DRM: Why Apple Has it Wrong

A few days ago, a Janet Meyer article on “Apple Matters”:http://www.applematters.com/index.php/section/comments/is-big-brother-on-your-ipod/ sparked a phenomenal discussion for and against Apple’s DRM policies. If you are not aware, Apple has a *Digital Rights Management* [DRM] system that “protects” the music it sells from the iTunes music store: it determines where you can play it, how you can play it, how many machines you can play it on and so on. It is proprietary, so if Apple controls the online music market, Apple also automatically controls how, where, why, when we listen to music we buy from them.

To cut a long story short, Janet was making the point that Apple may have a closed music format but as long as consumers have no trouble with it, consumers have a choice to buy CDs instead, the market will decide what is best.

Ah yes, the market. That all-knowing, all-seeing, all-singing, all-dancing market. It knows. In a _perfect_ society with fully informed consumers who have _true_ choices, the market knows. Elections would be marvellous with fully informed voters with _true_ choices as well Read the rest of this entry »