Never one to let a little bad PR slow them down, Sony has apparently applied for a patent in Japan that would lock copies of software and media to a particular playback unit -- spurring rumors that the PS3 wouldn't be able to play used, rented or borrowed games. While PlayStation honcho Ken Kutaragi said at the beginning of the year Sony's stance on copy protection had held up innovation at the company, it's likely the movie and music units don't agree. DRM like this might be Hollywood's wet dream -- locking a copy of a movie, say, to one DVD player and one DVD player only -- but we hope Sony's not stupid enough to let its entertainment units be the tail that wags the dog to such an extreme. It would kill not just the rental and used game businesses, but also would destroy the "hey, you should borrow this game, it's really great" marketing that helps out game sales. Moves like this or not supporting backwards compatibility would pretty much kill any console.
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