It’s pretty apparent by now that Daryl isn’t buying my arguments on why DRM is a bad idea so perhaps it’s time to let someone else do the arguing. Say, the folks at the Cato Institute? Daryl keeps hyping about how great a totally free market would be and the folks at the very Conservative Cato Institute are big on that idea as well so obviously Daryl should have a lot in agreement with them, right?
Eh… not really:
The courts have a proven track record of fashioning balanced remedies for the copyright challenges created by new technologies. But when Congress passed the Digital Millennium Copyright Act in 1998, it cut the courts out of this role and instead banned any devices that “circumvent” digital rights management (DRM) technologies, which control access to copyrighted content.
The result has been a legal regime that reduces options and competition in how consumers enjoy media and entertainment. Today, the copyright industry is exerting increasing control over playback devices, cable media offerings, and even Internet streaming. Some firms have used the DMCA to thwart competition by preventing research and reverse engineering. Others have brought the weight of criminal sanctions to bear against critics, competitors, and researchers.
The DMCA is anti-competitive. It gives copyright holders—and the technology companies that distribute their content—the legal power to create closed technology platforms and exclude competitors from interoperating with them. Worst of all, DRM technologies are clumsy and ineffective; they inconvenience legitimate users but do little to stop pirates.
Holy shit! Could it be? The Cato Institute is saying more or less exactly the same thing this crazy liberal has said? Surely it’s a sign of the Apocolypse! Hey Mikey, they fucking hate it! Conservative, libertarian, free-market types that they are, they hate DRM and they think it’s a bad thing that should be avoided. Imagine that!
You can read the full white paper by going to their website. Perhaps Daryl will see the light now that some of his fellow free-market types have come out opposed to DRM, but I’m not going to hold my breath waiting for that to happen.