Copy protection and DRM aren't wonder toys. What protection -- if any -- they provide content suppliers comes at a pretty significant cost. A Yahoo exec ruffled some feathers when he said the company would be better off selling music without copy protection, and several people in the industry are wondering if copy protection is really worthwhile, noting that it's probably not stopped any piracy, but has also hindered sales. While it's easy to reject copy protection out of hand on ideological grounds, it's also hard to make a good business case for it. You're making your content less valuable, and limiting the audience to which it can be sold. The industry needs to figure these things out, and quickly, or a solution will probably be foisted on them. Consumer groups in Norway and the UK have lodged complaints about iTunes, the iPod and its DRM, and the French copyright law that's being discussed could force proprietary DRM systems to open up so consumers could listen to their music on any device they want.
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