FTC Town Hall to Address Digital Rights Management Technologies - Event Takes Place Wednesday, March 25, 2009, in Seattle
I believe DRM has become so intrusive and restricting of a product that it almost encourages pirating and stealing software. Most products I purchase, I expect to be able to use 10 or 20 years in the future if I so wish. The current DRM on most products currently on the market, specifically computer software, will not give me that option. For example, some software requires the user to activate it via internet on the company's server. I personally have run into the problem of these servers being shut down after a period of time or are down for maintenance. This causes the user to be unable to use the software that they purchased. Another restriction is a limit of how many installs a user can have. Currently, the number is an extremely low number, usually between 3 and 5 installs. There are ways to deactivate the software on the company's server and install it again on another machine. However, there is no safety nets in place to automatically deactivate the software in the event of a system failure. If a hard drive or entire system fails, the user loses an install. In short, I believe the current DRM technologies in place on computer software specifically are harmful to the consumer and does little to hinder piracy and may in fact promote it. I request that DRM be lifted completely or at least less restrictive toward the user.