Mark Bult Design: San Francisco, CA, Established 1988

Web design and development for small and large business, e-commerce, b2b, b2c, SAAS, and community websites. User experience design and usability testing.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

DRM is designed to break campatibility

ZDNet's David Berlind wrote a lengthy article last week complaining that his $20,000 of audiophile equipment can't play the 99� songs he downloads because his system is undermined by Digital Rights Management (DRM) technology embedded in the audio formats.

The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF)'s John Gilmour promptly responded to point out that DRM is designed to break compatability. Gone are the days when you could pop a cassette into the stereo to record that cool new song off the radio, and pass it on to your friend the next day at school (okay, I'm showing my age here with this example, I know).

"It's really simple," wrote Gilmour. "DRM is *designed* to break compatibility. The whole point of DRM is *restrictions*. The point of all previous audio formats was compatability. CDs play on any CD player. Cassettes play or record on any cassette player. Neither one cares what you do with the audio that comes out. By contrast, DRM is designed to prevent the audio from coming out in any way that the oligopoly objects to..."

Ignore my somewhat dated example above and bear with me. DRM is a way to take back control from the consumer. A completely understandable objective from the corporations' standpoint. But if you're a consumer of music, video, books on CD, et al (and who isn't?), you are on the other side. Let me state it bluntly: It's us against Them�.

As Gilmour points out, it's up to consumers to revolt to turn back the tide. The EFF is a great place to start.

Filed under: activism, tech, media, music, movies


Blogger monocle_man said...

Does one really want to listen to 128 kbps (or worse) compressed music on a $20K system anyway?

And even if one does, in the purest form possible, just burn said track to a CD, reimport in a lossless, open format like FLAC, and voila, you can feed every bit from that original lossy file into your megabuck DAC.

Or just use an analaog line out. It's compressed audio fer crissake.

10/04/2005 08:27:00 PM

Blogger waterlovinguy117 said...

Buy a PC, install a SoundBlaster card and hit the "Record what I hear" button.

Long live vinyl records, the superior analog medium used to record music as it was meant to be heard. Not some shriveled up shit format from Cupertino, Redmond or any of the other low-quality ports of mass-trade that are sucking the life and pennies out of the fans.

10/04/2005 08:45:00 PM

Blogger espd said...

I'm so glad you guys are taking the title of this blog to heart.

10/05/2005 10:55:00 PM


Post a Comment

<< Home