Monday, February 26, 2007

DRM Causes Piracy

A couple days ago, Slash Dot linked to an article written by Eric Flint, editor at Baen Publishing, in which he attempts to lay out the case that DRM actually causes piracy instead of preventing it. Flint breaks it down in three distinct points:
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,' is DRM itself that keeps fueling it and driving it forward.