Wednesday, November 29, 2006

DRM is evil

DRM or Digital Rights Management is more than just an annoyance. It is an assult on you as a consumer. Its purpose is to allow -them- to restrict what *you* can do with *your* music which *you* paid -them- for.

With all the recent chat about, and its imminant closure the options for buying DRM free music are diminishing.

There is no reason why other sites cannot offer DRM free music for a reasonable price. I can buy a CD from cd-wow for £2.99, and apply a £0.50 or £1.00 discount to it, where they probably spend about £0.50 for shipping, leaving about £1.50 - £2.00 for them. Now I'm no businesssman, but I doubt they are making less than £0.50 on the sale, leaving the cost price of the CD at somewhere between £1.00 and £1.50. Why can't I buy the content for that price online? Why do itunes want $0.99 per track for aweful quality, DRM ridden downloads?

Where does the itunes $0.99 go? According to various articles about $0.34 goes to Apple, the rest to the music company, of which about $0.10 goes to the artist. I'd prefer to give the $0.10 directly to the artist...

What if I change player? Perhaps I have bought music from Rhapsody or MSN Music and want to play it on my Zune. Perhaps I buy from Apple and want to play on my random £10 256Mb MP3 player. Stuck? You bet I am! In my opinion this is the one that will bite the companies in the long run, people will revolt after finding that their music libraries are useless except on antique devices.

If you buy content with DRM you are perpetuating the problem and storing up problems for the future, you have been warned. I'll just stick with my 3221 3222 DRM free mp3s, which I get to stream to our 2 PCs, laptop, xbmc and listen to on my iPod at work or in the car. Its great, its almost like I can do what I want with *my* music, a freedom soon to be relinquished from consumers.

DRM is designed to hurt you, don't let it!


Sethy said...

Just convert your iTunes m4p's to unprotected mp3's!
SoundTaxi's so an easy prog, but it's perfectly useful to my mind...

Simon said...

I am reluctant to buy from Apple, as I believe that sends the message to them that you accept their DRM, when in actual fact you intend to strip their DRM, which would probably violate their terms