Friendly DRM Is An Oxymoron

from the nothing-friendly-about-it dept

While the era of DRM on music may finally be ending, it appears that some other industries still haven't quite come to terms with the three simple facts that a few industries are finally realizing: (1) DRM does not work (2) DRM diminishes the value of your product (3) DRM pisses off your users. Despite these universal truths, every digital industry seems to go through this phase where they think that they can figure out how to do DRM right. A bunch of consumer electronics makers and movie studios are apparently working together on yet another DRM standard that they swear (this time, for real!!) will actually work and will be "friendly." We've heard it before, and the end result is the same (see numbers 1 through 3 above). As per usual, they're claiming that this system will be even better than non-DRM'd content, but fail to explain how that's actually true. At best, they say it'll be more convenient, but it's difficult to see how any limitation adds convenience rather than takes it away.

Filed Under: drm, friendly drm, movies


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  1. icon
    chris (profile), 13 Jan 2009 @ 3:55pm

    Re: Steam?

    the value Steam adds seems to far outweigh the minor DRM they have (a check in for the first time you play a game/install)

    ever tried to play a steam game right after you install it?

    ever had steam crash and decide it needs to download all of it's updates at 21kb/sec?

    ever had to re-install steam and had it need to re-validate all 12 of your games?

    in every case you will be locked out of your games until steam deems you worthy.

    steam is also perpetually out of date. i got left4dead 5 days after release and ended up locked out of it for most of a day while it and steam updated. how can a game be out of date 5 days after release?

    steam is the best implementation of game DRM in history of DRM and it still sucks ass. as long as there is chance that a user can get locked out of or otherwise denied access to media/applications that were legitimately purchased, then you are pissing off your users (3) adding value to pirated versions (2), end of story.

    also, left4dead had already been cracked and is on the public trackers, so clearly even steams DRM doesn't work (1).

    if valve can't get it right, i am fairly confident that no one can.

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