FTC Town Hall to Address Digital Rights Management Technologies - Event Takes Place Wednesday, March 25, 2009, in Seattle
It is my belief that the concept of Digital Rights Management is as worthless a method of controlling the proliferation of digital properties as speed limit signs are for controlling the maximum speed a person will travel in their vehicle. Essentially, if one wants to steal or pirate any given material, be it a music track, a video game, a movie, or any other digital product, one will find a way. In the meantime, technologies such as DRM that limit the way a paying customer can use the product he rightfully paid for posit little more than an encouragement to steal. If I pay 0.99 for a music track on Apple iTunes, it should be my prerogative where, when, and how I listen to that track. I made the decision to take the high road and pay my own money for a song I may listen to perhaps once or twice a month, why should a company control the method by which I do so? I would take any wager that states 100 of the 100 top selling tracks on iTunes are not available through illegal methods from any of a hundred avenues. However, those consumers that choose to pursue the avenues that are legal and upright are punished with restrictive regulation and electronic locks preventing us from enjoying that which we purchased.