FTC Town Hall to Address Digital Rights Management Technologies - Event Takes Place Wednesday, March 25, 2009, in Seattle
The use of DRM related technologies is harmful in the video games industry. To provide an example of harmful DRM technology in the video game industry, Microsoft's "Xbox LIVE." Through the use of Microsoft points, which are used to purchase downloadable content (such as small games, add ons and expansion packs and other items which enhance the use of the Xbox 360 platform for the end user) users are allowed to download items online and use them on their Xbox 360. If the hard drive the content was downloaded to is removed from the original Xbox it was used to download through (say, taking one person's hard drive to another's house to play certain games with specials unlocked), if the other Xbox is not connected to Microsoft's service, the content is unusable. This means if a user loses their internet connection but still retains their username they downloaded the content with and have a different Xbox, they cannot use their already downloaded, and purchased, content because of DRM. In this case, if they were to get a new Xbox and had no connection to the internet, they would lose access to all the content they paid for because there is no way to transfer the rights over, only the name the used on the original. Had there not been DRM, any content connected to any account would be easily transferred to a new Xbox without being required to be connected to Xbox Live.