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DRM Gone Wild

May 8, 2010 15:26:18.531

And you thought you owned your own equipment:

Hollywood will soon have the power to remotely disable the analog outputs on your set-top box, under a decision by federal regulators on Friday intended to prevent home recording of new movie releases.

This is supposedly to allow releases of movies to cable while they are still in theaters, but - you know they won't stop there. Also, this is the FCC, so I have a question for all of you net neutrality fanboys: exactly why do you want to put internet rules under the FCC? What makes you think that you'll get responsible management with this sort of thing happening? Yes, I mean people like David Weinberger, who are practically salivating at the prospect of FCC rules over the net.

If that does happen, I expect a "shocked" reaction when the net becomes a shadow of its former self. For the children and copyright holders, of course.

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posted by James Robertson


Re: DRM Gone Wild

[W^L+] May 8, 2010 15:53:42.041

Regulatory capture is a well-known issue with centralized regulation. No one really wants the FCC to regulate the net. Only to break corporate monopoly power--the same power that could block you from using Skype or Gizmo5 or MagicJack on a connection you pay for, just so you'd be forced to use the line owner's own competing service.

The only sensible solution is to return to a modified 'common carrier' model, where a line owner must sell access to multiple ISPs (including it's own) on equal terms and cannot interfere in any way with traffic going through the wire.

Arm's length transactions and competing service providers will get us most of the benefits of net neutrality (as seen in many of the 30+ nations with faster net speeds than ours) without making a powerful bureaucracy to stop progress.

Having a Libertarian bent should not imply giving corporations more control of our lives. Whether government or corporate, we should seek to limit the amount of control big organizations can exercise. While I currently believe that my ISP is fairly accomodating, it may not stay that way in the absence of a "share the lines" mandate, the very one that was in place until a bad decision by the FCC.

Re: DRM Gone Wild

[james Robertson] May 8, 2010 16:48:58.134

While I understand your point about corporate abuse, I fear that a whole lot less. Why? Witness IBM and Microsoft. It wasn't the Feds that brought them to heel; it was the sluggishness of an aging corporate culture. Companies have a life cycle; governments last until a disaster. Of the two, I figure I have far less to fear from corporations.

Re: DRM Gone Wild

[HKN] May 10, 2010 4:12:47.643

your assumption is: corporate <> government ...

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