10.06.2006 08:00 AM
Global “Day Against DRM” protests copy protection

On the opposite side of recent statements by NBC Universal chairman Robert Wright denouncing software and media piracy, protesters against DRM (digital rights management) took to the streets last week in an effort to protect fair-use rights for consumers in the digital era.

Designated a “Day Against DRM,” the theme of the global protest was that corporate-imposed DRM is robbing consumers of their rights under current laws. Groups handed out leaflets in American and European cities, including Boston; Zurich, Switzerland; Paris; and London. A similar awareness campaign was launched on the Internet.

DRM is a device used to restrict the copying of music, movies and other digital media, which is purchased legally by consumers. The protesters referred to it as “Digital Restrictions Management.”

Defective By Design, a group associated with the Free Software Foundation, organized the protests. In addition to violating consumer rights, the group said DRM was also a threat to the open-source software movement, and could be used to control and track consumer viewing habits of the new HD-DVD formats.

One prominent target of the protests was Apple Computer’s iTunes, a music download service that sells copy-protected songs that play only on Apple’s iPod music players.

According to the executive director of the Free Software Foundation Peter Brown, the protests are not focused primarily on Apple, but focused more on the company because it popularizes that DRM is acceptable. The protesters argued against any use of DRM by the entertainment industry.

Supporting the concerns of the protesters, the British Library said last week that it found that of 30 licensing agreements recently offered to the library for use of digital material, 28 were more restrictive than the rights existing under current copyright law. The concern is that, if unchecked, this trend will drastically reduce public access, thus significantly undermining the strength and vitality of our creative and educational sectors, Chief Executive Lynne Brindley said in a statement.

Post New Comment
If you are already a member, or would like to receive email alerts as new comments are
made, please login or register.

Enter the code shown above:

(Note: If you cannot read the numbers in the above
image, reload the page to generate a new one.)

No Comments Found

Tuesday 03:07 PM
WMUR-TV Says FAA Drone Rules Preclude ENG
The FAA’s current rules and proposed ban on flight over people, requirement of visual line of sight and restriction on nighttime flying, effectively prohibit broadcasters from using UAS for newsgathering. ~ WMUR-TV General Manager Jeff Bartlett

D. Pagan Communications /   Friday 10:35 AM
Blue Line is Hot on the Trail of DPA Microphones
Clyne Media, Inc /   Thursday 09:51 PM
Focusrite Expands RedNet Range

Featured Articles
Discover TV Technology