Digital Rights Management Explained
September 1, 2005
I had a long conversation with a friend last week, explaining how “buying” music from iTunes Music Store basically wasn’t “buying” it at all…
The fact is that most people just don’t realize how little they actually get for their money when they purchase DRM’d music (or other materials.)
Fortunately, the EFF has just come out with a dandy little guide explaining in simple terms what you’re not getting for your money:
In other words, in this brave new world of “authorized music services,” law-abiding music fans often get less for their money than they did in the old world of CDs (or at least, the world before record companies started crippling CDs with DRM, too). Unfortunately, in an effort to attract customers, these music services try to obscure the restrictions they impose on you with clever marketing.
This guide “translates” the marketing messages by the major services, giving you the real deal rather than spin. Understanding how DRM and the DMCA pose a danger to your rights will help you to make fully informed purchasing decisions. Before buying DRM-crippled music from any service, you should consider the following examples and be sure to understand how the service might limit your ability to make lawful use of the music you purchase.