Microsoft's Final 'Up Yours' To Those Who Bought Into Its DRM Story

from the playsforwhatnow? dept

Remember a few years back when Microsoft launched a new type of DRM under the name "PlaysForSure"? The idea was to create a standard DRM that a bunch of different online music download stores could use, and which makers of digital music devices could build for. Except... like any DRM, it had its problems. And, like any DRM, its real purpose was to take away features, not add them, making all of the content hindered by it less valuable. Yet, because Microsoft was behind it, many people assumed that at least Microsoft would keep supporting it. Well, you've now learned your lesson. Playsforsure was so bad that Microsoft didn't even use it for its own Zune digital media device. Along with that, Microsoft shut down its failed online music store, and now for the kicker, it's telling anyone who was suckered into buying that DRM'd content that it's about to nuke the DRM approval servers that let you transfer the music to new machines. That means you need to authorize any songs you have on whatever machine you want -- and that's the only place they'll be able to reside forever. And, of course, any upgrade to your operating system (say from XP to Vista) and you lose access to your music as well. By now, hopefully, everyone is aware of why DRM is problematic, but it's nice of Microsoft to give one final demonstration by basically taking away more rights for the music it sold people with the promise that Microsoft would keep the music available.

Filed Under: drm, playsforsure
Companies: microsoft


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  1. icon
    Steve R. (profile), 23 Apr 2008 @ 7:09am

    Re: Re: Ticking Time Bomb

    It's not about paying twice for the music.

    It's about paying something like $5 for the final version of Windows98SE or the final version of Age of Empires III. While I don't like the idea of paying "twice" I am attempting to propose a comprise that would make it less onerous for a company to supply a final disk.

    I have one old game where the website has been taken down and the company no longer provides the patches. Fortunately, I have the patches, but it still points to the need for any software/hardware company to make available a final version so that the consumer has the ability to use the product.

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