And of course, you're completely mistaken. I remember back when PC's were brand new, in the late 70's - every single one of us had a pirated copy of Microsoft's "Flight Simulator" program. Guess what - enough people actually paid for it (it was a good program!), and Microsoft continued to push out new versions. The Flight Simulator division at MS is still alive and well today - despite all the piracy.

      Your gut feeling flies into the face of the actual facts. But this is what we've been saying all along - "piracy actualy PROMOTES sales"...

Re:If DRM causes piracy... (1)

ScrewMaster (602015) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135990)

Oddly enough, many would. I would. In my case, for example, content producers are losing their share of my income simply because I won't buy their offerings if they do have Digital Restrictions Management. Maybe I'm an anomaly outside of the Slashdot crowd, but everyone I've spoken to who has had a bad encounter with DRM (and they are legion) has come to the same conclusion. It just isn't worth the hassle, and the risk. Frankly, I don't need most of the products that are currently being DRM'ed. I just don't. Okay, I do buy the occasional DVD, but they'll only keep getting my money so long as I know I can strip the DRM if I so choose. If I cannot do that, I can't protect my investment. Consequently, if the distribution folks ever succeed in creating unbreakable DRM, or preventing me from accessing the requisite tools, my money will stay in my pocket. They have to earn my respect before they can earn my dollars.

Re:If DRM causes piracy... (1)

spitzak (4019) | more than 7 years ago | (#18136144)

Absolutely, removal of DRM would increase sales substantially, possibly to a phenominal level.

There are many, many people (like me) who are not buying anything because the DRM means it will not play on all my devices. I have poked around the Itunes site plenty and played the samples, but never bought anything, just said "I would buy that right now if they got rid of the DRM".

It does not apply to me, but I believe there will be substantial sales to people who intend to violate copyright. Somebody may be far more likely to buy a song if they know they can give it to all their friends. This is, I believe, an even larger market than people like me.

In both cases the users if they want the song, are forced to "steal" it, but would likely buy it, partly to be legal and not feel guilty, but mostly because it would be far easier to buy than steal.

Re:If DRM causes piracy... (5, Insightful)

Thangodin (177516) | more than 7 years ago | (#18136188)

This reminds me of the old days of the Commodore 64, when the copy protection schemes sent the disk drive head skating over to track 0. The C64 had no sensor to keep the head in bounds, so it would slam against a hard stop, throwing the head out of alignment, quickly ruining the drive (constant realignment gradually made the drive unusable.) Even if you bought a legit copy of software, you had to use a cracked version or you would destroy your drive. Eventually most people gave up on buying the software altogether.

In fact, the reason that most of the people I know didn't buy a copy of XP, and won't buy Vista, is the heavy handed DRM attached to it, which requires you to get permission from Microsoft to run your computer after 5 hardware changes. I can make 5 hardware changes in 5 minutes when I'm testing hardware. There is no way that I am going to spend half the night on the phone calling Microsoft. If I'm having a problem with hardware, I don't need the additional aggravation. I have a legit copy on my laptop--which never changes hardware--but I'll never install one on my desktop machine.

The Individual Sense of Fairplay is the Best DRM (1)

yintercept (517362) | more than 7 years ago | (#18136258)

The article introduces the reader to the reason to why the lack of DRM would not lead to mass piracy. It is because people in developed countries are (or at least used to) have a highly developed sense of ethics.

People do not generally "pirate" an electronic text in order to sell it for a profit. They do it in order to get the text itself, for their own use.

There is one major exception to this rule. But that involves people who can operate openly on a mass production scale in countries which do not enforce international intellectual property rights.

DRM came to play because there was a massive effort to engage in automated copyright infringement. We could have completely avoided DRM if cultural institutions, like Universities, came out against mass piracy. Instead the wanks in the academia came out spouting nonsense about how mass piracy was the new social revolution that would transform society.

Since our cultural institutions were lauding mass piracy, individuals wanted to be part of the technology revolution felt compelled to join in on the piracy frenzy.

The market for DRM was created by content owners looking at the mass piracy advocated by our social insitutations and decided that they needed excessively instrusive mechanisms to protect the content they created.

It was the mass automation of piracy coupled with social leaders egging people on that created the need for DRM. IMHO, if it were not for that idiocy, we could have gotten by enforcing copyright with the individual sense of ethics [plusroot.com] as this article contends.

indeed (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18135772)

Couple of weeks ago I bought a movie online, which turned out to be DRM infected so I could not play it under Linux. I had to use Windows and FairPlay stripped the DRM from it to access the AVI inside.

Do you think I care this movie is now being copied by my friends?

Re:indeed (2, Interesting)

unleashedgamers (855464) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135916)

I have close to some 500 CD's, I don't have a CD player so I load them on my computer. Of the last 30 CD's I have bought about 10 of them have had some DRM so I cant load them on my computer (linux) if they don't work on my computer they are useless to me Because I cant listen to them so I have given up on buying CD's and now download them of the internet, why should I buy the CD's if I cant use them? (Most of the CD's with the DRM did no say they had DRM on them so I don't want to gamble my money on if I can listen to music or not)

Re:indeed (1)

Nom du Keyboard (633989) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135978)

I guess holding down the Shift key doesn't work for you.

.

.

.

.

.

.
(for the lame ones among you who didn't get the joke, yes I know he's using Linux.)

Re:indeed (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18136096)

Uh? Pressing the shift key under windows would make the DRM CD *not* work.

You didn't know it was "DRM infected"? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18136126)

Ok... So you didn't check to see if it was DRMed and that if would play under Linux, but you went ahead and bought it anyway?

Sounds to me you are ether really stupid & shouldn't be using a computer, or are just spewing some crap for an "DRM IS EVIL" example?

No wonder people, like me, don't trust any anecdotal evidence posted on sites like this one...

Cigarettes and MP3s (2, Interesting)

Graphic_Content (1047676) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135774)

This article makes perfect sense on every aspect noted. This is exactly why MP3s are so heavily pirated. I must be honest though, I still purchase CDs when I find new music that I like, but I will never ever purchase MP3s with DRM protection.

He's got it right... (4, Insightful)

dmayle (200765) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135782)

I bought XIII and had to pirate it to play it in my laptop (without the CD)

I wanted to buy KT Tunstall's CD, but since I listen to my music on the computer, I had to pirate it (it's copy-protected)

My wife and I have a collection of some 200 CD's, all of which are ripped to my computer, but we haven't bought a new CD in almost a year.

There's a limit as to when we start pushing our customers too far, and they start to push back

Re:He's got it right... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18135864)

I bought XIII and had to pirate it to play it in my laptop (without the CD)
 
You bought it, that means you didn't pirate it. Let's at least familiarize ourselves with the proper terms.
 
  My wife and I have a collection of some 200 CD's, all of which are ripped to my computer, but we haven't bought a new CD in almost a year.Just goes to show you that you're little more than a thief. the bands you "support" are losing money in this deal and the RIAA is still strong. what a faggot.

Re:He's got it right... (1)

quickgold192 (1014925) | more than 7 years ago | (#18136194)

I bought XIII and had to pirate it to play it in my laptop (without the CD) You bought it, that means you didn't pirate it. Let's at least familiarize ourselves with the proper terms. He was making the point the the DRM caused him to download the tracks without paying for them, instead of simply not wanting to pay for them.

Re:He's got it right... (1)

jdogg82 (765548) | more than 7 years ago | (#18136310)

I imported KT Tunstall's CD onto my computer and iPod no problem...

Sounds Familiar (3, Insightful)

cfvgcfvg (942576) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135786)

It sure sounds alot like the reversed cause and effect of the "War on Drugs" or "War on Terrorism". Will the government ever learn to back off and let the free market guide itself? And yes, I know the *AA's are the ones pushing for more laws and arrests, but they wouldn't be succeeding without the blessing of the government.

Re:Sounds Familiar (2, Funny)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135868)

I'm puzzled, how would the market solve the war on terrorism?

Re:Sounds Familiar (1)

Winckle (870180) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135912)

They open a halal McDonalds in Saudi Arabia, the Would Be Suicide Bombers love the cheap tasty food so much they decide they like America and won't attack it?

Re:Sounds Familiar (4, Insightful)

maxume (22995) | more than 7 years ago | (#18136180)

FlySafe airlines would have to compete with FlyCheap airlines. Individuals could make their own choices about how much security they thought they needed in the air. A bunch of people would die, and FlyCheap's assets would be bought out by FlySafeEnough airlines.

(what percentage of people interact with 'the war on terror' anywhere else?)

It all depends on what value you assign to the lives of the various other people on the planet; if you use the apparent acceptable rate of car accident deaths(~1/10000 a year in the US), we are spending way too much on anti terror measures(the death rate due to terrorism is way lower than that for US citizens, even if you include 9/11 and soldiers dying in Iraq and so forth). Basically, the free market would ignore it and move on, much to the chagrin of the dead, but to the profit of the living.

Re:Sounds Familiar (1)

El Cubano (631386) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135874)

It sure sounds alot like the reversed cause and effect of the "War on Drugs" or "War on Terrorism". Will the government ever learn to back off and let the free market guide itself?

The War on Drugs and the War on Terrorism are two completely different things. The drug cartels are motivated by money. The terrorists are motivated primarily by religion and hatred. If we get every single drug user in America clean, the demand will disappear and there will be no more monetary incentive for the cartels to bring illegal drugs to the US. What demand are we going to get rid of to make the terrorists go away? Short of every American committing suicide at the same time, the terrorists won't quit.

Now, in economic matters, the government won't back off and let the free market guide things because that is not what people what want. Opposition to NAFTA? Steel tariffs? Automobile tariffs? Mucking with currency? People are in favor of the free market, until it hurts them personally.

Re:Sounds Familiar (3, Insightful)

ShieldW0lf (601553) | more than 7 years ago | (#18136092)

The war on drugs is about ensuring that citizens are addicted to indigenous drugs, and that the profits are centrally controlled.

That's why it's OK for Americans to be addicted to cigarettes and alcohol but not cocaine or crystal meth.

Having everyone addicted to cocaine is a threat to national sovereignty.

Having them addicted to meth is a threat to profits.

The free market would have everyone buying cheap meth or homemade shine, or addicted to foreign produced coke.

As it stands now, they're buying whiskey, cigarettes and cough syrup, which is just the way those on top like it.

The war on terror, on the other hand, is easy to fix.

Keep your military and your CIA at home, and there will be no terrorism.

The terrorists are after vengence because they have been and continue to be systematically wronged. By Americans.

Well, it might be too late now. I imagine there are a lot of orphaned children who aren't going to forget what was done to them.

Yeah... come to think of it... I think you guys are fucked.

Re:Sounds Familiar (2, Insightful)

Planesdragon (210349) | more than 7 years ago | (#18136160)

The war on drugs is about ensuring that citizens are addicted to indigenous drugs, and that the profits are centrally controlled.

Only if you count the war on cannabis as "the war on drugs." If you exclude that miscatagorized weed, you get almost exactly the purposes they say the War on Drugs is for.

If it weren't for use if illegal drugs, Richard Pryor would still be able to perform and Kurt Cobain would likely still be alive.

Re:Sounds Familiar (2)

arivanov (12034) | more than 7 years ago | (#18136298)

Keep your military and your CIA at home, and there will be no terrorism.

Err... Not entirely correct.

The sole mistake Americans make is by automatically assuming that "The enemy of my enemy is my friend". All other mistakes including sending the military and the CIA are a mere consequence of this one.

Bin Laden was made out of nothing through the enemy of my enemy principle. He is not the only one jinn to be unbottled in this manner. Plenty of others.

Re:Sounds Familiar (1)

WilliamSChips (793741) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135888)

DRM was not invented by the government and would exist even without government involvement in the form of the DMCA which is a paper tiger anyways. DRM was created by the "free" market, which is largely a libertarian fantasy anyways. That being said the "War on (non-Tobacco-or-Alcohol) Drugs" and "War on (non-Israeli-or-Saudi) Terror" are total crocks of shit.

Re:Sounds Familiar (1)

Hennell (1005107) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135894)

Yes but governments don't exist without the blessings of groups like the *AA's. If lobby groups can't get the government to do what they want, they either stop 'donate' money until they do, or give money to the other side on the condition they'll do what their told.

Re:Sounds Familiar (5, Insightful)

ajs318 (655362) | more than 7 years ago | (#18136066)

That was what I was thinking -- it's just the same as the War On Some Drugs. Although most recreational drugs theoretically should cost pennies per dose (poppies, cannabis, hallucinogenic mushrooms and cacti, coca and valerian all grow wild, and they're just the ones I can think off off the top of my head), the very fact that they are illegal introduces artificial scarcity and allows dealers to control prices. And such "legal" ways of getting high as there are, are a PITB. There are medicines you can buy from a pharmacy that will get you off your tits (e.g. Paramol {Paracetamol and Dihydrocodeine}; Benylin Chesty Coughs -- two drugs in one really, Original {Diphenhydramine} is a downer, Non-Drowsy {Guaifenesin} is a mild upper; Night Nurse {diphenhydramine, same ingredient as Benylin Original} and the perennial standby, Kaolin and Morphine mixture -- worth faking a tummy ache to be given a dose of) if you take enough of them, and of course there's booze ..... but getting p!$$&d really isn't quite the same thing. It's too dirty a "high". There are legal plant extracts but the reason that most of them haven't been banned is that they aren't really much cop (though Sida Cordifolia isn't bad ..... name's a bit off-putting if you speak French though).

Most of the crime is created in response to the problem of illegality. Junkies steal to buy heroin because it's sold at vastly inflated prices by dealers, they daren't seek help for fear of dropping their mates in the s#!t, and anyway they're already criminals just for having a toot so what's a bit of thieving between friends? Tobacco is more addictive than heroin (to the extent you can compare an illegal drug with a legal one), yet smokers are generally law-abiding. Apart from the ones who are bleeding the National Health Service dry by buying tobacco abroad ..... we should send them to Belgium to get treated if they get cancer ..... but I digress.

you know what I love? (1)

rucs_hack (784150) | more than 7 years ago | (#18136336)

That hollywood only exists because they moved to california to escape opressive patents and use the patented technology without paying rights holders..

That makes me giggle.

Nonsense (1, Interesting)

boer (653809) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135790)

Does not make too much sense to me.

1) Legal content can be easily found online.
2) DRM-protected content is cheap - cheaper than their physical equivalents.
3) Users who know what to expect will not be dissappointed. I know I am a happy iTunes + iPod user. Then again I do not spend my time inventing all sorts of scenarios how this model could be limiting my life when it is not.

Re:Nonsense (5, Informative)

flyingfsck (986395) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135842)

Many Baen books are available on-line for free. They found that whenever they relesae a free book, sales of all books of that author increase and the sales of the free book takes off. The fact is that people like the value of a real book, while the online version gives them a chance to read some books in a series and evaluate the author.

So whether it makes sense or not is moot. Baen proved that free books increase sales enormously.

Re:Nonsense (1)

vurian (645456) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135882)

I know it's true... I recently bought the advance reader's copy of 1634: the baltic war for $15,-- and discovered that over the past few years I've spent about a hundred dollars buying electronic books from Baen. And I've bought a couple of hardbacks, too. Just because I discovered in their free library that among the really sicko Baen authors like John Ringo there are a couple of authors that can be counted on to produce a Good Read.

And -- that hundred dollars is pure profit for Baen -- no paper costs, no distribution costs -- and a happy customer.

Re:Nonsense (1)

maxume (22995) | more than 7 years ago | (#18136228)

Baen proved that free Baen books increase Baen sales enormously.

How reflective of the general population are their customers?

Re:Nonsense (4, Insightful)

El Cubano (631386) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135850)

1) Legal content can be easily found online.

Only if you use their choice of OS, their choice of browser, their choice of media player, their choice of hardware, etc.

2) DRM-protected content is cheap - cheaper than their physical equivalents.

I'm not to familiar with music, but ebooks sure don't follow this. I've often seen paper books for $60 and their electronic equivalents for $50. Only $10? I don't think so. Publishers claim that the majority of the cost of a book is printing, binding and shipping. All of those costs are gone with ebooks. Now you have server costs (much smaller than distribution costs for real books). So, it may cost slightly less, but is certainly not cheaper considering what you are giving up. Of course, you still have to be using their choice of software (OS, reader, etc), as few outfits provide unencumbered ebooks in PDF format or something.

3) Users who know what to expect will not be dissappointed. I know I am a happy iTunes + iPod user. Then again I do not spend my time inventing all sorts of scenarios how this model could be limiting my life when it is not.

Users expect to be able to use and move their stuff around. That is sadly not always possible. iTunes may be the exception, but I don't know not having used it personally.

Only if you like Apple. (1)

Rachel Lucid (964267) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135896)

Now, since I have a iPod to begin with, buying into Apple's system is fine by me. If I had a different player, then I wouldn't be.

The fact of the matter is that a) Not all material is available via Apple, and b) even if it was, the entire notion of buying into Apple's system to screw the **AA is still robbing Peter to pay Paul.

Re:Nonsense (2, Insightful)

Nom du Keyboard (633989) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135906)

2) DRM-protected content is cheap - cheaper than their physical equivalents.


Weren't you listening??? DRM protected content is much less useful than the physical equivalent. To some people it's worth nothing at all since they can't play it on their own preferred music player. So they look for content they actually use.


And while the music industry has yet to lose a sale from me because of illegal downloading, they're not producing much I want to hear these days either. Hip-Hop, and Rap Music (an oxymoron if there ever was one) are not on my playlists. The Beatles are, but they can't be bought on-line yet.

Re:Nonsense (1)

d34thm0nk3y (653414) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135920)

3) Users who know what to expect will not be dissappointed. I know I am a happy iTunes + iPod user. Then again I do not spend my time inventing all sorts of scenarios how this model could be limiting my life when it is not.

Neither do I. See, I already know that if you want to buy a Creative MP3 player that you are screwed. Now you do too, no time wasted.

Re:Nonsense (1)

tomstdenis (446163) | more than 7 years ago | (#18136060)

legal 128kbps mp3 == not useful.

itunes uses AAC and from I've read sounds decent, but it's still DRM laden.

What people want is to buy CDs and know that they're actually CDs and not some data CD with PCM tracks "hidden" on it. In short, people want what they're prepared to pay for.

Tom

Re:Nonsense (1)

phantomfive (622387) | more than 7 years ago | (#18136176)

3) Users who know what to expect will not be dissappointed. I know I am a happy iTunes + iPod user. Then again I do not spend my time inventing all sorts of scenarios how this model could be limiting my life when it is not.

Exactly. The truth of the matter is, that if all music is DRMd, and there is no other way to get it, there will be NO piracy, and people will buy it just as they did in the days before music sharing was possible. This is likely an impossible scenario, but it is such a seductive dream that the industry is pursuing it like a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. Even if it gets farther at every step, they can't resist it. Actually it's probably more like the Sirens of Ulysses. Dang. Curse slashdot for making me think more about the metaphor than my actual point.

And it does something else (1)

marcel-jan.nl (647348) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135814)

Ever since I found out I could not play an DVD-audio on my PC when I have my connected digital speaker system, did you think I ever bought one DVD-audio?

If only the UK goverment realised this. (2, Insightful)

Xest (935314) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135816)

Honestly, the response to the recent petition to the UK goverment to ban DRM almost sounded like it was produced for the goverment by the RIAA and Macrovision combined. The response in full:

Digital rights issues have been gaining increasing prominence as innovation accelerates, more and more digital media products and services come onto the market and the consumer wants to get access to digital content over different platforms. Many content providers have been embedding access and management tools to protect their rights and, for example, prevent illegal copying. We believe that they should be able to continue to protect their content in this way. However, DRM does not only act as a policeman through technical protection measures, it also enables content companies to offer the consumer unprecedented choice in terms of how they consume content, and the corresponding price they wish to pay.

It is clear though that the needs and rights of consumers must also be carefully safeguarded. It is reasonable for consumers to be informed what is actually being offered for sale, for example, and how and where the purchaser will be able to use the product, and any restrictions applied. While there is good reason to expect the market to reach a balance as these new markets develop, it is important that consumers' interests are maintained in the meantime.

Apart from the APIG (All Party Internet Group) report on DRM referred to in your petition, Digital Rights issues are an important component in other major HMG review strands on Intellectual Property, New Media and the Creative Economy. In particular, the independent Gowers Review of Intellectual Property commissioned by the Chancellor of the Exchequer, published its report on 6th December 2006 as part of the Chancellor's Pre-Budget Report. Recommendations include introducing a limited private copying exception by 2008 for format shifting for works published after the date that the law comes into effect. There should be no accompanying levies for consumers. Also making it easier for users to file notice of complaints procedures relating to Digital Rights Management tools by providing an accessible web interface on the Patent Office website by 2008 and that DTI should investigate the possibility of providing consumer guidance on DRM systems through a labelling convention without imposing unnecessary regulatory burdens.

Isn't that what they want? (5, Funny)

ViX44 (893232) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135832)

Step 1: Complain about drop-in-the-ocean piracy for a decade.
Step 2: Get DMCA on your side so you can make a criminal out of anyone at will.
Step 3: Sell defective products. When people are compelled to pirate on a larger scale because the Disney DVD they rented for the kids keeps fading in and out visually and audiably, or skips and dies on a particular scene...
Step 4: Point at all the new, higher piracy figures and dance around singing about how the piracy problem is getting worse and how you need more DRM power.
Step 5: Wait for the sheep to get used to the new order.

Fortunately, it's unlikely this will work. Look at DVD advertisements. I recently popped in Joe's Apartment (it was free and I like bad films) and there was not trailers, commercials, or even a stop at the menu screen. Straight to reel one. A short while back I was watching a new release (I forget the title) and it was telling me all about how the new HD-DVD (or Blueray, I wasn't paying much attention) is going to be worth buying new hardware at shocking prices because the disc will play the film immediately. ...apparently the ads and menu page were snuck into the DVD ISO standard when we were sleeping.

Thus, the cycle is complete; the studios received just enough annoyed customer complaints about the previews, ads, and intro garbage that they started making them skipable, or at least fastforwardable, and now they're going to temporarily give us immediate play back. Aren't we loved?

Frankly, I don't think it's really the ads that ticked people off -- we've been tolerating them since '46. It's the fact that no one who pushes a button on a remote control wants to see a red X or Ø appear. They want action.

Re:Isn't that what they want? (1)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135904)

Step 3: Sell defective products. When people are compelled to pirate on a larger scale because the Disney DVD they rented for the kids keeps fading in and out visually and audiably, or skips and dies on a particular scene...

Skips and dies on a scene? Do you have a source for that? I've never seen that as a problem except for very abused DVDs, and that's the problem of with the business renting it, not the company that made the original disc. The renting company should provide a non-scratched DVD in replacement.

Re:Isn't that what they want? (3, Informative)

ViX44 (893232) | more than 7 years ago | (#18136020)

I've worked part-time in a video store, so I watch films, new disks and old, frequently. Trends I've noticed include:

  Fade-in/fade-out. Seems to be a decendant of the old Macrovision system. I've seen it happen a few times, notably when I popped The Fox and the Hound (not the most recent issue) in the store's DVD player. I've run other films, Disney and otherwise, that played properly. Amongst customers, I've received multiple independent complaints of the fading problem specifically on academy (4:3) aspect discs -- they try the widescreen and it plays normally, so this may be a move to extinct academy.
  Glitched chapters. I bought my father Dances with Wolves -- the complete cut with the pretty box -- but he said it wouldn't play correctly, getting stuck or glitching in particular scenes. I ran it on my computer and there it too glitched and faulted. Both my father's player and the DVD drive I used were Sony, so let the conspiracy theories abound. Physical damage can cause read errors of course, but DwW was bad out of the box. I've handled similar complaints at work. Even if a disk isn't brand new and has hairline scratches, that isn't enough to cause catastrophic playback errors, when I've seen perfect playback from disks that look like they were used for air hockey.

As for worn discs, my store's policy is if a disc receives two complaints it's pulled, but for old fims that we rent off for free 80% of the time anyway, there is no replacement of the title. New films we'll give the customer a different disc of the same title, but if that fails as well, and often it does, there's not much we can do about it since the whole run doesn't work in particular players.

Re:Isn't that what they want? Not Quite! (4, Insightful)

Nom du Keyboard (633989) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135954)

Frankly, I don't think it's really the ads that ticked people off -

Not so fast here. The ads may not have ticked you off the first time you played the disc. But what about the second time? After all, nobody buys a DVD to only play once.

Laws == Crime (5, Insightful)

sinistre (59027) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135870)

The more laws you have - the more crime you'll see.

Re:Laws == Crime (2, Interesting)

GiovanniZero (1006365) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135938)

If only we had no laws there could be no crime! Then wouldn't we be happy! Sure murders, assaults and rapes would go unpunished. But that's because there is nothing to punish because they're not crimes!

Re:Laws == Crime (2, Informative)

ScrewMaster (602015) | more than 7 years ago | (#18136018)

No, but when you start having vast quantities of unnecessary or harmful laws on the books, you will see more "crime", although it's crime that is crime in name only.

Re:Laws == Crime (2, Insightful)

Dunbal (464142) | more than 7 years ago | (#18136212)

Sure murders, assaults and rapes would go unpunished.

      I guarantee you that they would not go unpunished. The punishment in an anarchistic society could even be rather extreme. I'd kill you, and your entire family. Who would stop me?

dvds (4, Insightful)

Pompatus (642396) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135872)

It's true for me that the quality of downloaded movies is better than the dvd I can rent at blockbuster. I couldn't beleive all the CRAP that goes on DVDs now. It was an inconvenience before that I had to click play a couple of times through menus to watch the movie, but now there are COMMERCIALS!!! WTF!!! Scroll through a list of movies, double click on a file and have the movie start, vs keeping track of disks (I wont even mention scratched disks), navigating through menu systems, watching 10 minutes of commercials and previews I dont care about. Hmmm. Tough choice.

Re:dvds (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18135986)

I couldn't beleive all the CRAP that goes on DVDs now. It was an inconvenience before that I had to click play a couple of times through menus to watch the movie, but now there are COMMERCIALS!!! WTF!!!

True. The last DVD I bought was 28 Days Later, which had unskippable adverts that you had to watch before playing the film. That was a few years ago, and I haven't bought a DVD since. I find the whole idea of them forcing me to watch adverts before I can play the DVD I bought offensive.

Now I download instead. I don't get any unskippable adverts any more.

Re:dvds (1)

Hucko (998827) | more than 7 years ago | (#18136076)

On a similar note, you get to pay to to watch ads when you decide to go out for a enjoyable night at the movies; up to 1/2 an hour of your night is taken up watch local ads (they don't make the movie cheaper), previews and brainwashing.

Re:dvds (2, Interesting)

ScrewMaster (602015) | more than 7 years ago | (#18136206)

My local theaters have been doing that for years. At first they'd show a half hour of crap, so people just began to show up half an hour after showtime. Now they may do fifteen minutes, they may show up to fifty-five minutes (I sat through almost an hour of local car dealerships, florists and fast-food restaurants begging me for business.) Really torques me into a pretzel. Let me tell you, the back row of seats has gotten much more popular recently (if you've got to wait an hour you might as well enjoy yourself, I guess.)

It's also reduced the amount of money I spend on tickets to about ten percent of what it used to be. I mean, if I know, in advance, that no matter how good the movie I'm going to be frustrated and annoyed by the time it starts I have to think twice about going. So now we find other ways to entertain ourselves on an evening out. I hear studio execs complaining about theater revenue every so often: my advice to them would be a. produce more films worth the admission price and b. skip the goddamn commercials. Nobody likes commercials, especially after we paid to view your product! That's just sleazy, any way you slice it. I register the same complaint about cable TV, which is why I don't have it.

Yes, I know that the theater owners have their own sob story, about how the studios and distribution companies have squeezed all the profit out of theater operation so they have to subsidize their businesses with advertising. Now that may be, but conversely I am under no obligation to support what has become a disappointing experience.

Must agree here. (5, Interesting)

SharpFang (651121) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135928)

I got some coupons for free mp3 that came with chips I buy on regular basis. Big campaing, "free, legal MP3".
So I decided to "cash them in". So I login to the site described on the coupon. "Sorry, but this site requires Internet Explorer 6 or higher".
Then registration process, asking me for granny's dog's name and so on. Then confirmation email. Then it tells me to download their player. Then the files which are not MP3 but some of their own DRM'd format. And of course unplayable in anything but their crappy player. No way to use them in a portable mp3 player, no easy way of burning them to a CD (outside of ripping audio mixer channel) and of course no way of playing them on another computer, even with said player installed (need login). Ah, and no playback without network connection.

Thanks, no "Legal MP3", even for free, please.

Mostly rubbish (1)

jfengel (409917) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135960)

Downloading happens because people like free stuff. Trying to analyze the marginal reasons for a few percent of them misses the earth-spanning forest for a few twigs.

1) The products they want... are hard to find, and thus valuable.

Most "rare" materials aren't available in DRM form. What causes the copyright infringement isn't the DRM but the fact that you can't get it at all. If they're available with DRM, then the supply is large: just go pay for it and download it.

2) The products they want are high-priced, so there's a fair amount of money to be saved by stealing them.

What is DRMed and also "high-priced"? Songs are a buck on iTunes. Movies are twenty bucks on DVD. It may be more than you want to pay but it's not a vast amount of money.

I can think of a few examples, like the language CDs I like (Pimsleur). They're expensive. But that's the minority of downloads. Again, DRM doesn't cause the infringement; it's the fact that these are expensive to produce and they're of great value, driving up the price. They'd be downloaded even without DRM.

3) The legal products come with so many added-on nuisances that the illegal version is better to begin with.

Here he's got an argument, albeit a small one. iTMS is extremely convenient on 95%+ of the systems in the world, but not for Linux. And you can't buy its songs and use it on your non-iPod MP3 player.

But again, iPod owns the market, and so do Windows and Mac users. For the vast majority of illegal downloaders, you can't chalk it up either Linux or their MP3 player. Nor to the very few people who want to do something complicated, like edit the music.

Yeah, it happens. But mostly it's the fact that people like to get stuff for free, DRM or no DRM.

Re:Mostly rubbish (3, Informative)

Robotech_Master (14247) | more than 7 years ago | (#18136080)

Most "rare" materials aren't available in DRM form. What causes the copyright infringement isn't the DRM but the fact that you can't get it at all. If they're available with DRM, then the supply is large: just go pay for it and download it.
That's part of Flint's point. If there's no ebook version of it at all, a for-sale DRM-free ebook version of it is so "rare" as to be unavailable. But if it's available with DRM, then a for-sale DRM-free ebook version of it--which is, again, what people want--is also so rare as to be unavailable.

If I'm looking for an apple, and you offer me a cart full of oranges and say, "See, there's plenty of fruit," it's still not going to satisfy my desire for an apple.

What is DRMed and also "high-priced"? Songs are a buck on iTunes. Movies are twenty bucks on DVD. It may be more than you want to pay but it's not a vast amount of money.
Songs are the exception, and that's mainly because Steve Jobs bullied the music companies into going with the 99 cent price point. You can bet they'd raise the prices if they could. And even Steve Jobs doesn't like DRM any longer; neither does Bill Gates.

But look at some of the books on eReader [ereader.com] . For instance, A March into Darkness by Robert Newcomb [ereader.com] . $17.95 for the DRM'd ebook at eReader, $17.79 for the unprotected hardcover at Amazon [amazon.com] . Granted, this probably isn't the best example because the list price for the hardcover is actually $26, and you can knock 10% off the eReader price by using their newsletter discount code, but it only took me two minutes of searching to find it. If I wanted to look longer, I could probably find a lot more egregious examples. And anyway, with Baen able to sell their ebooks profitably for $5 or less each without killing print book sales, even of their hardcovers, there's no earthly reason an ebook should cost $10, let alone $18, apart from the dual evils of pricey DRM (do you know how much eReader charges for their ebook services? People I know who've checked on it say it's quite a lot) and publishers not wanting ebooks to "cannibalize" print sales.

Re:Mostly rubbish (1)

Breakfast Pants (323698) | more than 7 years ago | (#18136304)

"And even Steve Jobs doesn't like DRM any longer"

His claim is that he never did, and that they only used it because the record companies insisted. Funny, did the record companies insist that OSX require a serial number, or that it fail when it detects that it isn't being installed on Apple hardware?

Agreed (1)

Frozen Void (831218) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135974)

As counter-intuitive this sounds,DRM is actually achieving these goals in the end.
Cheaper alternatives always fare better in the long-term,when they have same or better quality.
Defeating DRM is valuable to every consumer.The companies designing the DRM think they can
protect something,that can be replicated for almost free(the Real cost of a copy,e.g. is the electricity spent copying to harddisk).

Baen Books has always gotten this: (2, Insightful)

seebs (15766) | more than 7 years ago | (#18135984)

http://www-128.ibm.com/developerworks/web/library/ us-cranky19.html [ibm.com]

Jim Baen kindly responded to my email asking him why they'd selected open standards and formats: "Because not only are our readers, in the main, not thieves, but because there is nothing there that is stealable." His point is an interesting one: there's not much point in stealing paperback books -- they are pretty cheap -- and you couldn't print out the text for less than it would cost to buy the book. The only people who could possibly be "stealing" are the ones who, for whatever reason, end up not wanting the books and they wouldn't have bought the books anyway.


Jim Baen died last summer, but Baen Books still gives away a huge number of books in completely unencrypted, un-DRM'd formats. I think I have bought well over $100 of their buyable e-books, because I can read them on anything I want, any time I want.

Re:Baen Books has always gotten this: (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18136106)

dude, you look like a dick smoking fag.

That's how it works for me (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18135998)

I use an iPod and iTunes. But I've only bought three tracks through iTunes. I frequntly hover my mouse over the "buy it now" button, but I can't stand the idea of feeling financially locked into iPods. If there's a better player for me in 10 years, I don't want to abandon my purchased music when I switch. So I don't really buy from iTunes.

I still buy CD's, and legally trade CD's through LaLa. But a lot of songs I like, I just like the song, and I'm not paying $8-12 for a CD to get one song. No way.

So sometimes I check a CD out of the Library and rip a track off of it (usually in Apple Lossless codec) or, if the Library doesn't have the CD, sometimes I still grab a track off peer to peer.

I'd feel a lot worse about it if the music industry weren't so set on making music inconvenient, or if the band were getting more than a couple of cents of the purchase price anyway.

Sure, lecture me about moral absolutes, and that a few cents is still "stealing," or whatever. Its the same quandary that's stopping a lot of people from buying more music: people don't want to buy a whole album for one track, and they also don't want to buy music that's restricted to playing on some subset of available music players. Despite a plethora of new technologies facilitating the production, distribution, and playing of music, the RIAA companies seem dead set against allowing any real convenience, while pretending that DRM is providing them any real protection. They use DRM now- what tracks aren't available on p2p networks?

So let me get this straight... (1, Interesting)

the_skywise (189793) | more than 7 years ago | (#18136016)

Stealing of Wii's can only occur under 3 conditions...

1> They are hard to find and thus valuable.
2> They are high priced, so there's a fair amount of money to be saved by stealing them.
3> It's much easier to steal them than it is to wait and purchase a new one.

Guess what, LOCKS ON DOORS create these conditions in the first place! Oh, if only we lived in a socialist utopia where everybody could just print what they want and then there would be no crime.

Facetious?

You bet. But he's rationalizing theft of property because it's...ultimately... too inconvenient. If Sony wants to throw away their lead by making their products uber-expensive, THAT'S THEIR RIGHT.

If Metallica wants to throw away their popularity by over DRM'ing their music and supporting draconian copy rights, THAT'S THEIR RIGHT.

What's next, it's not right for the grocery stores to demand money for food? So it's okay to steal from them? Because that's what this guy is saying; That it's ok to steal if you feel that you're being shortchanged.

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

spitzak (4019) | more than 7 years ago | (#18136100)

How do locks on doors cause it to be easier to steal rather than buy (the #3 condition you said is caused by them)?

DRM literally means it is easier to steal than to buy. You steal, you get a copy that you know will play and can be put on any machine. If you buy, you are stuck with the DRM and have to remove it, a significant amount of work that was already done by the guy that uploaded the free "stealable" copy. The stolen copy is actually much more valuable as it includes this work.

Bzzt. You are wrong.

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

tomstdenis (446163) | more than 7 years ago | (#18136214)

Your argument falls apart because #3 doesn't hold true.

Stealing a Wii is much harder than to copyright violate an artist by acquiring an mp3. One involves depriving someone of property, while they're not paying attention, the other involves a click of a mouse.

I could see if stealing a Wii could be done over Kazaa or Napster [or whatever kids run nowadays]. But it isn't.

Plus nobody is saying that copyright violations are justified. The author was saying that the reason copyright violations rise in the face of DRM is that acquiring non-licensed materials is so easy, and often results in HIGHER VALUE assets. In short, there is little to no incentive to buy DRM laden media.

That's miles away from saying there is no incentive to buy media. People would rather have control over their assets than the random smorgasborg that is P2P. I want to know that if I buy mp3s that they are from the source, not a rip of a rip of a rip, with a high quality encoder, using a known [preferably high] bitrate. And I'll pay to get that.

What I won't pay for are windows-only restricted media files that don't allow me to transfer them to other playing devices, or re-encode them to fit on smaller memory devices as the occasion requires.

Now, if you, the producer, only make restricted DRM media available and I really want your tracks, I'll probably just copy them instead of buying them. Is it "right?" No. But that's the reality of the situation. Now had they just tried to sell me high quality un-drm'ed MP3s they would have made a sale.

Tom

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

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18136252)

I think the guy is just listing *why* piracy happens and how DRM only encourages it. He isn't trying to say communist ideals or whatever propaganda you apparently believed it to be. It's moreso him saying what's going on rather than saying "well it costs money so I'm gonna steal it!".

Maybe he didn't get it all right, but he made a pretty damn good attempt and didn't go off ranting like a little fanboy.

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

KoldKompress (1034414) | more than 7 years ago | (#18136296)

How Many times...
Downloading pirated items is not Stealing! It's breaching a copyright. It is not depriving any party of their property. On top of that, your analogy is slightly off. DRM is not a lock on a door, it's a lock on your OWN door to make sure you don't go out and do bad stuff.

In precis (1)

Stephen Tennant (936097) | more than 7 years ago | (#18136034)

An excellent examination of the conditions leading to that phenomenon in modern electronic commerce, known colloquially as "fuck that."

Sigh.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18136040)

No shit, Sherlock! Tell me more; how did you end up to this conclusion?! I so admire your genius!

DRM Causes Piracy? I agree.... (1)

zakezuke (229119) | more than 7 years ago | (#18136068)

My local library lends DRM infested AV materials, which in it self is reasonable. However, I have a friend who rents material to use on his palm which from what I'm told doesn't support these files. The only viable solution, other than investing in another pocket device, is to copy the media, strip the DRM so he can actually use it. Whats funny is he's actually an honest joe who does delete the material after it's been used, so he's not actually pirating it, only violating the DMCA.

Someone else would likely be tempted to keep these non-DRM copies, which they have to make to play them.

Re: DRM Causes Piracy? I agree.... (1)

280Z28 (896335) | more than 7 years ago | (#18136254)

DRM forces me to pirate every DVD movie I watch, whether or not I paid for it. I use ffdshow [afterdawn.com] to handle volume normalization (so I can watch at 2AM, hear the talking, and not wake the neighbors when a bomb goes off) and brightness/contrast adjustments (my room isn't always at theater brightness levels). Apparently these features aren't useful for any legal purpose... at least that's what I gather from a system that only allows these A/V processors on pirated versions of the movie (works for nearly any format except DVD video).

But the record companies _want_ more piracy... (1)

Don'tTreadOnMe (686201) | more than 7 years ago | (#18136152)

I suspect that the record companies want more poiracy. Then they can get a blank CD/DVD/hard drive tax similar to the one in place on blank audio cassettes.

That's where the steady income lies, for them.

same as old adage (1)

icepick72 (834363) | more than 7 years ago | (#18136178)

[Guns don't kill people. I do.]

DRM doesn't cause piracy, lack of un DRM does (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18136238)

It isn't DRM that's causing piracy, DRM'd products are failing in the market place.
It's the SHORTAGE of NON-DRM'D outlets.

Customers have already voted with their wallets, the lower the DRM the higher the sales. So much so, the independants are a growing share of the market because they took the risk and the majors didn't.

Ridiculous... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18136264)

Eric Flint's argument applies to books, where the electronic form is much less useful than the paper version. It doesn't apply to music and video, where the electronic form is more useful than the CD/DVD form to most people.

2: The products they want are high-priced.... (2, Interesting)

russ1337 (938915) | more than 7 years ago | (#18136290)

Principle 2: "The products they want are high-priced, so there's a fair amount of money to be saved by stealing them"

I can attest to this 100% - in a different, but similar area many are familiar with. My example is my experience with WindowsXP. When I lived in New Zealand, I could not afford the NZD$536 [dse.co.nz] (USD$377) for XP home to keep my CS:S habit alive, so I used a 'less than legitimate' copy of XP. Anyway, when I moved to the US I thought I'd go legit only because after a visit to Frys i saw i could pick up XP off the shelf at (USD$199 [outpost.com] ) - almost half the price. Even better I managed to get an OEM XP home for just over a hundred bucks.

Now there's no way I'm paying NZ$536 (USD$377) for an OS. No way. No way in hell. However, I was happy enough to part with a hundy for the OEM version. I didnt know of Linux at the time (now have 3 PC's on Ubuntu), but wanted XP to play CS:S and various other Windows games I'd paid for over the years (because they were well priced!!!)

So yeah, hopefully big business will wake up and smell the coffee one of these days.

basic market economy (1)

denoir (960304) | more than 7 years ago | (#18136338)

It's puzzling to see that music label execs don't grasp the basic principles of market economy. Perhaps it is because their business has largely been a cartel based one.

The real world situation is that you can get an improved service (faster download) a better product (no DRM) for a lower cost (free). Since you can't get cheaper than free and the product can be cloned at no cost their only real two choices are an improved service (larger selection, properly tagged, faster download speed etc) or indirect product revenue via product placement etc

That is simply the reality that they have to accept - few people in their right mind will buy an inferior product at a higher price while getting a worse service. Law suits are pointless against such a force of nature.

No non-interactive media (books, music, movies etc) can be protected as its contents can be cloned at one level or another. Software and similar interactive stuff are a different story as you can run parts of it server-side. For the other stuff for DRM to work, it would require a vanishingly unlikely agreement (conspiracy if you will) by software and hardware manufacturers to eliminate software-based cloning. And even then, there's nothing that can prevent me from hooking up my digital line out to my digital line in, be it audio or video. That battle was lost even before it began.

Instead of using this new medium to provide a new set of services, the music industry have made piracy all it is today - generally a better alternative.

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