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UK Music Retailers Beg, Drop the DRM 219

Posted by kdawson
from the free-as-in-no-chains dept.
thefickler notes that consumers aren't the only ones carrying "Death to DRM" placards. UK music retailers are telling the recording industry enough is enough — that the industry's obsession with copy protection is hurting, not helping, profit. Kim Bayley, director-general of the UK Entertainment Retailers Association, said that the anti-piracy technologies are not protecting industry revenue but instead "stifling growth and working against the consumer interest." The ERA hopes the industry will drop DRM in time for the holiday season. Good luck with that.
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UK Music Retailers Beg, Drop the DRM

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  • Good luck indeed (Score:3, Informative)

    by Panitz (1102427) on Thursday November 22, 2007 @09:50AM (#21445657)
    Does the holiday season not start today? If so, I cant see it being dropped, erm... yesterday. Or am I wrong?
    • Not in the UK (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Chrisq (894406) on Thursday November 22, 2007 @09:56AM (#21445689)
      We don't have thanksgiving, this refers to Christmas. I am sure most of the DVDs, etc. expected to sell at Christmas are already produced so it is still an impossible target.
      • Re:Not in the UK (Score:5, Insightful)

        by 91degrees (207121) on Thursday November 22, 2007 @10:19AM (#21445801) Journal
        Few people really care about DRM on DVDs. All DVD players will play the things. It's easily circumvented. It's more or less invisible to most people. DVD recorders are still quite rare amongst non-techies.

        I think they're mostly talking about DRM for downloads. This is more of a problem. People expect their music to be portable, and don't want any complexity or compatibility problems transferring music to their mp3 players.
        • The fact that CSS is broken is the reason they started screwing with the disc itself, and the VOB format, giving it bad cells etc.

          This is just as bad, and in fact worse, because now DVDs DON'T play in every DVD player.
        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by JohnBailey (1092697)

          Few people really care about DRM on DVDs. All DVD players will play the things. It's easily circumvented. It's more or less invisible to most people. DVD recorders are still quite rare amongst non-techies.

          True.. although quite a few have heard about the extra helpings of DRM on HD disks. They haven't caught on yet, and I suspect that the DRM requirements and licensing deals have some bearing on the price.

          I think they're mostly talking about DRM for downloads. This is more of a problem. People expect their music to be portable, and don't want any complexity or compatibility problems transferring music to their mp3 players.

          Very true. Even the iTunes users seem to be coming to the realization that a light DRM is still DRM. EMI was the first one to blink, and now the others stand a good chance of looking for a face saving route to DRM free sales.
          Surprisingly enough, its not just us techies that notice this and dislike it. Ordi

        • Re:Not in the UK (Score:5, Insightful)

          by delt0r (999393) on Thursday November 22, 2007 @12:59PM (#21446867)
          I just brought a disk that won't play on my DVD player. The other day we got one from the library with a warning not to play it on a computer because it will install a virus (No it wasn't sony). I find it particularly ironic with movies, since I almost never pay more than 10 Euros for a movie and mostly pay less than 5 Euro (less than a movie ticket). Why would i want a DVD shrink copy with all that effort of downloading when i can buy them for that. In other words, movies are cheap enough that buying from the shop is more convenient *until* they break compatibility like this.
          • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

            by h4rm0ny (722443)

            I've bought a few discs that I've had trouble playing. A couple of them I just took straight back to the shop for a refund, but the others I was able to get working after some irritating fiddling around. Playback from the discs either failed or had impossibly juddering sound. My copy program (K9copy) wouldn't rip either disc properly from one DVD drive but succeeded with my older drive so I was able to watch my DVD's directly from an iso file. All of the DVDs were from Optimum Releasing, so they lost out o
        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          Few people really care about DRM on DVDs.

          It depends what you count under the "DRM" umbrella. Does unskippable content at the start of a DVD count? Because I know plenty of people who now outright avoid buying any DVDs from brands who have taken this too far. Seriously, why do I need to sit through 30 seconds of US-based copyright warning that doesn't even apply to me here, and a load of disclaimers about interview content when there are no interviews on the DVD?

          I even know people who have taken DVDs back to the shop in extreme cases and demand

        • by Nf1nk (443791)
          I assumed they were talking about the broken CDs that were all the rage a few years ago, and that were still being sold in Euroland (I think they are still sold here, but I buy all my music used so its hard to tell what new cds are like).
          The Sony root kit disaster, and the like are what I thought this was about and again it had to do with the ability to rip it to an MP3 player.
    • by Tim C (15259) on Thursday November 22, 2007 @10:02AM (#21445711)
      Only in the US, my friend; everywhere else we're looking forward to Christmas. So yes, you're wrong.

      The clue was in the repeated use of the letters "UK" in the summary.
      • by Opie812 (582663) * on Thursday November 22, 2007 @10:34AM (#21445865)
        It was my understanding that the UK had thanksgiving as well. The only difference being it falls on July 4th.
  • OK? (Score:5, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday November 22, 2007 @09:52AM (#21445667)
    FYI, ERA asks BPI to drop DRM ASAP.
  • by Thanshin (1188877) on Thursday November 22, 2007 @09:58AM (#21445701)
    You set up an unfair system and many people fall while some people avoid the trap.

    After a while everybody knows about your trap and starts crying foul.

    That's the time you have to prepare your next unfair system.

    I fear the time when record labels say "We hear our customers and are removing the DRM system." followed by "Piracy is rampant! The only solution is...".
  • by leamanc (961376) on Thursday November 22, 2007 @09:59AM (#21445703) Homepage Journal

    ...but in the states, this is very apparent. Not only do we have big outlets like the Virgin Megastore [google.com] closing down in big cities, but long-standing "mom-and-pop", independent record stores are not making it. I see this with a lot of my old favorite record stores in the midwest, but also some of my favorite stores from when I lived on the left coast, like Aron's Records [blogging.la], an veritable institution I never thought would close down.

    Now, it may be easy to blame "downloading," but ask anyone who supported these record stores for years and there's two main reasons: 1) Lack of compelling content these days; and 2) general lack of trust for the record industry. When the old hippie burnout down the street is afraid to buy a CD because it might "have a virus on it," you know the MAFIAA have shot themselves in the foot. Unfortunately, they continue to find ways to make money, while the artists and record-shop owners are the ones being put out of business.

    • by Kupfernigk (1190345) on Thursday November 22, 2007 @10:16AM (#21445787)
      I think it's content,content,content. Why does the second hand CD shop in our town flourish (in fact, has expanded) when the new releases are slowly going down the tubes? Because, I suspect, quantity has proven the end of quality. In the good old days, mostly expected sales volumes were much lower, even for the good stuff. Now, the industry expects to sell huge numbers. It's Goodwin's Law only applied to recordings not money.

      If the music industry is a volume box shifting business, it has to rely on high volume low margin. It cannot expect the buyers to pay a premium price for singers and musicians who will be forgotten after they've had their Warhol (that's 15 minutes of fame).

      It's like the car industry. The margins on a BMW are high because it costs a lot to persuade you to buy it. The margins on a European supermini are minimal because it costs almost nothing to get people to buy one, but people won't pay a high price for it. The music industry is alone in wanting to sell you a Trabant with the marketing budget of a BMW. This business model is based on the idea that the public is, in effect, too stupid to tell a Trabant from a BMW. It can't be guaranteed that this will remain the case.

      • by Kjella (173770)

        In the good old days, mostly expected sales volumes were much lower, even for the good stuff. Now, the industry expects to sell huge numbers. It's Goodwin's Law only applied to recordings not money.
        Umm... unless there's a different law I'm not aware of, I don't see how nazis have much to do with anything.
        • by Artifakt (700173)
          I don't know if you're aware of it under it's right name or not, but to make his sentence make sense, try:

          Gresham's law: "Bad money drives out good" (colloquial version)

          (And the "Given enough time, someone inappropriately shouts Nazi" rule is Godwin's, not Goodwin's.)
      • by garett_spencley (193892) on Thursday November 22, 2007 @11:01AM (#21445989) Journal
        Exactly. While I am just speculating, I really think that if new albums sold for $1 - $4 each and provided an easy way to get the music on to an iPod or computer* then people would buy them up like candy.

        But $1 / song is simply too expensive for most people that I know. When a CD collection was *the* collection that someone chose to have then sure. But those were simpler times. We didn't have mass storage devices and DVDs (some people collected VHS tapes but most people chose to have a large CD collection or a large VHS collection .. now people can have both for cheap all they have to do is break a law that they think is silly or easy to ignore) ... we didn't have computers. So spending a couple hundred over a few years on a CD collection was worth it. But now it's the norm to fill a 20GB iPod with mp3s and if you did that at $1 / song (assuming 4MB / song) then you're looking at an investment of $5,000. Maybe I and everyone I know are just really unfortunate suckers who live well below the poverty line but I can't think of a single person that I know personally who would like the idea of spending $5,000 on music even over a few years. Most people that I know would see $5,000 as no more credit card debt, or a start to their child's college fund etc.

        * I'm not sure what that would be, heck it could be as simple as an instruction leaflet inside the jewel case, which wouldn't be useful for most people who already know what they're doing but it would be kind of like a stamp of approval from the record companies saying "We're with the times. We know you want this on your digital players so we're trying to help you with that". It could also maybe be in the form of a separate Joliet disk that has all the songs pre-ripped to mp3 with complete ID3 tags etc.
        • by Anonymous Coward
          Everyone knows how ridiculously cheap it is to make copies, either on disk or downloadable. The major *insist* on a pricing model from like 20 years ago, if they don't make so much a "unit" they throw a hissy fit. instead of acknowledging new cheap replicator technology, they use it, but they don't get it, they operate in a forced intellectual vacuum where they think consumers-potential customers-aren't aware of tech advances so they can keep getting gouged. It's stupid, if they would have just dropped pric
      • by Rogerborg (306625)

        It's Goodwin's Law only applied to recordings not money.

        As the number of sales increase, the probability of buying a Nazi or Hitler influenced track approaches one?

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by morcego (260031)
        Humm, ok, this might sound stupid but ...

        Isn't it more reasonable to suppose all those music stores are closing because they can't compete with the kind of pricing practices implemented by places like Walmart ? (Do they sell CD/DVDs ?)

        I mean, if you can enter a store that has all the music you want (for most people that is the 20 newest releases), for a small price, why would you go to mom-and-pop store ?

        Don't we see that happening is almost all other kinds of business ? At least were I live, all mom-and-p
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by CodeBuster (516420)
        The music industry is alone in wanting to sell you a Trabant with the marketing budget of a BMW.

        For the benefit of readers who are not old enough to remember the Cold War the Trabant [wikipedia.org] aka "die Traubi" was a low quality automobile with a fiber glass body and a two cylinder two stroke engine produced by the former East Germany (GDR) [wikipedia.org] before the Berlin Wall [wikipedia.org] came down. It had a reputation for being noisy, dirty, and low performance, the car took 21 seconds from 0 to 100 km/h (62.5 mph) and the top speed was 1
        • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

          by Gordonjcp (186804)
          The important thing you missed about the Trabbi is that it was designed to able to be fixed by a drunk East German farmer in the dark during a snowstorm with a pair of pliers and some cable ties.

          They're remarkably reliable if you service them correctly, and incredibly easy to fix if they do break.
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by sortia (1191847)
      Virgin Music closing stores probably has more to do with Virgin selling off & franchising out the brand than DRM, but im sure Branson wouldn't be selling if he was making a fortune from them still.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward
      Actually, I'd attribute CD stores going out of business for the same reason horse & buggy dealers slowly went out of business (or switched) when cars came onto the scene. The goal was transportation, the products was a means to an end. Overall, cars were a better solution for most people on the transportation problem.

      The CD may be superior quality (same argument was made for the vinyl record before 8-tracks/tapes/CDs surpassed it) but the goal and how it is provided (entertainment, music, whatever) is
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Cathbard (954906)
      The buggy whip analogy is a good one in this instance. Stores are closing because we longer need these overpriced pieces of plastic to get our music. It's time the record industry died and the music industry was born. Lets start giving our money to the musicians instead of these unethical record companies, they are the true pirates.

      Radiohead have shown everybody the way with In Rainbows.

      Die, Die, Die My Darling ....... Death to the record industry, Long live the music industry.

    • by Rogerborg (306625) on Thursday November 22, 2007 @11:30AM (#21446197) Homepage

      ask anyone who supported these record stores for years

      and they'll say "WHAT? SPEAK UP, WHIPPERSNAPPER. DOWN-LORDIE EMM PEE WHAT? Y'ALL FROM THE FUTURE?"

      Buying hard copies at retail is a geezer's activity. Once you can store your entire collection on a fingernail-sized iPod clone, and get new tracks within seconds using weekend-daddy's credit card, why on earth would you want to go out and buy a huge bit of plastic to store a copy of the two tracks you want plus eight that you don't in a medium that you'll never listen to?

      Physical distribution of CDs is dead in the water. It's an inefficient, unnecessary and expensive holdover from the ancient past. You might as well give away a free buggy whip with each 'album' (another dying concept) to try and boost sales.

      Lest you retort with the stale old "There will always be a market for uncompressed music", fie on that. CDs are effectively compressed [georgegraham.com]. Audiophiles already need to get their fix elsewhere, and their sad devotion to their ancient religion demonstrably isn't enough to keep disks-and-mortar stores open.

      CDs are dead as a retail proposition. It's time to put down the buggy whip, and move on.

      • Dynamic range compression and file size compression are two different things.
        • by Rogerborg (306625)

          Dynamic range compression and file size compression are two different things.

          And in what way is never using 3 bits out of 16 not "effectively" compressing? If you can find a CD made in the last six months (you know, one that might actually be on sale in a disks-and-mortar shop) that uses the full dynamic range, then we can talk. Until then, it'll just be you and your gold plated unidirectional cables arguing over theory.

          • It sounds like you don't know jack shit about theory. Whether 100 consecutive samples have the value 0 or 32000 has nothing to do with file compression. Go back to school troll.
      • by xtracto (837672)
        Physical distribution of CDs is dead in the water. It's an inefficient, unnecessary and expensive holdover from the ancient past. You might as well give away a free buggy whip with each 'album' (another dying concept) to try and boost sales.

        Uhhh I could kind of agree with the statement that CDs are dead but the concept of "Album" meaning a couple of songs all centered around a specific theme is quite fine(some of them even following a story, see for example Legendary Tales or Symphony of Enchanted Lands fr
    • by jrumney (197329)

      ...but in the states, this is very apparent. Not only do we have big outlets like the Virgin Megastore closing down in big cities

      Branson sold off his UK stores [bbc.co.uk] a couple of months back. I guess he's getting out of the business globally.

  • Finally... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday November 22, 2007 @10:00AM (#21445709)
    It can't be good for business if making a purchase becomes this difficult and piratism is actually much easier. Some weeks ago I was actually looking for a song in online music stores, and I found what I was looking for. Then trying to buy it was the problem, some were not selling to Europe, some had some ridicolous protections, weird formats. I was supposed to install some plugin/program to even listen to the music I just bought. For me that was too much to ask, and I after some time I just gave up.
  • Because (Score:4, Funny)

    by JustOK (667959) on Thursday November 22, 2007 @10:06AM (#21445729) Journal
    They don't need DRM because security cameras in the UK are everywhere and they can see and hear each song that they listen to.
    • No, silly. It's the government who listen in to everyone using the surveillance kit, not the megacorps! However, thanks to the latest communications channels, the government can now quickly provide data on up to 25 million people at once to those megacorps with very low overheads...

    • by unapersson (38207)
      Yes, and all those annoying US security camera clip shows are just a figment of my imagination.
  • ...I can't see DRM making much difference to brick and mortar stores but this DRM hurting physical CD sales attitude is caused by the same mentality that piracy is to blame for the major record labels current downfall.

    Still, it's nice to see the music industries oversimplified logic and ignorance of reality working against it for once of course so I'll keep my mouth shut and pretend they're right and it's all DRMs fault because in a strange twist of fate it can only be a good thing having the distributors a
    • I suspect they're talking about CDs that have been sonied [slashdot.org], that is, distributed with software on them that automatically installs a rootkit onto the victim's computer if inserted into a Windows-based PC.

      Now, if I were a retailer, I'd just not sell the CDs, or if under legal obligation to display them I'd price them as high as legally able, and place a sticker on each one warning the customer that the CD is defective, with my sales people trained to discourage anyone who actually gets as far as the counte

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by ShadowEFX (152354)
      Ummm....no.

      I, and many of my friends, haven't purchased a CD in a long time now because there is an increasing chance that it will not work on our equipment. They still stamp CD on discs that do not follow the standard, and their label of "Contains copy protection blahblahblah not work with all blahblah" is a cop out. I was burned a few times with this, on both older and new players.

      That's your effect - we don't trust the media enough to purchase it, whether from the risk of a non-functional product or so
      • by Xest (935314)
        Well I understand that bothers a few, but for every person that understands that there may be potential problems there seems to be thousands more who simply don't know what DRM is and don't care enough or even think to check for copy protection warnings on the back of CDs.

        Most people I know buy CDs to play in their car if anywhere and not their PC so it's simply not an issue if it has computer based DRM - the amount of CDs that have DRM that effects playing in a standard car based CD player still seems to b
  • by betterunixthanunix (980855) on Thursday November 22, 2007 @10:10AM (#21445747)
    The unfortunate truth is that most people don't actually care about DRM, and the **AA knows this, and knows that even with DRM the discs will sell very well. People half expect the systems to be protected, and half don't care at all as long as they get their music and movies. Only the more educated users can even think that they should be able to make personal copies of these things, but they don't care enough to go out and get programs or media that allow that. This is the unfortunate thing that people like RMS neglect to account for -- consumers don't really care about freedom, they just want entertainment and flashiness.
    • by Yvanhoe (564877) on Thursday November 22, 2007 @10:26AM (#21445821) Journal
      Well we can consider that MP3 is pretty mainstream by now and not a geek-only thing anymore. When people can't play their CDs on their computer, rip them to put them on their MP3 player or copy files as they want, they may not understand what is going on but they do care. And like always, they blame it on the seller or the artist.

      consumers don't really care about freedom, they just want entertainment and flashiness
      They do care, put freedom in a slogan, it does sell. Most of them just don't know how to achieve freedom in IT. After all, it can be confusing when open source is labeled as communism, Vista supposed to free creativity and DRMs to be a consumer service.
    • by Felix Da Rat (93827) on Thursday November 22, 2007 @10:30AM (#21445837)
      While I'd agree with you in general, I think that more and more of the Joe 6 pack crowd are starting to run into this. Since almost every device now offers the ability to play media formats (i.e. phones) you'll start to run into music format lock ins. Today and a lot of people have more than one computer (home, office, laptop, kid's computer, spouse's computer, etc.) people are probably running into the interoperability issues or will at some point soon.

      Last month I authorized my 5th computer to work with iTunes, so me and mine can keep playing music I've bought. Now I can't listen to it at the office. That doesn't really make any sense to me, because I could if I'd bought a CD instead, I'd just have to carry around a binder of music the size of a desk.

      The convenience of digital music is that it can be moved around and taken with you easily. DRM stops that and we'll just keep running into it.
    • I disagree with your assumption, when the common man puts his brand new purchased DVD is his brand new DVD player and finds it wont run, takes it back to the store and is told that it's an anti-piracy system that has stopped his legally purchased products from working, then word gets around pretty fast in ALL circles, and no-one wants them any more.

      (eg, Sony's Casino Royal not working on Sony's own current off the shelf players)
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by websitebroke (996163)
      Fortunately, I've been hearing quite a bit about DRM from my Joe-Sixpack friends lately. This apathy toward your own rights that people seem to have is slowly going away - at least in this particular place. It's a fairly easy thing to explain, unlike FOSS.

      For example:

      "Remember how you could copy tapes/CDs without restriction? Wouldn't it be nice to copy your downloaded music the same way? Well, you can, except for the fact that the record companies are using DRM to stop you, and are still charging as if you
    • My stepmother is NOT tech literate. Not in the slightest.

      She likes shiny things and the other day she asked me to put her "Shakira" CD on to her MP3 player.
      The DRM on it prevented me from doing so, not by any program (I know to hold down shift!) but by the method of the tracks being dodgy and extra data in place to throw off CDROM drives. Well anyway, long story short CDEX wasn't having it and I had to go and say to her that it couldn't be done because the record company have put some protection on there th
  • The ERA hopes the industry will drop DRM in time for the holiday season. Good luck with that.


    I think a small holiday would be in order no matter how long it takes to defeat DRM.
  • "Please, stop this DRM crap as we're NOT prepared to put up with a new year rush of postal (as in out for blood) consumers returning christmas presents that won't play in their xbox 360's!" Last time I looked, any CD player will play Redbook audio. DRM does NOT conform to Redbook, ergo any DRM CD CANNOT be advertised or sold as an audio compact disc.
  • I have just now started buying downloaded music because Amazon has started selling non-DRM'ed higher bit-rate mp3's. Up until now I would not buy music downloads due to the DRM or because it was not available in a format that I wanted to use and I wouldn't buy CDs because I will not buy the new disks that look like a CD but isn't really a CD.
  • by b1gp0pp4 (1157069) <letterbot69@yahoo.com> on Thursday November 22, 2007 @10:36AM (#21445875)
    Two and a half years ago, I forgot to lock my truck.
    A thief came by and stole:
    1. A cup of change (for the meter)
    2. A fresh pack of Kamel Red Lights
    3. My entire wallet of CDs -- a ratio of 90% store-bought CDs and 10% assorted collections of mixes from parties, birthdays, longs nights of ecstasy, and the kind of presents girls with too much time on their hands make for you.
    I went to ye olde Wal-Mart, bought a satellite radio, and I haven't bought a single CD since. I can record off the radio legally, the songs save on my radio for ~90 days (XM just imposed some time limits on the songs), and I can also put MP3s on the unit with a USB cord (the little trapezoid type). I haven't downloaded any music in ages, as I can get all the popular crap on the radio and I feel justified in re-acquiring the CDs that I had previously purchased on the Internet. Whether due to my own incompetence or not, I'm not going to spend another $1000 dollars replenishing my lifetime collection of CDs.
    I can only imagine how some of the older folks feel. Who the hell wants to replace their collection of records, tapes, 8-tracks, et cetera everytime a new medium is embraced by a bloated industry in order to SELL more copies. It's not about the music!
    Viva la revolution!
    P.S. XM is 12.99 a month, so it's not like I found the free solution, but it has the wonderful ratio of entertainment hours per monthly fee as those crack-like MMORPG games (UO, WoW, EQ...)
  • I don't know about you guys but when I go to a record store, be it a small independent store or a chain like HMV, Virgin, Sanity etc, and buy an album I can do whatever I want with it. I can copy it, I can rip it into .mp3, FLAC, .aac etc etc for any music player I might have. I buy quite alot of music varied from old school jazz to new rock, indie, hip-hop, metal and I'm yet to encounter any forms of Digital Rights Management ie. I've never been restricted from doing what I like to music on a legitimately

  • Parent article (Score:3, Informative)

    by JackSpratts (660957) on Thursday November 22, 2007 @10:53AM (#21445955) Homepage

    here's a working link to the actual article (not blog) from the nominally subscription-only financial times:

    http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/6ed6dd08-970a-11dc-b2da-0000779fd2ac.html

    - js.

  • It wants its Winter Solstice celebrations back. (For the un-edumecated, that is the year before Constantin unified the Roman religions).
  • by tkrotchko (124118) * on Thursday November 22, 2007 @11:14AM (#21446073) Homepage
    I had to chuckle when I read this from the article:

        "believing instead that the near-ubiquitous practice of file-sharing can be abolished with more draconian copy protection mechanisms"

    No no no. The people running record companies are not stupid. They're smarter than most people. They know they can't stop file sharing; it's impossible. But like all businesses, they invest money to protect revenue. DRM is not an attempt to stop copying, it's an attempt to shore up revenue.

    To put it more simply, the record companies must believe they are better off revenue-wise putting on copy protection. If they spend $Z to get DRM on every CD, they'll stop X% piracy leading to $Y more revenue. If Y is greater than Z, then it makes sense to put on DRM. If Y is less than Z, then the DRM won't be put on.

    It's really that simple.
    • "To put it more simply, the record companies must believe they are better off revenue-wise putting on copy protection."

      I'm sure they believe this. This doesn't mean that they've actually given the evidence an honest look. All too often, the people who make the decisions see what they want to see and ignore everything else.
    • To put it more simply, the record companies must believe they are better off revenue-wise putting on copy protection. If they spend $Z to get DRM on every CD, they'll stop X% piracy leading to $Y more revenue. If Y is greater than Z, then it makes sense to put on DRM. If Y is less than Z, then the DRM won't be put on.

      Your calculation ignores 3 important factors:

      1. You ignore the number of sales that will be lost _because_ of the fact you're using DRM.
      2. Much of the "piracy" (actually, copyright infringement
    • by roystgnr (4015) *
      If they spend $Z to get DRM on every CD, they'll stop X% piracy leading to $Y more revenue. If Y is greater than Z, then it makes sense to put on DRM. If Y is less than Z, then the DRM won't be put on.

      It's really that simple.


      "For every complex problem, there is an answer which is clear, simple, and wrong."

      For one thing, you missed the fact that DRM will also stop V% of legitimate sales leading to $W less revenue, because people don't want to buy crippled products. Whether it's unskippable commercials and n
  • There is something about the way the DRM clique go about things that makes me think it isn't so much a question about money as one about not being able to tolerate that there are people in the world that listen to music and enjoy themselves. I mean, if it was only about money they would have dropped DRM and all the other draconian efforts that will, in the long run only alienate their customers.
  • Anybody suprised... (Score:2, Interesting)

    by jopsen (885607)
    I don't buy my music anymore I've given up... I don't like to download it illegally either. Can't buy cds because I'm too lazy to actually change disc, I want my music digital. So where do I get my music:

    Usually I listen to internet radio, particularly last.fm. Then I record/rip it, which is luckily perfectly legal in my country (Denmark).
    Once in a while when there's this track that I've just got to have I'll try to see if I can buy without DRM, that fails I spend 10 min. adding it to my last.fm playlist
    • by Fweeky (41046)
      All the music I've bought recently has been from Magnatune [magnatune.com] and Boomkat [boomkat.com]. The selection's limited, and Boomkat is uncomfortably overpriced, but at least they're trying; not only do both lack DRM, but both sell FLAC too.
  • Like many others, I have always looked for DRM free music and will go to the best source that can give it to me. Sometimes that ends up with the artist being paid and sometimes it doesn't.

    Once there is a way to buy all music without DRM, I'll use it because I want the artists to get paid for their work.

    Unfortunately though, through their insistence on using DRM, particularly for inline sales, the industry has so far forced the customer to go elsewhere for DRM free music. Over time this has led to the esta
    • Once there is a way to buy all music without DRM, I'll use it because I want the artists to get paid for their work.

      Buy the music without DRM that you can buy. If the options are DRM or nothing (or unauthorised copies) then you can always go with "nothing".

      You can get legal DRM-free music from iTunes, eMusic, and Amazon.
  • !copyprotection (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Myopic (18616) on Thursday November 22, 2007 @12:06PM (#21446453)
    Once again I insist that our community stop calling it copy protection. Does it protect my copies? No. We also need to stop calling it DRM. Does it manage my digital rights? No. (In fact it does the opposite of that, it cripples my digital rights -- DRC.)

    We should call it what it is, which is Playback Prevention. That's what the technology does, it prevents playback. Both the consumers and the producers can agree that's what it does, although we will disagree about whether or not that's a good thing for technology to do.

    Tag this story !copyprotection !drm playbackprevention.
    • by xtracto (837672)
      No. We also need to stop calling it DRM. Does it manage my digital rights? No. (In fact it does the opposite of that, it cripples my digital rights

      What is wrong with calling it Digital Restrictions Management??
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by joe 155 (937621)
        there is nothing really wrong with digital restrictions management as a name for it, it does describe what it does, but it is the best name we could give it to communicate our point?

        For me I have to side with the parent poster, playback prevention communicates the message so quickly and easily that when inevitably members of our family ask us why their music won't play we can just say "ah, you bought the stuff with playback prevention...". It's a little political but thats just the way these things go...
  • ...but, require a WARNING label on all DRM'ed disks. Let the consumer make an educated purchase decision.

    Also, see http://www.riaaradar.com/ [riaaradar.com]

    Carey

  • DRM doesn't work effectively, because it makes legitimate users feel oppressed, violates their fair use rights, and is always possible to work around. But would you rather have lawsuits for discovery of infringment? Yes, I would. DRM stops people from doing illegal things (like sharing a song with 100 "P2P friends" online) which is good, but also stops people from doing legal fair-use things (like using that data on a different device, or editing it)... In contrast, lawsuits against suspected infringers
  • ...whether they're talking about brick and mortar stores, digital stores, or both.

    I live in the UK, get through a fair amount of music and gave up on brick'n'mortars years ago - buying online is more conveneient in every conceivable way for me (no crowds, no cramped and sweaty ride on the tube, no having to hunt down a member of staff to find out where they keep their Classical Nu-Bhangra Trance, no queues to pay, no queues to listen to a possible impulse buy, reviews a few clicks away, no bein gharassed by
  • Long ago, people used to play their own music on musical instruments or just sing to entertain themselves at home (the rich could attend a concert). Then along came the record player and people could sit back and rest a few minutes before having to get up and change the record. Then along came the automatic changer that would lift the needle arm and move it aside so the next record could drop and be played automatically. When the CD came along, people had to change CDs manually, but very soon there were

  • MP3 Compatible??? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Rufty (37223) on Thursday November 22, 2007 @03:49PM (#21448055) Homepage
    What we need is for CD makers that *don't* use DRM to get together and make a "MP3 friendly" logo.

Faith may be defined briefly as an illogical belief in the occurence of the improbable. - H. L. Mencken

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