Microsoft Agrees To Put A Copyright Cop On The Zune
from the not-quite-how-you-grow-your-market-share dept
It's difficult to figure out which side is making the bigger mistake here, so we'll just say that both companies are working hard to drag each other down. First off, Microsoft. Apparently not having learned anything from recent DRM debacles, building a special copyright cop into the Zune software immediately makes the device that much less useful. Any such filter will be more of a nuisance than anything else. While it may temporarily cause annoyance to some users, those who really want to get content onto their Zunes will figure out other ways -- so this will only serve to piss them off. And, in many cases it will (yes, it will) stop the perfectly legitimate transfer of content to the Zune. So, it won't serve the purpose, but it will piss people off. Why would anyone buy into that plan?
As for NBC, remember, we're talking about TV shows here. TV shows that the company already distributes for free. You want as many people watching these shows as possible. Stop worrying about "piracy" and focus on making it as damn easy as possible for as many people to watch the shows as possible, and just include a few non-intrusive, non-annoying (but very entertaining) advertisements in there and everything will be great. Pissing off the very people you're trying to get to watch your (free!) TV shows doesn't seem like a strategy that's going to make many fans happy. They have plenty of other options on what to do with their time. Even worse, making sure that the only way that owners of iPods (the dominant player in the market) can see your shows is to get them from unauthorized sources (of which there are plenty) doesn't seem particularly smart.
These are rather simple things that should be obvious to anyone online at this point. That folks at Microsoft and NBC Universal seem to not realize them gives you a hint of what direction both companies are heading in with this effort. Update: Microsoft is denying the NY Times story. Update 2: Microsoft PR points us to Microsoft's blog statement denying the story as well. Reading between the lines, it sounds like NBC brought it up and Microsoft basically said "we'll think about it," but hasn't promised to do anything.