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Last post Author Topic: Why Vista's DRM Is Bad For You and other jewels by Bruce Schneier  (Read 11419 times)

urlwolf

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Bruce Schneier is a security guru. He's also a good writer:

Why Vista's DRM Is Bad For You
http://schneier.com/essay-157.html

In general, all essays are good:
http://www.schneier.com/essays.html


edit by jgpaiva: fixed link
« Last Edit: November 25, 2008, 07:17:13 AM by jgpaiva »

zridling

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Re: Why Vista's DRM Is Bad For You and other jewels by Bruce Schneier
« Reply #1 on: November 25, 2008, 06:04:21 PM »
And it looks like Mr. Jobs' "No DRM!" Apple is taking it one step further, building it into their monitors, so that certain content won't even play on their systems! Wow, if only they spent as much coding energy on things users perennially want.

epaalx

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Re: Why Vista's DRM Is Bad For You and other jewels by Bruce Schneier
« Reply #2 on: December 06, 2008, 06:13:04 PM »
These days, with pay-per-click and click-throughput statistics dictating renumeration, trusting a blogger is impossible because there's a financial motivation to attract contraversy or consensus.
Computers are getting more complicated and I reckon there's a deep misunderstanding of Vista and many people who can't handle it will scoff at it. Oh well, that's life and Microsoft is in computer business, so, they gotta live with it.

However, with a first paragraph:
"Windows Vista .. These features will make your computer less reliable and less secure. They'll make your computer less stable and run slower. They will cause technical support problems. They may even require you to upgrade some of your peripheral hardware and existing software. And these features won't do anything useful. In fact, they're working against you."
the blogger is obviously already preaching to Microsoft mongers. Personally, I don't know any one, except virus writers, who write software to work against the user, so, this is ludicrous. I admit sometimes software has some negative impact on the user, but never against the user.

However, the stupidest paragraph in the article:
"It's all complete nonsense. Microsoft could have easily told the entertainment industry that it was not going to deliberately cripple its operating system, take it or leave it. With 95% of the operating system market, where else would Hollywood go? Sure, Big Media has been pushing DRM, but recently some--Sony after their 2005 debacle and now EMI Group--are having second thoughts. "
Microsoft has not implemented Blu-Ray playback into Vista's Media Centre, and it seems, never will (perhaps until 7 and even that isn't confirmed). (There are messy 3rd party software, but when I read forums, owners are constantly having problems, in comparison to hassle-free Media Centre.) So, the result -  Vista (and Windows in general) cannot play Blu-Ray and what is Hollywood doing? Absolutely nothing - the PC/HTPC Blu-Ray playback is a mess, and Hollywood either don't care or likes it like that. So, where is it that Microsoft is dictating terms to Hollywood?

Oh, by the way... I don't mind DRM. Actually, I don't care about DRM. As long as impact of DRM is known (for example, with HDCP) my decision to use DRM products will be made on case-by-case basis just as any informed customer should. [Of course, same cannot be said for hacker's OSs, like desktop Linux, which will never support DRM.]
« Last Edit: December 06, 2008, 06:30:27 PM by epaalx »

Eóin

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Re: Why Vista's DRM Is Bad For You and other jewels by Bruce Schneier
« Reply #3 on: December 07, 2008, 07:02:33 PM »
Personally, I don't know any one, except virus writers, who write software to work against the user, so, this is ludicrous. I admit sometimes software has some negative impact on the user, but never against the user.

Well the whole point of DRM is to artificially limit what users can do with content and their machines. That sound like working against users to me.

epaalx

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Re: Why Vista's DRM Is Bad For You and other jewels by Bruce Schneier
« Reply #4 on: December 08, 2008, 04:21:54 AM »
Well the whole point of DRM is to artificially limit what users can do with content and their machines. That sound like working against users to me.
No, the point of DRM is to enforce an agreement that you implicitly make with the content provider. They own the content, so, they have right to dictate the terms.
Don't like the agreement (including the DRM)? Don't get the content! DRM issue solved.
« Last Edit: December 08, 2008, 04:25:59 AM by epaalx »

Deozaan

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Re: Why Vista's DRM Is Bad For You and other jewels by Bruce Schneier
« Reply #5 on: December 08, 2008, 04:39:58 AM »
The linked article is from February 2007. Almost two years ago. Didn't we already hear about how bad DRM was then? What evidence have we seen of Vista DRM ruining stuff for people in the past two years?


justice

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Re: Why Vista's DRM Is Bad For You and other jewels by Bruce Schneier
« Reply #6 on: December 08, 2008, 04:42:08 AM »
[nevermind]

Josh

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Re: Why Vista's DRM Is Bad For You and other jewels by Bruce Schneier
« Reply #7 on: December 08, 2008, 04:55:50 AM »
Deozaan: I agree. I for one have not been affected either positively or negatively by "DRM" in vista. Everything I have attempted to play has played in vista provided I have the codec/software to play said file/media/disc. The only thing that has ever affected me was stuff built into a disc like securom and only once have I been affected by that and that was the SPORE game. I am all for fair use and equal rights when it comes to media, but I also support that the companies producing said content have a right to protect their product. The fact of the matter is that, even on this very forum, people admit they often times rip copies of stuff they obtain from netflix. I for one am proud of the fact that I have purchased every movie I own. Call me a "sheep" if you want, but I believe in supporting good art and almost every movie I own I would consider art. I often times find myself purchasing most movies that I see on netflix after I watch them as I feel a good portion of them are worth owning.

Ehtyar

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Re: Why Vista's DRM Is Bad For You and other jewels by Bruce Schneier
« Reply #8 on: December 08, 2008, 05:10:51 AM »
This kind of apathy is how Hollywood gained control of our computer systems in the first place. The less consumers care that they no longer control their own property, the less they will retain control.
Those of you suggesting that DRM is there for the purpose of protecting the content owned by the major movie studios perhaps ought to consider why Microsoft has not gone to the same extent to prevent software piracy.

Ehtyar.

Josh

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Re: Why Vista's DRM Is Bad For You and other jewels by Bruce Schneier
« Reply #9 on: December 08, 2008, 05:36:58 AM »
Ehtyar: I own my physical disc, I own the case it came in. I do not own the movie. The movie is licensed out, as has always been the case. The company places measures on the disc to ensure I do not attmept to rip and distribute it. In the society where a good majority of teenagers who are internet saavy feel that all media should be free, what is the industry to do? With the internet age comes a new method of pirating materials in a manner far easier than ever before. Now, I am not saying I do not pirate, but I have calmed down almost 300 fold compared to my earlier days because now, I can afford to purchase what I want. The companies have every right to protect THEIR property which is being licensed to us for private home viewing, not distribution by means other than what they wish.

Microsoft hasn't gone to the same extent? What is product activation, WGA, and the other methods microsoft is employing to protect it's products? It started with Windows 3.11 where you had to have a code to install it (Or was it Windows NT 4), granted you could use the famous ALL 1 code, but still they attempted to protect their software by requiring a key to install. And now they have inspired many major software companies to do the same.

f0dder

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Re: Why Vista's DRM Is Bad For You and other jewels by Bruce Schneier
« Reply #10 on: December 08, 2008, 06:38:05 AM »
I remember there was a thread about SuperBoyAC (iirc) not being being able to playback a DRM-protected movie he bought. Multiple DRM vendors have taken down DRM license servers in the past, leaving consumers with unplayable media files. DRM-protected files only work on media players that support DRM, and not all of them do. There used to be a lot of trouble finding a working mix of high-definition playback devices and HDTVs that would actually work, causing many people to curse HDCP (dunno if the issue is largely resolved now, though).

And at the same time, every single content-protection mechanism either has been broken or will be broken. Only the legitimate customers are hurt by this insane crippling shit, whereas the pirates just laugh and enjoy hassle-free media, games and programs.
- carpe noctem

Deozaan

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Re: Why Vista's DRM Is Bad For You and other jewels by Bruce Schneier
« Reply #11 on: December 08, 2008, 07:02:14 AM »
I'm not saying I'm in favor of DRM, which as f0dder said is or will be broken. What I'm talking about is that the article (from nearly two years ago) says Vista will cripple your ability to view media and recommends nobody upgrades to Vista ever. Yet in the past two years, where is the evidence that this is happening?

I've rented a movie from Netflix and tried to watch it on my computer (Windows XP) and it wouldn't play due to DRM. But that wasn't the fault of Microsoft/Windows. That was the fault of Sony for putting DRM on the DVD.

I am opposed to them trying to force us to buy certain hardware, but in the two years following that "scaremongering" article, I haven't heard/seen any evidence that Vista is doing that.

Ehtyar: What control does Hollywood have over my computer system? I genuinely want to know what you mean by that.


Darwin

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Re: Why Vista's DRM Is Bad For You and other jewels by Bruce Schneier
« Reply #12 on: December 08, 2008, 08:19:29 AM »
What Deozaan said... I've yet to encounter anything that has been disabled by Vista's built in DRM. Actually, the only issues that I've ever had with DRM have been with music files purchased from Puretracks years ago - I've upgraded hardward twice since then and somewhere along the way WMP's useless licencing backup system has been removed altogether. Thus, no chance of my ever playing THOSE files again  ;) Thank goodness for the ability to burn to disc and, more latterly, programs like Netburner and muvAudio. For DVDs there's always DVDFab or AnyDVD, but I don't tend to buy DVD's so am not so concerned.
"Some people have a way with words, other people,... oh... have not way" - Steve Martin

40hz

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Re: Why Vista's DRM Is Bad For You and other jewels by Bruce Schneier
« Reply #13 on: December 08, 2008, 10:03:32 AM »
It would be nice if the DRM licenses were not so one-sided. If you read them, they basically boil down to the following:

Quote

Plain Language DRM Terms:

1. We own everything, including the content you think you just purchased.

2. This is all about our granting our granting you permissions, not rights. We do not acknowledge that you have any rights in the matter.

3. You have purchased nothing more than a vaguely defined 'temporary permit' to use this content in such ways, and under such terms, as we alone shall dictate.

4. We may change any of our terms at any time, for any reason, or no reason at all.

5. We are not required to inform you of any changes we make to this agreement.

6. You are still bound to our most current terms of use regardless of whether or not you are aware that we have changed anything.

7. You agree that we may modify, or require you to accept changes to your system in any we we deem necessary to protect our interests.

8. You agree not to hold us liable for anything bad that happens to you as a result of anything we do - even if we knew about it in advance.

9. You agree to allow us to hold you fully responsible for anything bad that we feel has happened to us as a result of anything you do - even if it was unintentional.

10. You agree that we shouldn't be required to show you actually did something wrong before we initiate legal actions, or seek a judgment against you.

11. You agree you won't try to figure out how our software works, even if you need such knowledge to repair any problems we caused on your system.

12. You agree not to bad-mouth us to anybody, no matter what.

13. You agree never to sue us.

14. You DO agree, however, that we can still sue you.

15. It is an established fact that every sentient entity in this, and in every other, universe. intended to buy the product governed by these terms. Therefor, whoever accepts these terms also agrees to have UNLIMITED financial liability in the event of a lawsuit. You agree that your innocent enjoyment of the Blackout album may initiate a chain of events that could cost us "Beel-yons and Beel-yons" as Carl Sagan would have said. If that happens, we expect you to pay us that amount - even if Brittany's latest attempt at a comeback turns out to be a total bust, as expected.

16. You agree that our license terms trump all international conventions, laws, and legal precedents. The same rule applies to the laws found in the place where you live. If we decide to come after you for something, you agree to waive all the legal rights you have by way of citizenship or residency in any country, state, or locality. Furthermore, we get to pick the court of jurisdiction. (And you may rest assured we will find a judge that is sympathetic to our position - even if we have to go all the way to Marshall Texas to do it!)

17. These terms are not negotiable

18. If you don't agree to everything we say (now or in the future), your only recourse is to return our product to the place you bought it and try to get a refund.

19. Since they probably won't take it back because you opened it (otherwise how would you know you didn't agree with our terms) you can request a refund directly from us. However, we reserve the right to institute a set of conditions on returns that makes it virtually impossible for you to do so.

20. People that violate this agreement are hurting everybody. DRM is for your protection. Please help us by reporting any violations you may encounter on the part of others.

Sorry. I've been a musician for years, and much as I'd prefer people would buy my music, I still can't swallow what the "intellectual property" legal crowd is doing. People swipe stuff all the time. I've had my own stuff swiped as well. But even so, I can't see the benefit of treating everybody as either a criminal, or a potential criminal. It doesn't seem to be a workable or fair way to address the so-called problem.

Music is music. That's never been the problem. Trying to monetize it has been. And attempting to wring every last possible penny out of every single note is not only foolish, it's also impossible.

----------------------

epaalx - I'm curious. You seem to accept, as read, the whole industry position on DRM. Are you directly involved with any of this (i.e are you an attorney, musician, industry employee, etc.), or are you just sold on the argument the industry is making? :)


« Last Edit: December 08, 2008, 10:43:38 AM by 40hz »

Ehtyar

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Re: Why Vista's DRM Is Bad For You and other jewels by Bruce Schneier
« Reply #14 on: December 08, 2008, 01:21:14 PM »
Ehtyar: I own my physical disc, I own the case it came in. I do not own the movie. The movie is licensed out, as has always been the case. The company places measures on the disc to ensure I do not attmept to rip and distribute it. In the society where a good majority of teenagers who are internet saavy feel that all media should be free, what is the industry to do? With the internet age comes a new method of pirating materials in a manner far easier than ever before. Now, I am not saying I do not pirate, but I have calmed down almost 300 fold compared to my earlier days because now, I can afford to purchase what I want. The companies have every right to protect THEIR property which is being licensed to us for private home viewing, not distribution by means other than what they wish.

Microsoft hasn't gone to the same extent? What is product activation, WGA, and the other methods microsoft is employing to protect it's products? It started with Windows 3.11 where you had to have a code to install it (Or was it Windows NT 4), granted you could use the famous ALL 1 code, but still they attempted to protect their software by requiring a key to install. And now they have inspired many major software companies to do the same.
You also own your PC, which now thanks to MS and their OEMs, the movie studios control should you play one of their movies. How is everyone missing this part?
Microsoft's product activation applies only to their software, not to any third parties, as the DRM does exclusively.
I remember there was a thread about SuperBoyAC (iirc) not being being able to playback a DRM-protected movie he bought. Multiple DRM vendors have taken down DRM license servers in the past, leaving consumers with unplayable media files. DRM-protected files only work on media players that support DRM, and not all of them do. There used to be a lot of trouble finding a working mix of high-definition playback devices and HDTVs that would actually work, causing many people to curse HDCP (dunno if the issue is largely resolved now, though).

And at the same time, every single content-protection mechanism either has been broken or will be broken. Only the legitimate customers are hurt by this insane crippling shit, whereas the pirates just laugh and enjoy hassle-free media, games and programs.
Well said as usual f0d man.
http://au.youtube.co.../watch?v=j-uulRB1OmY

Ehtyar.
« Last Edit: December 08, 2008, 01:29:40 PM by Ehtyar »

f0dder

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Re: Why Vista's DRM Is Bad For You and other jewels by Bruce Schneier
« Reply #15 on: December 08, 2008, 01:49:23 PM »
Well said as usual f0d man.
http://au.youtube.co.../watch?v=j-uulRB1OmY
That was a pretty funny video - that guy is pretty pissed off. And no wonder.

Finding a no-cd crack has always been one of the first things I've done when I've purchased a new game. I've always thought it to be ludicrous requiring the CD/DVD to be in drive even after all data files have been copied to my harddisk. In the case of Unreal Tournament (iirc), getting rid of the copy protection even caused the game to start around 50-60 seconds faster (yeah, I had a crappy CD drive back then - that, combined with the cd-standard violating copy protection tricks caused quite a slowdown).

In later years, it turned from mere nuisance to "I have to do this in order to be able to play certain games" - either because I had daemon-tools running (when you have a fileserver for storing ISOs, you don't really feel like mucking around with optical discs), or because the game copy protection was buggy or just incompatible with 64-bit windows. Once copy protection is removed, the games tended to work pretty well.

I'm pretty fed up most game titles nowadays. Gameplay usually sucks, system demands are too high, and many games are unstable as hell (and no, this is not because of cracks - checking game forums clearly reveals this). Every once in a while, true gems are released though - like World Of Goo or Left 4 Dead. Both titles that don't have over-the-top copy protection (infact, WoG has none!) and are worth every penny.

DRM sucks. Any form.

Ah yes, I should add that one of my brothers has just purchased the newest Need For Speed, and it doesn't work on his box. He's running a pretty bog-standard 32bit XP, so it's not like it's a 64bit incompatibility or anything. I guess I'll have to go hunt for a crack for him to make the shit actually work.
- carpe noctem
« Last Edit: December 08, 2008, 01:51:17 PM by f0dder »

Ehtyar

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Re: Why Vista's DRM Is Bad For You and other jewels by Bruce Schneier
« Reply #16 on: December 08, 2008, 01:58:29 PM »
Actually, I forgot to credit Scan Man for that vid, thanks scancode :)

Ehtyar.

Darwin

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Re: Why Vista's DRM Is Bad For You and other jewels by Bruce Schneier
« Reply #17 on: December 08, 2008, 02:04:26 PM »
 ;D That video was funny - very colourful vocabulary - I learned at least one new idiom...
"Some people have a way with words, other people,... oh... have not way" - Steve Martin

Josh

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Re: Why Vista's DRM Is Bad For You and other jewels by Bruce Schneier
« Reply #18 on: December 08, 2008, 02:22:43 PM »
I still fail to see how the movie studio controls my PC? I use AnyDVD which removes any and all nasties from the DVD and even without that, playing a DVD/BRD takes absolutely no effort at all. Am I missing something here? Would you tell me that the movie industry controlled my VCR because of Macrovision protection built into every VHS tape? This just sounds like a bunch of paranoid hooey to me as again, I have yet to experience any issues with DRM up to this day.

40hz

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Re: Why Vista's DRM Is Bad For You and other jewels by Bruce Schneier
« Reply #19 on: December 08, 2008, 03:43:29 PM »
I still fail to see how the movie studio controls my PC? I use AnyDVD which removes any and all nasties from the DVD and even without that, playing a DVD/BRD takes absolutely no effort at all. Am I missing something here?

Did you mean 'something' other than the fact you're probably in violation of US law by doing so? ;D

Edvard

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Re: Why Vista's DRM Is Bad For You and other jewels by Bruce Schneier
« Reply #20 on: December 08, 2008, 05:29:29 PM »
That video was funny - very colourful vocabulary - I learned at least one new idiom...

"This video has been removed due to terms of use violation."

 :huh:

Ehtyar

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Re: Why Vista's DRM Is Bad For You and other jewels by Bruce Schneier
« Reply #21 on: December 08, 2008, 05:34:25 PM »
Did you mean 'something' other than the fact you're probably in violation of US law by doing so? ;D
I thought we were discussing the limitations placed on playback of hidef audio/video use with "unsafe" hardware. Having re-read the thread, I see that is not the case, my bad.
Josh I find it odd that after all that's been said in this thread you're now admitting you strip the copy protection from DVDs. It seems you're in support of a system you feel you shouldn't be subject to.

Ehtyar.

Ehtyar

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Re: Why Vista's DRM Is Bad For You and other jewels by Bruce Schneier
« Reply #22 on: December 08, 2008, 05:48:01 PM »
Here it is hosted by a service not run by a bunch of tools.
I saved the hi-def version as I expected this to happen, if anyone wants it let me know and I'll upload it when I get home tonight.

Ehtyar.

Darwin

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Re: Why Vista's DRM Is Bad For You and other jewels by Bruce Schneier
« Reply #23 on: December 08, 2008, 07:30:24 PM »
Here it is hosted by a service not run by a bunch of tools.
I saved the hi-def version as I expected this to happen, if anyone wants it let me know and I'll upload it when I get home tonight.

Ehtyar.

"Some people have a way with words, other people,... oh... have not way" - Steve Martin

steeladept

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Re: Why Vista's DRM Is Bad For You and other jewels by Bruce Schneier
« Reply #24 on: December 08, 2008, 10:38:20 PM »
I still fail to see how the movie studio controls my PC? I use AnyDVD which removes any and all nasties from the DVD and even without that, playing a DVD/BRD takes absolutely no effort at all. Am I missing something here?

Did you mean 'something' other than the fact you're probably in violation of US law by doing so? ;D
Don't forget in violation of the right privilege of use clauses.

In other words, that makes you a criminal in the eyes of RIAA/Distributor of any DVD you use this way - despite your purchase.

Sounds like they control your use of your PC after all, well assuming you are meticulously sticking to the letter of the law (and their "agreement" with you).