Monday, January 15, 2007

Why It's Not Called DPM - Digital Piracy Management

A quick post on this Monday holiday: A fantastic and succinct argument on why and how DRM has little to do with piracy from arstechnica:
In a nutshell: DRM's sole purpose is to maximize revenues by minimizing your rights and selling them back to you.
The article goes on to illustrate this point with real world examples. One topic it does not broach, however, is how to reform DRM (or, in a prefect world, dismantle it) when those in charge of the content are also in charge of our rights. Any thoughts?


esguerra said...

In a dramatic display of, well, drama, I would say that the people in charge of content are never in charge of our inalienable consumer right--to purchase or not to purchase. In every other respect, big entertainment holds the cards, but I believe that we are capable of positioining ourselves to the point where we don't even care what cards they are holding.

This may be obvious: In my eyes, reforming DRM seems to be a matter of profit. When a paradigm shift via technology or via business model allows companies to gain profit by going "on the offense," (growing customers instead of keeping customers from leaving) the industry will ease their focus on "defensive" mechanisms. They will necessarily spend all available resources on (a) adapting current models to the survive the new offensive scheme and (b) running the new offense better than the last guy to do it.

Somehow, I think that the "long tail" is ultimately the answer to all this copyright madness. When profit begins riding on the fact that a limitless system commands greater attention, and therefore more dollars, than one with limits (which we're already seeing with Google), then we'll really see defensive control schemes die.

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