Wednesday, February 7, 2007

Steve Jobs says DRM is wrong...

I say fix your bloody software first. Christ, isn't Itunes one of the largest music based stores that sells DRM'ed low quality audio files? Get your house in order first before lecturing others with your reality distortion spin.

Didn't France proposed a law last year that companies like Apple must allow interoperability within different players? Did anyone remember what Apple replied? I did. Apple effectively accused France's proposal to allow people to break DRM as 'state-sponsored piracy'. I seem to also remember RealNetwork's attempt to break Apple's Fairplay protection, which was greeted with scornful faces by Apple, Inc. and their fanboys who wanted to protect the Itunes-Ipod monopoly.

Not that I care though (since I do not use either), but imagine consumers being told that their legally purchased music cannot be used on another player. DRM is bad as far as music distribution goes. People will either continue purchasing CDs (which are dirt cheap now, even cheaper than buying lower quality audio date through Itunes) or pirating them.

via BBC

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se7en said...

I don't own iPod but I do think Steve made great sense with his simple yet very smart open letter.

Apple may have adopted a different position last year, but it is now the first (and only) company (who has vested interest in DRM) who suggests that we move on, you should learn how to, too.

Jon said...

I have been getting a lot of comments mainly by ADFs. All of which are anonymous.

A couple of people pointed out that DRM is forced to Apple through the recording industry. Fine. That I admit is true. The same can be said about Napster. However even I admit that a world without DRM through digital distribution is far-off, but we still can only hope. Like it or not, Apple is still the largest brand when it comes to digital audio distribution.

And what they can do is to lead the way by making music being bought through Itunes compatible with other products. Isn't that what Stevie said? About the freedom of what customers can do with the products that they have? But Apple as a corporate entity seems reluctant to do so. Yeah, maybe it is the recording industry pressuring Apple, but if there are labels out there who would allow music stores to sell their tracks on more 'open' DRM system or even DRM-less audio data, then why couldn't Apple flex its muscle a little bit? As far as I know Itunes hasn't been a real success, so why is it that the Itunes business model still relevant to Apple. Cut it off, save a bundle, and at least try to develop proper innovation on your products for once and not call existing technology 'revolutionary', all because of Steve's RDF.

A couple of comments somehow painted me as a Microsoft fanboy. What has got a blog post about Steve Jobs got to do with Microsoft? Nothing. But it seems many Apple fanboys still think that this is 1995. Hell if I were a MS fanboy I would be running Vista now (nope), owning an Xbox 360 (nope, not even the original) etc.

Jon said...


The problem with Steve's proposal (and Bill Gates' comment on DRM being too complicated for end-users, which he made almost two months ago) is both companies are offering products and services that are being tied down by DRM.

In lecturing people on the pitfalls of DRM, both Steve and Bill came of as hypocritical. Steve wasn't the first who suggested that we move on from DRM.

TriangleJuice said...

(...) isn't Itunes one of the largest music based?

Uh... no!
Actually, 128kbps AAC files are equal to a perfectly ripped 160kbps mp3 file, so you won't hear the difference.

As for Apple's answer to France: considering that the "Big Four" consider it 'state-sponsored piracy', Apple has to consider it 'state-sponsored piracy' too. The fact that they WANT to distribute DRM-free music, doesn't mean they CAN. Remember: this is just Steve Jobs' opinion, not a given fact.

Jon said...

I am sorry but 160kbps MP3 files doesn't cut it (for me), especially when you can walk into most discount stores (or online stores) and buy the CD for roughly same price or even cheaper (assuming you want the whole album of course).

Start selling them in 320kbps LAME MP3/OggVorbis format, then maybe I will start paying attention.

Yes I am also aware that recording labels such as Sony and Warner are to be blamed (as well as the RIAA), but that doesn't mean Apple isn't (partly) responsible. If eMusic can have a successful business model selling DRM-less music (without the major labels on board) then Apple can. At the very least give options to people who want to transfer their Itunes bought files to other non-Apple branded players, without the crude burn-to-CD-then-rip-back-to-MP3 method.

Anonymous said...

Applebots are well known for their blind brand loyalty so do not be surprise by personal attacks.

For Steve Jobs to come out and say that he is against DRM and yet his company was the first to got into bed with the RIAA and still uses DRM to lock out competiton is pure hypocrisy. The iTune$/iPod lock-out has made him a very rich man, but man have I ever seen a guy who suffers from God's complex more than Jobs.

Apple, the new Microsoft.