Well, today, or at least some time around today in GMT time is Anti-DRM day. As a sideline to my normal ramblings I thought I would have a go at making my position clear. By the end of this post my position will probably be about as clear as mud due to my lack of writing skills, bit I’ll give it a go anyway.
In my general opinion DRM is a bad thing, or at least having many different forms of DRM is a bad thing. I don’t think that anyone would be so against DRM if it was compatible across devices & softwares, for example it really wouldn’t bother me as long as I could listen to Windows Media DRM’d files on my iPod and iTunes DRM’d files on Media Player.
In the original formats used to distribute media the fact that they were physical objects with, at first, no way to copy them provided some sort of built in protection. You could lend an LP to someone but if they wanted a copy they would have to go out and buy it themselves. With the advent of cassette recorders bootleg copies could be easily made, but it wasn’t necessarily the nicest way to listen to the music. CD’s at first could also be copied onto tape, then onto other CD’s but it was time consuming and expensive. The internet and MP3 (generally) has however opened up a massive way to ‘share’ files with other people. The main issue though is this word ‘share’.
If sharing were truly what was going on then it wouldn’t be so bad. You could lend someone a file but after a while it would expire, essentially giving it back, much as it was initially with LP’s, cassettes and CD’s, but when people stop buying music then income for companies decreases.
We all know that in reality artists are paid too much but if music was just given away all we would get is cheap & shoddy bands with records no one really wants.
I suppose what I am trying to say is that DRM should really be unified and refined and until this happens, get rid of it. I want to listen to my music the way I want, without restrictions.