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Aristotle (5147)


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Journal of Aristotle (5147)

Tuesday February 06, 2007
09:46 PM

Steve Jobs calls for the abolishment of DRM

[ #32332 ]

Steve Jobs :

Imagine a world where every online store sells DRM-free music encoded in open licensable formats. In such a world, any player can play music purchased from any store, and any store can sell music which is playable on all players. This is clearly the best alternative for consumers, and Apple would embrace it in a heartbeat. If the big four music companies would license Apple their music without the requirement that it be protected with a DRM, we would switch to selling only DRM-free music on our iTunes store.

However, the most intetersting part to me was this:

A key provision of our agreements with the music companies [to keep FairPlay’s imposed limitations so liberal —Ed.] is that if our DRM system is compromised and their music becomes playable on unauthorized devices, we have only a small number of weeks to fix the problem or they can withdraw their entire music catalog from our iTunes store.

Oh, you can just imagine how hard and fast they played to get the music industry to that point.

Also interesting is his peculiar use of “DRM” as a countable noun (“using a DRM”, “DRMs haven’t worked”).

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  • is the failure of iTMS. By all accounts, iTMS accounts for only a tiny percentage of music on iPods.

    I remember when Microsoft was aggressively trying to grow their office software market in the '80s. One of the big advantages they had over many of the competitors is that none of their software had any DRM-like features. No license checks, never a dongle (remember those) needed. Quick and easy to (re)install and backup. Easy to try, easy to use. Sure, people pirated their stuff, but every pirated copy

    • The RIAA will fold eventually anyway. The labels are basically cartells, extorting both the consumers and the artists by controlling the distribution channel. No wonder they’re paranoid about their grip on it. But the internet has long made the whole charade obsolete; to quote Bram Cohen:

      The content people have no clue. I mean, no clue. The cost of bandwidth is going down to nothing. And the size of hard drives is getting so big, and they’re so cheap, that pretty soon you’ll have every s

      • OK, calling iTMS a failure might be a little strong. However, I don't think it's getting the growth that they thought it would.

        But, that's not Apple's fault. I think they are charging too much for DRMd music. I wouldn't consider buying anything from iTMS myself. I have an iPod, I listen the heck out of it, I've got most of my CD collection and tons of good podcasts on it. I won't buy music that I might have to repurchase later, nope, wouldn't consider it even a second. If I like something, I'll get th

        • Oh, I agree completely. I might in fact buy stuff from the iTMS, even with FairPlay DRM, but it would have to be in a lossless format, because my first order of business would then be to burn it in order to get rid of the container, and then re-rip it for listening. And I won’t accept the degradation of re-ripping what was already in a lossy format (lossy formats are OK with me, but only as the terminal stop).

    • The first to provide a good service without DRM will attract so many more customers than the alternatives.

      There is already a service that does this - []. I'm suspecting that the only reason they are able to is because it's all independent artists not associated with the RIAA. From what I understand they are doing very well, but nothing like iTMS since it's not the most popular music.

  • He has the power to remove the DRM from all of the Disney movies they sell. Why not do that first there Stevo since DRM is so bad, rather than lip servicing just the RIAA. Put your Disney control where your mouth is and take the first step.