The times they are a-changin’.

This post seems to be older than 17 years—a long time on the internet. It might be outdated.

Pete Cashmore over at Mashable wrote:


Meanwhile, it emerged today as a result of SEC filings that Apple is being sued over an alleged monopoly. The allegation is that Apple’s DRM is monopolistic, since it prevents iTunes music from being played on anything apart from an iPod and vice versa (songs bought elsewhere don’t tend to work with iPods).

Well duh. DRM has always been a two fold issue. First, it supports the RIAAs infantile desire requirement to “protect” “their” music. Second, it’s a reasonably good business model: keep people locked into your system.

But there are issues.

First, DRM for the RIAAs sake is one of those things where it really only hurts the honest people. Current DRM systems suck balls because their implemented poorly. Thus, someone like DVD John is able to crack them within hours of release. The honest people don’t know how to unlock their music and the dishonest people do, causing hell for the rest of everyone else.

Locking people into your system may be a good thing. That is, until people jump ship and go to your competitors product. Then what? In a world where everything must, and I do mean MUST, communicate with EVERYTHING else, proprietary formats are doomed to failure. Case in point: Betamax, ATRAC3, UMD. Ok, actually that’s more than one and they are all Sony technologies (which I currently ban). But I think the point is still valid.

So what? Well, I hope the coming year sees the change in companies that I have been seeking for years. Much like the proverbial “Peace on Earth”, I doubt it will happen. But it’s something to consider. For any companies or persons at companies who happen to not only stumble upon this post, but also happen to read this far: I just want to let you know that my purchasing choices do tend to reflect my desire for a level of openness: open source, non-proprietary, APIs, etc.

P.S. I found the original Mashable post via Scoble’s Google Shared RSS, it’s pretty cool and picks up on a lot of things I don’t see in my limited set. Thanks Robert!