Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Music Media

Yahoo Music Chief Comes Out Against DRM 304

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the getting-on-the-bandwagon dept.
waired writes "It seem that a trend has begun in the music industry after Steve Jobs essay. Now a senior Yahoo chief has spoken out in favor of Apple CEO Steve Jobs' call for major labels to abandon digital rights technology (DRM). It points out that consumers are getting confused and that the Microsoft DRM "doesn't work half the time"."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Yahoo Music Chief Comes Out Against DRM

Comments Filter:
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 14, 2007 @10:33AM (#18011240)
    Monkey see, Monkey Do
  • As predicted (Score:5, Insightful)

    by geekoid (135745) <dadinportland AT yahoo DOT com> on Wednesday February 14, 2007 @11:02AM (#18011564) Homepage Journal
    nce one major corp came out gainst DRM other would begin to speak up as well.

    These people are not dumb, and slashdotter's aren't the only ones that understand the folly of DRM.
    • Re:As predicted (Score:4, Interesting)

      by SaDan (81097) on Wednesday February 14, 2007 @11:06AM (#18011606) Homepage
      Anyone could have predicted that Yahoo would back up statements by Jobs concerning DRM. Yahoo, after all, is partnering with Apple to provide some of the IMAP "push" functionality with the new iPhones.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      I agree that Apple coming out against DRM could prove to be the tipping point, but I'm pretty sure that Yahoo (among other companies) had already made some moves towards this before Jobs gave his views. But, once again, Apple will be seen as the original free-thinking innovators that everyone else follows.

      Anyway, I'm not arguing with you, just bitching in general.
    • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 14, 2007 @11:13AM (#18011708)
      What bothers me the most is that we had to wait until these corporate executives spoke out. What we needed, at least in the United States, was every Jill and Joe American speaking out against having their rights "managed".

      The very idea of "managed rights" flies in the face of the Constitution, the ideals of the Founding Fathers, and what it truly means to be American. It's difficult to say for sure why most people didn't take a far more active stance against DRM. The first reason is no doubt because it'd take effort to do effectively, and most Americans would rather watch the NFL or American Idol instead. The second reason is perhaps because they just don't give a fuck, and that's quite dangerous a stance to be taking.

      Regardless, the American people as a whole should have stood up and said NO! to any sort of "rights management" system. DRM is just plain un-American.

      • by Xonstantine (947614) on Wednesday February 14, 2007 @11:47AM (#18012168)
        The very idea of "managed rights" flies in the face of the Constitution, the ideals of the Founding Fathers, and what it truly means to be American

        I don't think those things mean what you think they mean. "Digital rights management" != inaliable rights as laid down by the U.S. Constitution and liberal political theory. Lets be clear here, the two have absolutely NOTHING to do with each other. Digital rights management is essentially a technology mechanism to enforce (or hinder the breaking of) contract law. The only thing it flies in the face of is consumer convenience. DRM certainly annoys me as a consumer, but I think things like no-knock warrants, the drug war, idefinite detention without trial, and asset forfeiture laws fly in the face of the Constitution, the ideals of the Founding Fathers just a tad more.
        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by 0123456 (636235)
          "Digital rights management is essentially a technology mechanism to enforce (or hinder the breaking of) contract law."

          But there's no legally-binding contract between buyer and seller when I buy an HD DVD and the DRM is enforced by law through the DMCA. In addition, DRM is a blatant violation of the intention of copyright, which was merely to support the creator before the material entered the public domain... material with effective DRM will _NEVER_ enter the public domain.
        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by mstone (8523)
          Minor correction: DRM is a technological means to enforce license law, not contract law.

          The confusion between those two branches of law creates an unnecessary amount of meaningless noise here on /. Way too many people think that, "I never signed anything," is a vaild refutation of EULAs, music and video license restrictions, or any other rule that gets in the way of their 'I paid for it so I should be able to do whatever I want' mindset.

          The irony, of course, is that 'GPL violation' would be completely mea
          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            by Belial6 (794905)
            There is no irony in the GPL being meaningless without copyright. The GPL is a "If 'The Man' is going to enforce the very bad idea of copyright and software licensing, then they we will use that enforcement against itself to keep people free. If 'The Man' gives up on these very bad ideas, then the GPL will no longer be necessary." kind of document.

            It is a little like the US Constitution. If there were no one who would ever want to keep us from exercising our inalienable rights, the Constitution would
          • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

            by Dog-Cow (21281)
            "The irony, of course, is that 'GPL violation' would be completely meaningless if that were true."

            This is not the case. A GPL violation is a copyright violation. The genius of the GPL is that it uses both license and copyright law to force developers to give up their usual rights under copyright law. If license law is suddenly struck down, no one can use GPL code because they no longer have a right to do so, because of copyright law. If copyright law is struck down, one does not need the GPL to legally
            • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

              by mstone (8523)
              Actually, it's both.

              Copyright law gives a creator the right to license a work. License law gives the creator power to write a set of rules that say how other people are allowed to use the work.

              Using the work in a way that isn't allowed by the license is first a violation of the license, and second a violation of the creator's rights as established by copyright law.

              The two tend to get rolled together in conversation, though.
        • by Ed Avis (5917)
          I don't think copyright is contract law. Copyright violation is a tort, not a breach of contract, and the scope of copyright is limited (for example it expires after a certain number of years, and some fair dealing rights are inalienable). Of course the publishers would prefer it to be a contract, but wishes aren't the same thing as law.
        • by 93 Escort Wagon (326346) on Wednesday February 14, 2007 @12:23PM (#18012690)
          "The only thing it flies in the face of is consumer convenience."

          I agree with much of your post, but this is incorrect. "Fair use" is a well-established legal principle, not just a Slashdot mantra. While not its primary goal, DRM does its best to contradict our established rights by preventing even fair use of legally purchased material.
      • Do you think the people have a clue what is going on.

        The vast majority of people are likely to think as far as "I like free music", or "they need to be paid", and that is it.
      • by Orange Crush (934731) on Wednesday February 14, 2007 @11:56AM (#18012294)

        DRM is just plain un-American.

        What really upsets me is DRMed hardware. DRMed media is bad enough, but I can choose not to purchase it. At the rate things are going, soon we'll only be able to purchase locked-down hardware that's both more expensive due to DRM and less flexible. A bought and paid for tangible device that restricts what I can do according to arbitrary rules devised by companies that treat their customers like thieves is unacceptable to me.

      • by jbn-o (555068) <mail@digitalcitizen.info> on Wednesday February 14, 2007 @12:52PM (#18013172) Homepage
        Everyday Americans have been speaking out. I'm such an American and I haven't been waiting for executives to speak on the issue. I've been speaking out to anyone who would listen/read on my local community radio station (I had a show for a few years until the station became remarkably undemocratic), on my blog (which I maintain to this day), to Jack Valenti's face in front of an audience (when he came to my town on his anti-"piracy" tour) and related letters to the editor, and with my friends while we discuss media matters (virtually weekly at a local bar).

        Americans use a lot of non-free operating systems and software (which digital restrictions require), but if you take the time to teach them to value their freedom they'll listen and learn. On my radio program, I found it interesting to take a wide angle—people found it interesting to discuss how copyright and patent issues intersect with their everyday lives.

        It's critical to not give up the freedom talk and not give into the people who would have you compromise your values in order to placate proprietors. There is a deep thirst for substantive talk and action about issues that matter.
      • Just what does this story have to do with Americans, as such? Are you guys the only ones who consume digital music in the world? And are you including Canadians, Brazilians & Mexicans in your tub-thumping 'American' grouping?
      • Yeah but the problem is, every Jill and Joe American as you put it, is of no importance or value in our country anymore. They are consumers. They are not people worth listening to, or allowing to voice their opinions. They have no influence what so ever.

        But Steve Jobs... Now there is an important human being of god like status. He has lots and lots of money and he's successful, so when he talks.. people listen.

        When Jill and Joe American, talk... no one thinks their of any importance because what have they a
      • What bothers me the most is that we had to wait until these corporate executives spoke out. What we needed, at least in the United States, was every Jill and Joe American speaking out against having their rights "managed".

        I think most people outside the tech world don't care that much about DRM and don't even know what it is. They rip their music from CDs, and iTunes DRM is so liberal that they don't know music from the iTunes Store is protected. Honestly, DRM isn't as big a deal as people around here mak

    • For the record (pardon the bad pun), David Goldberg from Y! Music was asking the labels for No DRM, Please [ymusicblog.com] last year (February 2006.) It's good to see more executive types speaking out about the idea, in my opinion.
  • jobs against drm? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by TinBromide (921574)
    So, when is itunes going to be drm free? With all of jobs' crusading against drm, you'd think he would start within his own company.
    • by Constantine XVI (880691) <trash.eighty+slashdotNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Wednesday February 14, 2007 @11:06AM (#18011608)
      As soon as the labels will let him sell without DRM.
      • by aussie_a (778472)
        And whose forcing Jobs to put his DRM in the Mac OS X?
        • Pirates who want to breach the OSX EULA and run OSX on non-Apple hardware. That's the only real DRM contained within OSX to my knowledge (You can safely remove iTunes, and plenty of other apps as well). As much as we hate their decision, it is part of their license. Breaching it to them would be no different to MS shoving the Linux kernel into WinVi without abiding by the GPL. It just happens that since Jobs produces the hardware, he can put things in it (the TPM) to check with the software (OSX on AAPL
          • by aussie_a (778472)
            Wow. So you could say that pirates are forcing Jobs to put DRM into iTunes :rolleyes:
            • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

              by Trillan (597339)
              With Mac OS X, Apple has a unique form of copyright protection: One that gets in the way of absolutely no legitimate users. And no, it doesn't use the TPM. The TPM isn't even on recent models.
          • Ok, Jobs saying no DRM in iTunes is a good thing, but DRM in OSX is a bad thing?

            Read what you said:

            "Pirates who want to breach the OSX EULA and run OSX on non-Apple hardware. That's the only real DRM contained within OSX to my knowledge (You can safely remove iTunes, and plenty of other apps as well). As much as we hate their decision, it is part of their license."

            Well, if music has no DRM then it will have a license agreement as well. That means that it is up to the consumer to respect the EULA. So why can
            • by no reason to be here (218628) on Wednesday February 14, 2007 @01:55PM (#18014030) Homepage
              Oh yeah I forgot, Jobs wants to make sure that he can sell overpriced hardware!

              This is just not true--at least not anymore. The price of any Apple Computer is completely in line with an equivalently equipped Dell, Gateway, etc. Sometimes, the price of the "PC" is even higher. True, Apple does not have a computer that competes with a $300-something dollar Dell price-wise; however, Dell's computers that do compete with Apple's computers feature wise are often more expensive than the Mac offering. Sometime ago, Apple sold hardware that could reasonably be called overpriced. Now it's just a troll to say so.

              The rest of your argument is fallacious as well. Apple does not force consumers to buy a new Mac to run a new version of OS X. The most recent version of OS X runs just fine on Macs that are 5+ years old. Conversely, the RIAA want you to re-buy all of your music every 5-10 years when it becomes available in a different format. What Apple does is not even comparable.
          • If Jobs is for openess he can open what is Apple's.

            Removing DRM and allowing free copying of the OS (as Sun has done with Solaris) is the best recipe to get rid of the Pirates.

            The only thing Apple would need to do is to say that there is no support for people without proof of purchase.
        • If you live in a universe where there is only one widely known operating system, then you have an expectation that everything else will work the same way and zero tolerance for anything different. Switch operating systems suddenly and, after any initial "wow factor" the next response will always be frustration and disorientation.

          Now, if you've just dropped $2000 for a new Mac, you have a pretty strong incentive (plus a dose of new-computer-smell intoxication) to get over that hump.

          If, however, Joe User ha

      • Re:jobs against drm? (Score:5, Interesting)

        by bogjobber (880402) on Wednesday February 14, 2007 @11:32AM (#18011986)
        Most of the indie labels (approx. 30% of sales) already do want their music sold without DRM.
        • Re:jobs against drm? (Score:4, Informative)

          by ObligatoryUserName (126027) on Wednesday February 14, 2007 @12:53PM (#18013188) Journal
          Jobs has said that doing a mixed store with some DRM and some non-DRM isn't something he's interested in doing.

          It would be similar to the Zune where you can squirt some songs, but not others. Confusing.
          • Re:jobs against drm? (Score:5, Interesting)

            by TheRaven64 (641858) on Wednesday February 14, 2007 @01:06PM (#18013368) Journal

            I don't really see this. Put a big 'UNENCUMBERED' notice next to all the DRM-free songs. Start giving priority to DRM-free music on the front page of the store. Only recommend DRM-free music. Pretty soon, all of the other labels are going to want to re-negotiate their contracts to allow DRM-free distribution.

            • I don't really see this. Put a big 'UNENCUMBERED' notice next to all the DRM-free songs. Start giving priority to DRM-free music on the front page of the store. Only recommend DRM-free music. Pretty soon, all of the other labels are going to want to re-negotiate their contracts to allow DRM-free distribution.

              All that is way confusing for the user - remember that one of the reasons ITMS has been as popular as it has is that the rules are clear, and the same across everything you buy from the store. What you
        • How many of the labels or artists requesting this have direct, pre-existing contracts with iTunes?

          Do the artists that have supposedly asked Apple to remove DRM from their tracks have any current legal standing to do so? (I.e., is their arrangement with CDbaby, which itself has the contract with Apple?)

          Might one or more of the major label contracts currently in force with Apple require that all music sold on the same store have the same controls?

          How much work would Apple have to do to begin providing differe
          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            by bogjobber (880402)

            How much work would Apple have to do to begin providing different protection levels via iTunes? (Hint: it's not "2-3 days" work, as someone suggested in a previous submission on this topic to slashdot. Anyone who thinks it is is seriously deluding themselves in terms of how much work is required to make reliable and consistent changes to such a large service.)

            They already store unprotected files on the server that are accessible from certain clients [wikipedia.org]. I'm sure they probably thought of the eventuality th

    • by trongey (21550)

      So, when is itunes going to be drm free? With all of jobs' crusading against drm, you'd think he would start within his own company.

      More to the point; is Disney going to be DRM-free? I understand he's on the other side of the fence at that company.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by jonwil (467024)
      The best place to start would be to allow those labels who want to sell their music on the iTunes store without the DRM attached. That way, all the music coming from those labels (RIAA etc) who insist on DRM, will still get their DRM but other music would be DRM free. It could be done with absolutely no visible difference to the user.

      If Jobs was serious about his anti-DRM stance, he would either allow DRM free music on the iTunes store or he would come out with a clear statement as to why he cant allow it
      • .... that the big lables will not play that game? I'll do it again, in case the previous 1000 have not been enough.

        They will sell only on fully DRM crippled shops.

        They are not stupid, they use their cartel power in order to ensure a product with a clear competitive advantage does not share any "shelf" space with their wares.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 14, 2007 @11:05AM (#18011600)
    wow... that's about 25% better than I had expected.
  • It's the end of the world as we know it! Yeeeeeah yeah yeah...something like that. It was only a matter of time. If it takes Steve Jobs to kick start an industry wide backlash against DRM, then so be it.
    • by itsdapead (734413) on Wednesday February 14, 2007 @11:19AM (#18011788)

      Hey! I just upgraded to Slashdot Vasta "Bedroom Premium" edition and your post came out:

      It's (premium content blocked) something like that. It was only a matter of time. If it takes Steve Jobs to kick start an industry wide backlash against DRM, then (premium content blocked).

      (The second one was a false positive for "Let it be")

  • The Yahoo chief's thoughts were echoed by SanDisk founder and CEO Eli Harari, who wrote: "Proprietary systems arent acceptable to consumers. In recent months, there has been a rising chorus of complaints in Europe about the anti-competitive nature of closed formats that tie music purchased from one company to that companys devices, and tie that companys devices to its music service."
  • by postbigbang (761081) on Wednesday February 14, 2007 @11:19AM (#18011784)
    They're like telcos: you can only hurt the RIAA/music licensors in one of three very basic ways:

    1) legislation/lawsuit (unlikely as they own the legislatures and have armies of lawyers)
    2) have a massive clientele defection (unlikely because they're a monopoly like the telcos) or
    3) have their talent pool stop making revenue (crappy quality music, and so on-- also highly unlikely).

    Bottom line: he's sucking up to his clientele (us, supposedly) and Wall Street, especially Wall Street who wants to pound the crap out of them for other foollish moves. They should have demanded that Mark Cuban stay with them for a few years after they bought his Broadcast.Com.

    It's all PR. Nothing to see here.
    • by Technician (215283) on Wednesday February 14, 2007 @11:40AM (#18012086)
      3) have their talent pool stop making revenue (crappy quality music, and so on-- also highly unlikely).

      Don't rule this one out.. Some talent is going inde. Some consumers are moving outside the Clear Chanel CD advertising route. Talent now gets exposure on youtube, Google Videos, etc. They put their products on CD Baby and emusic. You get higher quality (192Kbs VBR compared to 128Kbs fixed) with no DRM and lower prices. This trend is growing. Given time it will gain critical mass. It is legal and the RIAA and their team of lawyers are powerless to sotp it. They will have to adopt or die.

      Arvil Lavine and Bare Naked Ladies have already moved. I think some of the newest TSO releases are now on inde labels. The RIAA can only screw the talent and consumers so much before they both seek an alternative.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by postbigbang (761081)
        It's like when Ticketmaster had the Pearl Jam rebellion. Who one that? Ticketmaster. Yes, you can go outside the 'system', but it's not easy and while there are successful financial models to pattern from, it's extraordinarily difficult.

        Revenues come from licensing (merchandise), concerts (lots of high-margin revenue), as well as the song marketing themselves. The lyrics and sheet music, coupled with just about everything associated with a 'brand' is revenue production. The RIAA isn't about to let a heavy p
  • How politic of him (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Bullfish (858648) on Wednesday February 14, 2007 @11:24AM (#18011872)
    It's all fine and well for both Jobs and this guy to come out and say cast down the DRM, but it really is just pandering to the masses. If a deal to drop DRM is ever to be worked out, it will be through backroom deals, not in the tech press. I think we all know DRM doesn't work well and is a pain, but it is not up to these delivery vehicles (iTunes et al) to drop the DRM. It is a condition under which they are allowed to sell the licensed product. No DRM, no product to sell. It's that simple.

    A lot of this is just saying, "it's them, not us". Fine for geek politics, but it probably is not going to make a pig's fart of difference to the RIAA/MPAA cabal.

    I want DRM to go away to, but it isn't going to happen through these feel-good speeches. It's going to happen through things like the recent EMI announcement (which frankly only applies to a chunk of their catalog that isn't selling anyway).
    • by Phat_Tony (661117) on Wednesday February 14, 2007 @12:20PM (#18012640)
      The surest way to be sure DRM never goes away is for there to be no pressure to make it go away. Before, very few people knew what it was, or were mad about it, and of them, many (most?) blamed it on Apple and Microsoft, not the recording companies. Putting public pressure on them and making people aware of the issues and the origins of the problems is the only thing that will ever give them the impetus to strike these backroom deals you're talking about.

      The day after Jobs' Blog Post, the Wall Street Journal had two front page stories above the crease about it. That introduced this issue to probably a hundred thousand people who weren't previously aware of it, and they're overwhelmingly the important, moneyed, influential movers and shakers who it's most important to make aware of it. I was visiting my mother the next weekend, and that WSJ was lying around, and she asked me what it was all about. It was the first she'd heard of any of it. She only had a rudimentary idea of what a Media Player is. I'd tried to tell her about DRM before, but she never listened. Now she knows.

      Jobs' Blog Post may be the event that precipitates an interest in this issue that will eventually lead to change. The backroom deals are the conclusion of the change process, not the origin. You're right that won't happen in "the tech press," but for the first time I've seen, this story was just blown a mile outside the tech press.
    • by mgblst (80109)
      I think you are oversimplifying the situation. No doubt people have tried to do deals and get music without DRM, but at this point, the big Music Companies are too worried to do this. All this talk from Jobs and Yahoo is to try to get some sort of public reaction, which they can then use to make some deals (hopefully). It might not cost you anything to run around saying how much you dislike DRM, but for 2 big companies, such as Apple and Yahoo to do it, it means something.

      SO you are completely wrong, it is
      • by Bullfish (858648)
        These guys are just pandering. It is right that the masses buy the stuff and without them, the companies are screwed. All true. However all the publicity about suing dead grandmothers, the rootkit fiasco etc hasn't got the public coming with torches to the RIAA/MPAA offices either... Bad news... boycotts have a poor record of working.

        However... the only way (if ever) DRM is going to be dropped is if they associations are offered big piles of money among other things. Guess what, neither Apple nor Yahoo is g
    • by drinkypoo (153816)

      It's all fine and well for both Jobs and this guy to come out and say cast down the DRM, but it really is just pandering to the masses.

      Yeah, who cares about those damned masses anyway? They're just the ones that spend the money on the products and make the financial world go around. Fuck 'em.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      If a deal to drop DRM is ever to be worked out, it will be through backroom deals, not in the tech press.

      I disagree. If a deal to drop DRM is ever worked out it will be because the governments of the world stepped in and passed laws when they realized they could portray media companies as evil and greedy and get votes by mandating that DRM goes away.

      I think we all know DRM doesn't work well and is a pain...

      You're mistaken. DRM works very well and is a pain because the purpose of DRM is not to stop co

  • by Catbeller (118204) on Wednesday February 14, 2007 @11:26AM (#18011892) Homepage
    Jobs finally decloaked, and stood up against the RIAA. Now Yahoo. And all I see is... people... calling them names.

    Apparently nothing can satisfy you? Are you all just terminally apolitical? The enemy of the enemy is our friend. Back them the hell up.
  • by jc42 (318812) on Wednesday February 14, 2007 @11:28AM (#18011920) Homepage Journal
    [TFA] points out that consumers are getting confused and that the Microsoft DRM "doesn't work half the time".

    So Microsoft's standard approach of writing software that confuses users and doesn't work very well is telling the public that this is what all DRM is like. We see this all the time, for example with viruses which are invariably reported as infecting "computers", not just "Microsoft computers". Similarly, the difficulty of learning to use the little beasts is a property of "computers", not of any particular brand.

    It reminds me of the old saying: "Nobody is all bad. They can always serve as a bad example."

    In this case, though, MS could well be doing us a service. By convincing the gullible public that "DRM is confusing and doesn't work very well", they are inadvertently helping in the fight against DRM everywhere. Even if someone will come up with DRM that works (for some value of "works"), it won't be used, because it won't run on Windows (and on non-MS systems, the crypto geeks will break it within hours of release). Most users will just accept that MS's DRM is what DRM is like, and will oppose its use anywhere as a result.

    Of course, one could argue that a correct implementation of DRM is probably intractable. This is mostly because determining which "fair use" rules apply wherever the use might live is a seriously difficult AI problem. It can't actually be determined by a human-level intelligence, as demonstrated by the need to ask the courts rather than just reading the law books. So we need an AI that's much more intelligent than any team of human lawyers, and has deep understanding of all the "IP" laws of every jurisdiction in the world. Of multiple jurisdictions, actually, when Net transactions are considered. We won't likely see this level of AI in our lifetimes.

    Discuss amongst yourselves ...
  • The obvious (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Technician (215283) on Wednesday February 14, 2007 @11:28AM (#18011928)
    In the article it is stated the DRM free MP3 tracks sell faster.

    In a well duh moment, they figured out the installed base of equipment that can play MP3's is just about everyting. A MS or Apple format locks out all other format players. People don't buy incompatible formats. DRM in any format is incompatible with the majority of media players out there. Before you jump on the iTunes bandwagon... Do you have a DVD player? Do you use Linux? Do you have a MP3 player? Do you have a CD player that can play MP3 CD's in your car or as a portable CD player? iPods are everywhere, but not nearly as everywhere as MP3 players.

    Selling MP3's is a much bigger market than selling something that will play on a Windows PC and Plays for Sure devices or just iTunes on Apple and PC platforms and iPods, or worse yet Zunes.
    • by Rogerborg (306625) on Wednesday February 14, 2007 @11:47AM (#18012166) Homepage
      I wonder if "mp3" includes "wma without any 'DRM' crap". I ask because I rip/convert to wma now, as every device that I own can play it, and it's half the size of mp3 for the same quality. Does that make me an OMG TOOL OF SATAN? Would you choose to buy an mp3 or ogg format track over a smaller wma one (sans 'DRM') for the same price?
      • by pipatron (966506)
        I'd prefer the four times larger FLAC. No loss of quality, no closed-source, patent-ridden codec.
      • by drinkypoo (153816)

        I wonder if "mp3" includes "wma without any 'DRM' crap". I ask because I rip/convert to wma now, as every device that I own can play it, and it's half the size of mp3 for the same quality.

        I have devices that can't play wma. Well, one. Er, two. So yes, I would rather have mp3.

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by Anonymous Coward
        You don't need to worry about any of this, since you think WMA sounds fine. It's not the same quality, especially if it's coming out at half the file size, but if you can't tell the difference, don't worry about it.

        Enjoy your WMA. Just don't share it with anyone, nobody else prefers WMA. Everyone else thinks it sounds like shit, even at high bit rates.
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by Hatta (162192)
        Would you choose to buy an mp3 or ogg format track over a smaller wma one (sans 'DRM') for the same price?

        I would. What happens if microsoft shifts gears and won't license WMA players anymore? Are there patent issues that could endanger free software players? There are too many unknowns to justify settling on a proprietary compression format.
  • Film at 11 (Score:2, Funny)

    by navygeek (1044768)
    "...and that the Microsoft DRM "doesn't work half the time" "

    In other new, the Earth is round and the Sun is really far away.
    • by nanojath (265940)
      This is big news! DRM works half the time?! I'd like to see a list of the 50% of digital commodities that are not available on P2P networks because they have been protected by DRM. Oh, that's right... it only has to be cracked once.

      Although it is particularly dumb in the case of music where in most cases unprotected CDs are available (because CD DRM has been such a trainwreck) so that anybody who owns the CD can produce an unprotected MP3, yet you're not allowed to buy one.

      I bet Macrovision and its ilk a
  • by codepunk (167897) on Wednesday February 14, 2007 @12:19PM (#18012624)
    Microsoft DRM does not work 100% of the time on any of my linux boxes.
  • by calstraycat (320736) on Wednesday February 14, 2007 @12:58PM (#18013260)
    ...the Slashdot crowd?

    Over the last five years, not a week has gone by that there hasn't been an anti-DRM screed posted to this forum. Yet, when finally some industry leaders come out publicly against DRM, the mostly highly modded posts are those claiming it's nothing but a cynical ploy.

    You know, I'm just as cynical as the next guy when it comes to proclamations from the CEOs of giant multinational corporations. But, sometimes a cigar is just a cigar. Sometimes a statement isn't some carefully crafted strategic move based on hidden motives. DRM is a big pain in the butt to online music distributers and equipment manufacturers. The leaders of these industries are now making public statements on this matter. That's a good thing. If you are reading more into it than that, you've got too much time on your hands.
  • ...about making many many copies of my Mac OS X Leopard OS update DVD!

UNIX was half a billion (500000000) seconds old on Tue Nov 5 00:53:20 1985 GMT (measuring since the time(2) epoch). -- Andy Tannenbaum

Working...