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Re: GPL & Anti-DRM Clause

From: Gordon Burditt
Subject: Re: GPL & Anti-DRM Clause
Date: Sun, 12 Feb 2006 22:23:04 -0000

>> > > Since Digital Restrictions Management doesn't affect only generic
>> > > computers but also the access to works (which can be revoked), I disagree
>> > > and maintain my generic view that DRM is theft.
>> > 
>> > DRM backed up by law is abusive, but DRM alone is a private matter.
>> The law only protect circunvention. But suppose circunvention wasn't
>> technically feasible...
>> Regardless of law, DRM is theft. If there sould be a law, it should
>> forbid DRM.
>DRM without laws against circumvention is just ordinary free market 

Another way of saying that is "ordinary free market marketing scams".

>Just because the law allows you to make copies doesn't mean 
>that the publisher has to make it *easy* for you to do so.  Without the 
>law behind it, it's like physical publishing on copier-resistant paper.

Is there any way to design DRM so that it CANNOT LIE about the
rights you have?  For example, some company sells songs limited to
either 100 plays or 2000 plays, and charges more for second.  How
do you know which one you've got?  You may not realize you got the
wrong one until long after you've lost your receipt.  And if you're
buying it used on Ebay, how do you know how many plays are left?
Oh, yes, it also can't say you have "57 plays left" if it really
means "57 plays or the bankruptcy of the publisher, whichever comes

>Some publishers may find it more advantageous to implement copy 
>prevention, others may charge a bit more but allow copying.

And it should be illegal to misrepresent the first case as the second.
The copy protection and the nature of it needs to be disclosed before
the sale.  That doesn't mean telling how to defeat it, but terms
like "limited to 100 plays" and "limited to 100 plays ALL ON THE
SAME COMPUTER" are very different and the consumer should know
what he's buying.

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