FTC Town Hall to Address Digital Rights Management Technologies - Event Takes Place Wednesday, March 25, 2009, in Seattle #539814-00384

Submission Number:
Chris Mitchell
Initiative Name:
FTC Town Hall to Address Digital Rights Management Technologies - Event Takes Place Wednesday, March 25, 2009, in Seattle
Hi, I can't stand DRM because 1/10 times the stuff doesn't work for me, it sucks when you go out and buy a game and get it home install it and than it crashes your system. Or thinks you don't have the disk in the system (even though you do) or in the case of Spore (by Electronic Arts aka. EA) caused my system to BSOD (Blue Screen Of Death) giving the error .... Windows has encountered an unknown error ... it took me about a month before I could play it and the only way I could do that was to go to some website that had cracks and download one of them, it wasn't till the third or fourth one that I downloaded that didn't have a virus in it. It shouldn't be that way. I went out to Future Shop and purchased the game, I gave EA my $50 and what do I the consumer get for it, I have to go to some website that McAfee SiteAdvisor gives a RED warning to, just to download some crack that will allow me to play MY game. Meanwhile people who paid nothing to download the game from a download site are playing the game before me, somebody who purchased it. How is that fair. How is that just. DRM is supposed to prevent piracy, well if you ask me, all it is doing is encouraging it. It clearly doesn't prevent piracy I mean look at SPORE people had that game working before me I understand that people have to protect what they make, but this really is going too far. Now I am not saying that there is no room for DRM, it has a place in rental products and trialware but beyond that there is no purpose for it. And than there is the downloadable programs. Awhile back I downloaded the trial for Photoshop CS3 from Adobe's website. After it downloaded I tried to install it and it had a cd check on it (by that I mean, partway into the install of the program it checks to make sure that you have the official cd inserted into the cd-rom drive and if you don't it cancels the install). I couldn't get it to work but fortunately I was only trying the program. there where 100's of people on there forum who had purchased the software and couldn't get it to install. Apparently if you had any legacy software on your system from them you would have this problem. But if not it would usually work. Now this isn't DRM in it's standard call-home, form but it works somewhat the same way. Lastly, Digitally Distributed Music. (this example didn't affect me personally but is did affect a lot of people, because I will not download any DRM music) Recently online distributors of music MSN Music Store for example shut down there DRM servers after sending an email to all of it's customers who purchased (or rented as I prefer to call it) music from them stating that they will no longer be authorizing music any more and that means that next time you install windows (which in my case is every 1-2 years, but again I am not affected by this) that ALL the music that was "purchased" (read sarcastically) will not work. Now who is this affecting, the LEGAL purchaser of the music, who is it not affecting, the people who download there music illegally online. Yet another example of how DRM, a technology that's purpose is solely to prevent illegal distribution and copying. In Closing. Who does DRM hurt, DRM hurts the guy who purchased BioShock and cant install it because he has 2 cd-rom drives in his pc, it hurts the grandmother who purchased a cd from iTunes and it won't play on here Zune her kids got her for Christmas, it hurts the kid who's parents bought a used copy of Spore for him on eBay for his birthday and when he goes to install it on his pc finds out that the serial key has been used the maximum amount of times and it won't let him play his new game. It hurts the father who can't make a backup copy of his 8 yo son's favorite movie so he doesn't have to purchase it a 3rd time. Online stores who get less business because customers don't want DRM. The Consumer. Who does it not hurt, that's easy. It doesn't hurt the pirates because they crack it as soon as it comes out.