FTC Town Hall to Address Digital Rights Management Technologies - Event Takes Place Wednesday, March 25, 2009, in Seattle
DRM using online based activation has made it impossible for me to purchase and use numerous personal computer games in the last year. My computer that I use to play these games is not connected to the internet, to avoid problems with spyware, viruses and other bothersome issues that come with the internet. Therefore I cannot go and buy a legitimate copy of a game and play it on my computer. I have read various news stories citing the ineffectiveness of these online copy protections, as hackers will circumvent them and release "cracked" games for free. The only people that the game publishers are hurting with these draconian measures are there own legitimate costumers. For example, I have bought games from the company Electronic arts dating back to the mid nineties, and over the last year their online activation requirements have prevented me from purchasing the following titles from them: Spore, Dead Space, Command and Conquer: Red Alert 3, Mass Effect and Mirror's Edge. Games from other publishers that I have not been able to purchase is as follows: Far Cry 2, Bioshock, Sacred 2. The way that these companies treat their customers atrocious, and it is of little surprise to me that Electronic Art's sales are down. Instead of pursuing the actual people who pirate their games, they are punishing people like myself who buy games legitimately. I have never burned a copy of a game for a friend or downloaded a cracked version of a game: Why am I being treated like a criminal? What these publishers fail to realize is that there will always be a group of people who will "crack" and steal their games, and that these people who download illegal versions of software would not likely go out and buy the legitimate versions if the illegal ones suddenly disappeared. Its time to stop penalizing loyal customers and take away SecuROM and other similar protection schemes, and take a more reasonable approach, otherwise sales will fall and there will be outcry as long as these methods are used.