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posted by mattie_p on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:30AM   Printer-friendly
from the if-you-can't-beat-'em dept.

An anonymous coward writes:

"In March, 2013 Tim Berners-Lee, the inventor of the World Wide Web, proposed adopting DRM into the HTML standard, under the name Encrypted Media Extensions (EME). Writing in October 2013, he said that "none of us as users like certain forms of content protection such as DRM at all," but cites the argument that "if content protection of some kind has to be used for videos, it is better for it to be discussed in the open at W3C" as a reason for considering the inclusion of DRM in HTML.

The Electronic Frontier Foundation has objected, saying in May of last year that the plan 'defines a new "black box" for the entertainment industry, fenced off from control by the browser and end-user'. Later, they pointed out that if DRM is OK for video content, that same principle would open the door to font, web applications, and other data being locked away from users.

public-restrictedmedia, the mailing list where the issue is being debated, has seen discussion about forking HTML and establishing a new standard outside of the W3C."

 
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  • (Score: 2, Funny) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:36AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:36AM (#1301)

    He says he invented the internet? I thought that was Al Gore.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:39AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:39AM (#1304)

      The Internet is more than just WWW.

      Al Gore invented The Internet. Tim Berners-Lee "only" invented WWW.

      • (Score: 1) by dilbert on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:07PM

        by dilbert (444) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:07PM (#1638)
        Senator Ted Stevens should tell them to "shove it up their series of tubes!"
  • (Score: 5, Informative) by romanr on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:39AM

    by romanr (102) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:39AM (#1303)

    There has been quite a bit of discussion about this topic, for example here: http://yro.slashdot.org/story/13/10/03/159238/tim- berners-lee-w3c-approve-work-on-drm-for-html-51 [slashdot.org] . I'm not sure, if this story is enough groundbreaking for the front page.

    • (Score: 3, Insightful) by clone141166 on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:03AM

      by clone141166 (59) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:03AM (#1327)

      When I first saw the headline I thought the same thing, but given the context of SoylentNews (nerd news) it seems like an important issue anyway. While it might be old news, the article is well written/edited imho, and provides a number of links that sum up everything that has happened so far with the story.

    • (Score: 2, Interesting) by crutchy on Tuesday February 18 2014, @06:58AM

      by crutchy (179) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @06:58AM (#1450) Homepage Journal

      if they fork the html standard it will become big news

      i mentioned this on slashdot when it came up, but a lot of people seem to direct their hatred of drm at the concept of a drm standard, which i think it wrong.
      we already have drm... there is nothing we can do to stop that.
      the only variable is what form that drm takes and what software is required to use drm-protected content.
      currently drm is a mish mash of various proprietary systems... so depending on where you access content from you may need multiple programs to access drm protected content.
      i think the concept of a common standard for online drm isn't a bad idea if you can access drm protected content from various sources with just your web browser. it's also likely to me more reliable and less restrictive than a proprietary system that some corporation like sony or microsoft controls.
      those that think having a standard for drm will make it more prevailent should take a look at the trend that's occurring regardless... the only question is what direction this trend should take... various closed proprietary standards or a single open w3c standard

      • (Score: 5, Insightful) by TheRaven on Tuesday February 18 2014, @09:12AM

        by TheRaven (270) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @09:12AM (#1491) Journal

        Long-term, one of the best ways of fighting DRM is to make it expensive and make the monopolies end up in the wrong place. DRM was killed on music by Apple. They ended up with a near monopoly on online music distribution, and the cartels that owned the copyright saw a choice between DRM or keeping control over their channel. With the status quo, we're likely to see the same thing for video, with Netflix instead of Apple: the studios have to either license their content for DRM-free distribution, or let Netflix completely own the distribution channel. Why? Because every existing device can play DRM-free H.264 content, just as every existing music player when the iPad was dominant (including the iPad) could play DRM-free MP3s.

        The record labels wanted to recreate competition in the retail market, and the only way of doing this was to allow anyone (except, for a little while, Apple, so the competition had some first-move advantage) to license their content for DRM-free distribution. That meant that they didn't have to create custom players (software or hardware) and the playback devices became competitive commodities (hundreds of Chinese companies would compete to make the cheapest MP3 player and let the labels keep the profitable bit of the business).

        The same will happen with video. Eventually, the studios will realise that DRM doesn't give control to the copyright holder it gives control to the retailer, and that they are the ones that are insisting on DRM, but they are not the ones benefiting from it.

        --
        sudo mod me up
        • (Score: 0) by crutchy on Tuesday February 18 2014, @10:28AM

          by crutchy (179) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @10:28AM (#1511) Homepage Journal

          i agree

          fortunately, a w3c standard for drm won't hinder efforts to kill drm... it's just a standard

      • (Score: 5, Insightful) by pe1rxq on Tuesday February 18 2014, @11:38AM

        by pe1rxq (844) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @11:38AM (#1541) Homepage

        The best way to keep DRM away is to not make a standard.
        Currently it is a real pain to deliver content with DRM. If there was a standard way and it was implemented on enough systems it would be very easy for a content provider to start using it. There is no additionall cost to the provider.
        A standard does not offer anything to the user, so why would I want to install a browser which makes it easier for content providers to screw me?

        • (Score: 0) by crutchy on Tuesday February 18 2014, @12:11PM

          by crutchy (179) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @12:11PM (#1551) Homepage Journal

          with proprietary drm you're screwed even more

          i see your point about it being more difficult to implement drm without a standard, but unfortunately it's happening anyway, so despite the difficulty the benefits must still outweigh the costs, and proprietary drm providers will lock consumers into their own little drm ecosystems where basically it's their way or the highway

          not saying drm would be any better under a w3c standard (it would still suck) but if i'm going to eventually have drm shoved down my throat (and i expect it will eventually happen regardless) i would rather it be through my favourite browser than being forced not only to endure drm, but to endure it through proprietary ecosystems like silverlight or flash

          there's no doubt that drm is a stinky turd, but we need to think about how to make the inevitable impending stink just a little more tolerable

          i also think that user disdain and market competition will keep the use of drm under some level of control; as long as there are options for the consumer, content providers will necessarily have to be wary about the potential backlash and exodus from their services

          • (Score: 2, Insightful) by mcgrew on Tuesday February 18 2014, @05:08PM

            by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Tuesday February 18 2014, @05:08PM (#1708) Homepage Journal

            With DRM NOT a standard I don't have to deal with it at all; I simply refuse to have anything to do with anything having to do with DRM. If it were a web standard I would have to deal with it.

            I DON'T NEED "content." Hell, I create content. But I refuse to buy content, I buy physical, non-DRM media that contains content. If I pay my money I want what I pay for to be MINE.

            --
            mcgrewbooks.com mcgrew.info nooze.org
            • (Score: 0) by crutchy on Tuesday February 18 2014, @09:00PM

              by crutchy (179) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @09:00PM (#1905) Homepage Journal

              I DON'T NEED "content." Hell, I create content

              so you eventually going to write all your own books, music, movies, websites, etc. whilst the rest of the world moves on (one way or another)? good luck with that

              If I pay my money I want what I pay for to be MINE

              i don't think you've grasped the concept of copyright... if something is copyrighted by someone else, you don't legally own it regardless of how much you paid or how it is physically/digitally/otherwise protected

              • (Score: 1) by mcgrew on Wednesday February 19 2014, @01:34AM

                by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Wednesday February 19 2014, @01:34AM (#2072) Homepage Journal

                I already write books, music, and, websites*. And I used to write computer programs, too (Two were registered with the copyright office and the most common remark was "how the hell did you get that little computer to do THAT?). Before CSS was cracked I got movies from TPB simply because the pirate version is superior to watching from DVD - hit "play" and the movie starts without any unskippable shit like trailers and piracy warnings. Now that we have CSS I buy DVDs. When Blu-Ray is cracked I'll get a Blu-Ray player.

                And free, unencumbered content is not going away. Baen Books has tons of science fiction, all free for the reading at their website. Doctorow puts his books on BoingBoing for free. Star Wreck - In The Pirkinning is better done than a lot of movies I've paid for and is funny as hell.

                Just as there is open source software, there are "open source" books.

                You want music? Go to archive.org, there's some great indie stuff there. DRM is for giant corporations, not people. Fight the monster, buy books from Baen. Get RIAA music and hollywood films and printed books at your local library if your city doesn't suck.

                DRM will only take over if we accept it. I refuse to.

                i don't think you've grasped the concept of copyright... if something is copyrighted by someone else, you don't legally own it regardless of how much you paid or how it is physically/digitally/otherwise protected

                Indeed, when you buy Foundation you're not buying a novel, you're buying a BOOK. You own the physical object and the publisher can't take it back or restrict you in any way. You can sell it, give it away, use the pages for toilet paper, whatever you want. Same with a DVD or any other physical media - you can do anything you want legally, except publish copies. Unencumbered media can be backed up legally, DRMed content cannot.

                That is as it always was. Paid for downloaded media? You own nothing. They can take it away or restrict it any way they want, with no legal restrictions against them doing it. I own one copy of Foundation, and am free to do anyhing except republish, which is as it should be. It is physical property, I OWN it. They cannot take back real books or CDs, they can with DRMed downloads. Fools "buy" DRMed content.

                And don't forget, the concept of DRM was defeated before and will again. Back in the late '80s and early '90s DRM boycotts put publishers out of business and it died for a decade before the RIAA resurrected it, and DRM on MP3s died. The same will happen with books and movies.

                DRM IS EVIL. Don't accept evil.

                * See the journal I posted here today, it's a fifteen year old rerun of some of my old content, with a little new thrown in. It was a popular site in its day.

                --
                mcgrewbooks.com mcgrew.info nooze.org
      • (Score: 1) by mcgrew on Tuesday February 18 2014, @04:30PM

        by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Tuesday February 18 2014, @04:30PM (#1685) Homepage Journal

        we already have drm

        We? Speak for yourself, I refuse all DRM. I used VCRs until deCSS came along (cracked DRM is hardly DRM), still have no Blu-Ray player because I REFUSE TO BUY ANYTHING DRM. Period.

        YOU have DRM. WE don't.

        --
        mcgrewbooks.com mcgrew.info nooze.org
        • (Score: 0) by crutchy on Tuesday February 18 2014, @08:56PM

          by crutchy (179) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @08:56PM (#1903) Homepage Journal

          "we"... meaning anyone with an ipod, ipad, iphone, etc that use itunes, and people who have blueray, etc.
          if you really think the number of people who deal with drm doesn't constitute "we" then you need to get out more.
          if you don't use anything drm, that's fine. if you think you'll never have to... well you're saying that you'll eventually never download any copyright content. if you're an old fart i wouldn't be surprised if you also said once that you'll never visit a website with advertising on it.

          • (Score: 1) by mcgrew on Wednesday February 19 2014, @01:36AM

            by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Wednesday February 19 2014, @01:36AM (#2073) Homepage Journal

            I am not part of your "we" and I posit that there are probably quite a few others here who also don't fit your "we". And I don't use iTunes but aren't the MP3s unencumbered with DRM?

            --
            mcgrewbooks.com mcgrew.info nooze.org
  • (Score: -1, Troll) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:40AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:40AM (#1305)

    ehhhhhhh

    • (Score: 3, Informative) by mattie_p on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:45AM

      by mattie_p (13) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:45AM (#1308) Journal

      Thanks, I've fixed it now. I appreciate the feedback!

      • (Score: 3, Insightful) by similar_name on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:27AM

        by similar_name (71) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:27AM (#1354)

        Posting from lynx

        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:40AM

          by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:40AM (#1363)

          Pfft, some of us use Mosaic still ..

        • (Score: 1) by mrclisdue on Tuesday February 18 2014, @06:45AM

          by mrclisdue (680) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @06:45AM (#1449)

          Posting from lynx

          And I'm reading your lynx post in Firefox! How nifty is this peoplefood sight? Truly cross-platform and everything! Chuck Feta, dude; and the slashcode is extended another week, or something like that.

          cheers,

  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by clone141166 on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:44AM

    by clone141166 (59) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:44AM (#1306)

    I don't think DRM in any form is a good idea. I think the problem with it being standardised is twofold; firstly it appears like the W3C is promoting/in favour of the widespread use of DRM (I realise this probably isn't the case, but it can be construed that way), and secondly it reduces the technical barrier for those who DO want to implement DRM systems.

    I don't see how restricting content through the promotion of DRM can possibly "lead the Web to its full potential", which is supposed to be the W3C's "mission".

    • (Score: 4, Insightful) by Non Sequor on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:08AM

      by Non Sequor (1005) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:08AM (#1333) Journal

      IANAWD.

      I believe the issue is that the current state of affairs is that DRM is handled by Flash or Silverlight. My spectator's eye view says that most of the HTML standards work over the past few years has been trying to claw back things that have been handed over to Flash.

      So this brings up the question of whether you really want to claw back DRM. If the answer is no, then DRM is going to stay in Flash-world, and I'm guessing that things tangentially associated with video playback (controls, etc.) will also be segregated to Flash-land. If the answer is yes, then getting everything into HTML-land may be possible.

      Once again IANAWD, so I can't really tell to what extent the current state of affairs is problematic.

      --
      Write your congressman. Tell him he sucks.
      • (Score: 1) by Statecraftsman on Tuesday February 18 2014, @05:16AM

        by Statecraftsman (1149) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @05:16AM (#1417)

        I'm going to say yes to clawing everything into free software but no to DRM. Whatever time it takes to circumvent DRM (and there'll always be a way) will not be worth it for the vast majority of people. So just make it easy and charge people. If that doesn't work I question the value of your work in the first place.

        • (Score: 0) by crutchy on Tuesday February 18 2014, @07:03AM

          by crutchy (179) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @07:03AM (#1452) Homepage Journal

          the issue isn't about drm or no drm... you will get drm forced on you regardless of what the w3c does... do you like silverlight, or would you prefer something built into firefox? if you hate silverlight and flash, you should support the idea of a w3c standard

          • (Score: 5, Insightful) by TheRaven on Tuesday February 18 2014, @09:15AM

            by TheRaven (270) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @09:15AM (#1493) Journal
            Why? The reason I don't like Silverlight of Flash is that it requires some proprietary (and OS-dependent) code to run on my machine, that has had no security auditing and a terrible track record for exploits. A DRM standard would require some proprietary (and OS-dependent) code to run on my machine in much the same way. DRM relies on obscurity, so there are only two ways of implementing it: obfuscated binaries or hardware support for storing keys and running software that even the OS can't look inside. I don't want either of those. I'd much rather say to the companies pushing DRM 'I'm the customer, I'm not giving you any money and I won't as long as you push DRM. Give me DRM-free content and I'll happily hand over money'.
            --
            sudo mod me up
            • (Score: 0) by crutchy on Tuesday February 18 2014, @10:26AM

              by crutchy (179) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @10:26AM (#1509) Homepage Journal

              some proprietary (and OS-dependent) code to run on my machine, that has had no security auditing and a terrible track record for exploits... DRM relies on obscurity

              with closed source proprietary drm that's true, but it may not have to be that way... it could use something like encrypted handshaking or something (there are no doubt much more creative folk working on projects like openssl that could respond more intelligently regarding more open alternatives to these concerns).

              I'd much rather say to the companies pushing DRM 'I'm the customer, I'm not giving you any money and I won't as long as you push DRM

              Give me DRM-free content and I'll happily hand over money

              no offense but to companies like sony you're one dead fish in a sea of ignorant live ones... no matter how many of your friends join you

              i'm not for a moment saying i disagree... i hate drm too, but i understand that standards are useful for taking some control away from monopolistic corporations and giving it to more open and representative bodies (like the w3c)

              unfortunately if you're against a drm standard by the w3c then you're kinda (whether you like it or not) by default advocating things like flash and silverlight, because there will always be drm. this discussion is merely about the form it takes.

              • (Score: 1) by githaron on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:43PM

                by githaron (581) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:43PM (#1618)

                OpenSSL and other encryption projects work as open source because they are only trying to hide information from unauthorized users, not everyone but the sender. In other words, if Alice is talking to Bob, Bob and understands the conversation but Eve just hears a gambled mess.

                With DRM, it is the equivalent of Alice talking into a box, giving the box to Bob. Bob has to hold the box up to his ear and push the button to hear the message. He tries to do anything unauthorized, the box will try to detect it and not play the message. The only thing that is keeping Bob from hacking the box to get it to do what he wants is the box's undocumented complexity. Being box-savvy, Bob knows that there is a key hidden in the box that if he puts it in the right place the box will do what he wants but he doesn't know where the key and lock are or what they look like. Also, the inside of the box looks like a miniature city with a few miniature nukes dropped in for good measure. If the DRM was open source, it would be like if the box had neon lines leading to where the key and lock are.

                • (Score: 1) by dilbert on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:26PM

                  by dilbert (444) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:26PM (#1650)

                  If the DRM was open source, it would be like if the box had neon lines leading to where the key and lock are.

                  It sounds like you are saying that open source DRM would be ineffective (at least for the tech savvy). If this is the case, why would a corporation who thinks DRM is a good idea opt for an ineffective DRM?

                  • (Score: 2, Insightful) by githaron on Tuesday February 18 2014, @05:09PM

                    by githaron (581) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @05:09PM (#1710)

                    I think they are only considering standardizing an external API so that you don't need a browser plugin per DRM platform. The propriety DRM engine of choice would probably be downloaded on the fly based an HTML tag and its properties. In essense, you would be moving from a browser plugin to a HTML plugin. Someone correct me if I am wrong.

                  • (Score: 1) by mcgrew on Tuesday February 18 2014, @06:29PM

                    by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Tuesday February 18 2014, @06:29PM (#1781) Homepage Journal

                    It sounds to me like cruchy doesn't have a clue about how computers work. As to "effective DRM", well, I think unicorns and leprechans have bags full. There is no such thing.

                    One minute... how long do I have to wait, guys? It still says it's been a minute and I have to wait.

                    --
                    mcgrewbooks.com mcgrew.info nooze.org
                    • (Score: 0, Troll) by crutchy on Tuesday February 18 2014, @08:44PM

                      by crutchy (179) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @08:44PM (#1895) Homepage Journal

                      It sounds to me like cruchy doesn't have a clue about how computers work

                      sounds to me like you're deaf

                      it also doesn't take a computer genius to figure out that open standards are better than proprietary ones

          • (Score: 2, Interesting) by paddym on Tuesday February 18 2014, @06:22PM

            by paddym (196) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @06:22PM (#1774)

            Not to rant to anyone personally, but here's my rant to anyone who cares:

            "The W3C mission is to lead the World Wide Web to its full potential by developing protocols and guidelines that ensure the long-term growth of the Web."

            DRM is short-term. It is short-term content. I don't care how many standard wrappers are put around DRM, either the mechanism becomes hacked, or the content becomes unusable. It will probably take the death of people (i.e. these medical records were saved with DRM, and now we can't read them) before we abolish it all together, but it is inevitable. If the W3C pushes through these standards at the behest of the industry, I can unequivocally say that we will one day look back at the standards and wonder why we had to add so much complexity for such a short-term occurrence in the history of the world.

            In the past, entertainment was commissioned. Now we can commission work again. Sure the taxes are difficult to handle right now, but this barrier will be lowered. We can pay quality folks to make quality entertainment in full before they even start working. This is more efficient and it requires no DRM. Any subsequent profit is icing and can be shared by the most efficient distributors.

            If it becomes standard to lock up content, then it will become the default output mechanism for many applications. This will require additional software or libraries or plugins on the client computer. The source code can not be built into Firefox. This is no different than what NVIDIA does with Linux kernel drivers or Adobe does with flash today. But whereas old versions of drivers tend to be usable in some contexts, obsolete DRM is NOT! Even though DRM should require little effort to upgrade in theory, the reality is that vendors have no record of being up-to-date, careful, or conscientious especially when it comes to supporting multiple operating systems. They are fickle at best.

            The W3C is subsidizing an obsolete industry at best. At worst, it is enabling a whole-sale Balkanized internet of unsharable content. I fail to see how that is compatible with "long-term growth of the Web".

            • (Score: 0) by crutchy on Tuesday February 18 2014, @09:03PM

              by crutchy (179) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @09:03PM (#1910) Homepage Journal

              i hate drm as much as anyone (i don't buy anything with drm)

              but the reason why flash is so prevalent is because of the lack of any w3c standard

              want to kill flash? support the w3c

              drm sucks, but if you think it's going away you're living in a dreamland

          • (Score: 1) by mcgrew on Tuesday February 18 2014, @06:27PM

            by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Tuesday February 18 2014, @06:27PM (#1777) Homepage Journal

            I'll take neither, thank you. I have neither Silferfish or Flush installed on my machines and I'm not likely to. I'd subscribe to NetFlix were it not for DRM and Silverfish, but fuck 'em, I'll just use TPB until they get their shit together.

            Stop trying to push that garbage.

            --
            mcgrewbooks.com mcgrew.info nooze.org
            • (Score: 0) by crutchy on Tuesday February 18 2014, @09:06PM

              by crutchy (179) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @09:06PM (#1913) Homepage Journal

              i'm not pushing anything. i wish drm would die a painful death. unfortunately in reality it won't.
              you may be able to get away without drm at the moment... but eventually it will infiltrate a lot more copyright content.
              i'd prefer a web future directed by the w3c rather than companies like microsoft, and i'm sure many others would too (especially those that remember ie6)

              • (Score: 1) by mcgrew on Tuesday February 18 2014, @11:56PM

                by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Tuesday February 18 2014, @11:56PM (#2033) Homepage Journal

                The more content is infested with DRM the less I'll buy and the more I'll pirate. If the cartels would stop abusing their paying customers piracy would decrease.

                Don't roll over!

                --
                mcgrewbooks.com mcgrew.info nooze.org
  • (Score: 5, Interesting) by TrumpetPower! on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:47AM

    by TrumpetPower! (590) <ben@trumpetpower.com> on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:47AM (#1310) Homepage

    I feel such a loss as so much of the Internet I grew up together with continues so rapidly to devolve into nothing more than another variation on TV -- a medium never well done.

    I don't think there's any way out save to build yet another network either on the bones of or from the ashes of the Internet...but this would have to be one, from the start, where censorious restrictions are simply not possible to enforce. At the same time, it must have the same ubiquity as the Internet.

    Is Tor or Freenet there yet? It's been a while since I've checked either out....

    b&

    --
    All but God can prove this sentence true.
    • (Score: 1) by clone141166 on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:50AM

      by clone141166 (59) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:50AM (#1313)

      Hmm... maybe we can implement some form of rudimentary, worldwide sneakernet... "SoylentNet... is people!"

      • (Score: 1) by TrumpetPower! on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:54AM

        by TrumpetPower! (590) <ben@trumpetpower.com> on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:54AM (#1317) Homepage

        Sneakernet wouldn't work, but a store-forward-and-cache distributed wireless mesh network could maybe do the trick, especially if bridged over the existing IPv? infrastructure.

        b&

        --
        All but God can prove this sentence true.
    • (Score: 3, Informative) by Daniel Dvorkin on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:50AM

      by Daniel Dvorkin (1099) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:50AM (#1314) Journal

      > Is Tor or Freenet there yet? It's been a while since I've checked either out

      I was told recently that FidoNet still exists. I had no idea.

      --
      Pipedot [pipedot.org]:Soylent [soylentnews.org]::BSD:Linux
      • (Score: 1) by TrumpetPower! on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:56AM

        by TrumpetPower! (590) <ben@trumpetpower.com> on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:56AM (#1319) Homepage

        As great as that sort of thing would be for nostalgia...there're reasons why it fell by the wayside. Plus, one needs certain numbers of participants for a network to be useful....

        b&

        --
        All but God can prove this sentence true.
        • (Score: 1) by FatPhil on Tuesday February 18 2014, @11:33AM

          by FatPhil (863) <pc-soylentNO@SPAMasdf.fi> on Tuesday February 18 2014, @11:33AM (#1537) Homepage

          Yeah, but they said Usenet had fallen by the wayside, but once the idiots who swarmed in swarmed back out again, it retains all the usefulness it had in the 80s. Which was plenty. Some people were even asking for a nntp feed for soylentnews, it's far from a dead distribution mechanism.

          --
          Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people; the smallest discuss themselves
      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 19 2014, @04:30AM

        by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 19 2014, @04:30AM (#2146)

        Fidonet definitely still has some alive and kicking echos, though as you might expect, most people are no longer dialing into BBS's to access it, but rather go through a telnet or ssh interface. Synchronet seems to be the most prevalent still-in-production BBS server package around, but some of the old ones are kept up by enthusiasts, including WWIV, Wildcat, Renegade, and some of the Amiga servers. Enthral was a relatively recently created BSD-oriented BBS package, though I'm not sure if it's still being worked on.

        The biggest issues with BBS's these days is that since it's all TCP/IP, most of them don't end up having much more than the Sysop for a userbase, so the local message boards are usually unused. Some do get a bit of traffic for door games, especially with interBBS play. But when it comes to the message side of things, FIDOnet, DOVEnet, Scinet, Zeronet, etc are largely where the discussions happen, as it's one of the few ways to reach more than a handful of people on them.

    • (Score: 5, Informative) by Angry Jesus on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:08AM

      by Angry Jesus (182) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:08AM (#1332)

      Building out another network won't do anything to change the problem of DRM.

      Tor/Freenet/etc are transport level.

      DRM is all application level. Netflix's DRM'd video doesn't prevent you from getting video from other sources bittorrent or some other questionably legal web site. And moving to Tor won't make Netflix's impact on the market for video any different.

      • (Score: 5, Insightful) by TrumpetPower! on Tuesday February 18 2014, @04:00AM

        by TrumpetPower! (590) <ben@trumpetpower.com> on Tuesday February 18 2014, @04:00AM (#1382) Homepage

        Yes and no.

        A big part of the original glory of the Internet was that every node was both client and server; which was which depended only on what role the node was playing in the context of that particular communication.

        That concept kinda sorta still exists, but only in the most diluted of forms. Realistically, if you want to publish content, you either have to "upgrade" to a "business-class" network account, or you have to pay somebody else (with money, eyeballs, privacy -- or, increasingly, all three) for the privilege of publishing your own content for you.

        Done right, especially with a store / forward / cache topology, the distinction between consumer and producer should again go away. Once that happens, not only does a great deal of power flow back to the people, it levels the playing field in such a way that you really do have to compete on the quality of your offering and not simply rest on your monopolistic laurels.

        Cheers,

        b&

        --
        All but God can prove this sentence true.
        • (Score: 1) by FatPhil on Tuesday February 18 2014, @11:38AM

          by FatPhil (863) <pc-soylentNO@SPAMasdf.fi> on Tuesday February 18 2014, @11:38AM (#1540) Homepage

          Yes and no.

          The original glory of the internet was that the people who were running the clients also had interesting stuff to share, and so them being servers too made sense.
          Nowadays, the vast majorty of the users of the internet have nothing worth keeping to share, they're mostly just consumers rather than creators. Ability to comment on something you've just consumed is not creative, it's paliative - to make you feel involved and keep you on the drip wanting to consume more.

          --
          Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people; the smallest discuss themselves
        • (Score: 1) by nukkel on Tuesday February 18 2014, @05:51PM

          by nukkel (168) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @05:51PM (#1758)

          This.

          The internet was supposed to be all about decentralization. Somewhere along the way, things didn't quite pan out that way.

          • (Score: 1) by jonh on Tuesday February 18 2014, @09:02PM

            by jonh (733) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @09:02PM (#1908) Homepage

            The internet was supposed to be all about decentralization. Somewhere along the way, things didn't quite pan out that way.

            There's a lot of vested interest in centralization. Practically all commercial broadcasting is more interested in selling/telling you stuff than listening to what you have to say. I'm actually hoping that this may start to change as the TV generations die off. Kids raised on (say) reddit and 4chan will probably resent being told to sit quietly and consume their culture.

    • (Score: 1) by Statecraftsman on Tuesday February 18 2014, @10:37AM

      by Statecraftsman (1149) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @10:37AM (#1513)

      Check out cjdns. Their concept is to develop router software that displaces the need for a central authority to hand out IP address space. All communications are encrypted from end to end. It's at http://cjdns.info/ [cjdns.info]

    • (Score: 1) by jonh on Tuesday February 18 2014, @05:03PM

      by jonh (733) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @05:03PM (#1705) Homepage

      I agree, and as much as I personally consider DRM to be a waste of CPU cycles, the devolval (sp?) of the internet into a "Cable TV 2.0" is unfortunate, but there are a number of factors driving it:

      • It's content delivery companies who stand the most to lose from fewer people watching TV, so it makes sense for them to invest in IPTV, to regain their market share. These are the companies which currently make money from bundling cable channels and other 'anti-choice' policies, so they'd be happy to recreate their current business model (and its profitability) to any extent that they can.
      • Traditional entertainment companies understand the broadcast model, and would see transitioning to a many-to-many delivery model to be financially risky. I think governments also are waking up to the idea that (rightly or wrongly) broadcast gives them more opportunity to shape public narratives than peer-to-peer media.
      • In the US (and in other countries to a lesser extent), most content delivery is handled by four or five large congomerates, most of which are also in the ISP business. So there's reduced incentive for these companies to compete with each other, and to some extent, an incentive for them to try to bundle their IPTV 'packages' with their ISP services.
      • ISP's with content to deliver are incentivized to privilege their own content against that of third parties (i.e. putting consumers at risk of going over their data allowance if they stream to much Netflix or Youtube, while the ISP's own VOD offerings are offset against the data cap).
      • Unfortunately, the general public don't seem to be particularly concerned about having access to free ('libre') technology, as the success of the iPhone demonstrates. Other companies are also looking enviously at Apple's 30% commission from the App Store, and would love to have a similar business model.

      So everyone seems to agree that the internet is the future for entertainment, but DRM is attractive to those who are familiar with 1950's-1990's paradigms. Perhaps a few years from now, we might start to see technology and policy being driven by peoples who grew up with the internet, but for now, we're still living in the twilight of the TV generation it seems.

      • (Score: 1) by mcgrew on Tuesday February 18 2014, @06:52PM

        by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Tuesday February 18 2014, @06:52PM (#1794) Homepage Journal

        Unfortunately, the general public don't seem to be particularly concerned about having access to free ('libre') technology, as the success of the iPhone demonstrates.

        Well, first, Joe Sixpack has never heard of libre soft/hardware, secondly phones have always been locked down, and third, Android outsells iPhones two to one.

        And they haven't got a clue about Net Neutrality because nobody breathes a word of it in mainstream news.

        --
        mcgrewbooks.com mcgrew.info nooze.org
    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 19 2014, @04:26AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 19 2014, @04:26AM (#2145)

      Freenet is largely deprecated these days, though somewhat from its ashes, i2p has sprung up. Much better way of doing things than Freenet was (like, you won't unknowingly be hosting kiddie porn by using it), and because it doesn't concern itself with connecting out to the open Internet (like Tor does with exit nodes), in some ways, it appears to be more secure than Tor for doing certain types of things. There's even an altcoin (Anoncoin) specifically designed for use over i2p, as well as some torrent trackers (unlike Tor, i2p is quite happy to handle torrents, as it is largely built on DHT to begin with), some activity on iMule (a clone of aMule, an eMule client), and a decent number of eepsites (the i2p equivalent to onion sites, accessible via the .i2p tld). IRC is very polished on it, as it was one of the major drives to creating it in the first place, and naturally, mail services exist as well. One of the more interesting things I've seen done with it is detailed over at Irongeek.com, where he has a how-to on setting up a raspberry pi as a drop machine, used to infiltrate networks by physically connecting to them and then using a reverse-ssh connection over i2p, getting around the need for a hole being poked through the firewall.

      Worth checking out at http://www.geti2p.net/ [geti2p.net].

  • (Score: 5, Interesting) by regift_of_the_gods on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:52AM

    by regift_of_the_gods (138) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:52AM (#1316)

    Remember that debate? Here's a list of kernel developers who were adamantly opposed [linuxfoundation.org] to letting Nvidia and others release closed source modules and device drivers for Linux.

    That's an impressive list, isn't it? Only, um, I noticed one name was missing.

    The people who devote their lives as chief architects/release managers/standards chairmen for their creations tend to become political pragmatists. I see this trait in Bjarne Stroustrup as well.

  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by Appalbarry on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:58AM

    by Appalbarry (66) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:58AM (#1320) Journal

    It's all fine to whine about how DRM and copyrights etc. are evil and nasty, but the fact is that they're something that we have to live with. Whether you're a creator who actually likes to think that their work is protected from being reused and resold by other people, or you're someone who's just fed up with ham-handed DRM implementations, you'll have to agree that what we have now is a big ugly mess.

    Copy protection didn't work when I was using my Commodore 64, and it sure as hell doesn't work now.

    And the people selling bootleg copies of Beatles records in the 70s had about the same moral sense as the people selling bootlegged copies of Photoshop. Both are wrong on a pretty fundamental level.

    (Unless of course you're actually a real living, breathing Anarchist) (Which is not the same as Libertarian.)

    If the corporations who make their living off of music, software, or media want us to respect their claims of ownership they need to do two things:

    Price their products at a level that people feel is reasonable. (Is $40 for a downloadable audiobook "reasonable?")

    Figure out how to do DRM in a way that's transparent, works for all platforms, and which never, ever gets in my way.

    Maybe, just maybe, the best way to do that is within the HTML standard?

    • (Score: 5, Insightful) by dmc on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:08AM

      by dmc (188) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:08AM (#1334)

      "
      Figure out how to do DRM in a way that's transparent, works for all platforms, and which never, ever gets in my way.

      Maybe, just maybe, the best way to do that is within the HTML standard?
      "

      For those of us that believe in the value of educational and artistic fair use, having to get permission from the keyholders first seems like an awefully big 'getting in the way'. As soon as someone with a politically dissenting view has to ask permission to sample and quote a work to criticize it, it opens them up to persecution by monied interests that would rather have their voice excluded from the public debate. And that is not to mention what free-speech hating regimes such as China and Russia would do with the technology.

      • (Score: 1) by dmc on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:58AM

        by dmc (188) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:58AM (#1379)

        "And that is not to mention what free-speech hating regimes such as China and Russia would do with the technology."

        And I'll be the first to remind myself that the U.S.A. is hardly without sin when it comes to interfering with people's 'inalienable' right to free speech. And if it makes you feel any better s/China and Russia/a future U.S. that believes reporting on the history of the Snowden revelations is a continuing threat to national security/

    • (Score: 2, Insightful) by clone141166 on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:10AM

      by clone141166 (59) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:10AM (#1336)

      Maybe, but what if instead it ends up like most past DRM implementation attempts, a "big ugly mess". Except this time it will be a big, ugly mess that is forever embedded into, and drags down, the entire HTML standard at the same time.

    • (Score: 2, Insightful) by Blackmoore on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:13AM

      by Blackmoore (57) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:13AM (#1342) Journal

      problem of course is that so far noone has ever designed or implemented DRM that hits any of your points. DVD came close - but even then they wont work out of region. and by it's very idea at some point either the delivery tool or the codec will be obsolete.

      Industry certainly isnt going to release a drm standard as open source code either - and that would then become a way to illegetimatize Firefox who isnt going to adopt a unseen binary blob.

    • (Score: 1) by CaptainK on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:21AM

      by CaptainK (1110) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:21AM (#1350)

      you had me at c64.
      mod parent up!

      --
      Your imagination is your only limitation to creation.
    • (Score: 3, Interesting) by EventH0rizon on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:28AM

      by EventH0rizon (936) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:28AM (#1355) Journal

      Well put.

      I want my creative output free when I want it be free, and I want some remuneration when I think it's deserving.

      The limiting factor as I see it is the more or less fixed cost of the major physical assets in your life, and chief among those are rent and/or mortgage.

      If *those* costs started shrinking I'd be more sanguine about making everything free.

      Jaron Lanier's You are not a Gadget [slate.com] has really got me thinking more and more about my previously unconditional and reflexive support for making all content free all the time. Some of what he says annoys the hell out of me, but I find other parts very challenging.

      My 2c.
       

      • (Score: 5, Insightful) by clone141166 on Tuesday February 18 2014, @04:16AM

        by clone141166 (59) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @04:16AM (#1392)

        I think you might be forking the issue a bit, the question this article raises isn't really "should content be free or not?", but rather "should paid content be restricted by DRM?". I have no problem personally with content creators charging for their work (although I think the best work is done by people who truly believe in what they are doing, which tends to favour open, community-based projects rather than corporate-based works).

        But I think the biggest barrier to making a profit from paid content is still the lack of competitive services to rival what piracy-based options provide. I know it sounds odd to say, but content creators should view "piracy" as a competitor/market force. How do you compete with a service that provides the same product for free? The same way you would compete with a corporate competitor who is able to drastically undercut your prices; provide a better service where you can and lower your prices as much as possible. I cite Steam as a working example of this. While game piracy still exists, Steam's lower prices and integrated benefits (friends list, chat, screenshots, community hubs, etc.) make it more beneficial to just pay for the game on Steam than muck around trying to pirate it.

        I think a lot of big corporations have had so much power for so long that they have forgotten what real competition even is. As for smaller content creators, yes it is tough to earn a living these days. But keep in mind that technological advances have made it much, much easier for people to become content creators - if there are more of them per % of the population doesn't mean ALL of them are still entitled to be profitable. Ultimately supply and demand drives what people consider to be a "fair price" for content. Even if you eliminated all piracy tomorrow, small time creators might STILL not see any significant increase in profits.

    • (Score: 5, Insightful) by pbnjoe on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:36AM

      by pbnjoe (313) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:36AM (#1360) Journal

      But DRM is useless and unnecessary, and there are countless examples of this. Though literally every videogame in existence (except for Diablo III, but the game is botched from how they managed it) is pirate-able (as the DRM is stripped very rapidly from the product), Steam is massive, and devs, publishers, as well as other distribution systems are doing fine. Along with games, music, movies, and every other digital form of entertainment you can think of can be pirated (and are), and yet no industry has died, much as groups like the RIAA, MPAA, etc want you to think is going to happen.

      All DRM has done is be a two minute annoyance for bootleggers and crackers (and none for pirates), and affect legitimate customers negatively, sometimes to the point of completely preventing access to the media, even though no wrongdoing has occurred.

      As for the latter bits of your post, yes, pricing needs to be not so ridiculous, but no, just keep DRM out. It's only put in for the most part by corporations who want to treat everyone like dirty criminals who owe them the shirt off their backs or the poor CEO will starve, and it's terribly offensive. For this lone creator you mentioned, they'll just have to understand that's not really viable (I can explain better later if needed). Treat your customers right, and they'll treat you right back (just check out GOG, for example).

      Anyway, this has been hashed out repeatedly in many discussions.

      • (Score: 1) by pbnjoe on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:39AM

        by pbnjoe (313) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:39AM (#1362) Journal

        My apologies if the diction of the third paragraph is a bit rough, but like I said, I get offended about it.

      • (Score: 3, Insightful) by everdred on Tuesday February 18 2014, @04:45AM

        by everdred (110) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @04:45AM (#1401) Journal

        corporations who want to treat everyone like dirty criminals

        I don't think even they think it's about piracy. It's about locking as many consumers as possible into their platform and extracting a stream of future sales from them, not to mention extracting licensing fees from hardware manufacturers.

        • (Score: 1) by pbnjoe on Tuesday February 18 2014, @04:55AM

          by pbnjoe (313) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @04:55AM (#1405) Journal

          True. I don't believe the two trains of thought are mutually exclusive, however. Dealing with current "lost" sales (aka "how can we get more money", not that they're losing it) with their piracy argument (which they don't even believe, I think, the argument's just used as leverage) and lock-in for the future money-taking :)

        • (Score: 1) by greenfruitsalad on Tuesday February 18 2014, @07:49AM

          by greenfruitsalad (342) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @07:49AM (#1472)

          my ONLY concern with a DRM that works is that i will lose access to MY media when the company enforcing/checking licenses goes bust. e.g.: if adobe shut down, half of world's ebooks would become unreadable. that is something that is unacceptable to me. once i paid for something, i shouldn't have to fear that.

          • (Score: 1) by everdred on Tuesday February 18 2014, @04:02PM

            by everdred (110) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @04:02PM (#1670) Journal

            That's reasonable. Your options are to not buy DRMed content, or buy it and then break said DRM.

            Obviously, there are problems with both options.

    • (Score: 4, Insightful) by hash14 on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:49AM

      by hash14 (1102) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:49AM (#1372)

      What about respecting term limits? Or is the Mickey Mouse Protection Act due to come up again soon?

      Sorry, when copyrights start respecting people, people will start respecting copyrights. There's no reason why the Beatles should still be hampered by copyright law.

      • (Score: 2, Insightful) by everdred on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:57AM

        by everdred (110) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:57AM (#1378) Journal

        > Sorry, when copyrights start respecting people, people will start respecting copyrights.

        Yep. Setting aside hash14's point about the ever-increasing term of copyright, does anyone think that when your DRMed content goes into the public domain that the DRM is just going to magically disappear so that you (or maybe your great-grandchildren) can use it as you wish?

        • (Score: 1) by dry on Tuesday February 18 2014, @05:34AM

          by dry (223) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @05:34AM (#1424) Journal

          What makes you think that anything is going to go into the public domain? They've already done the opposite and rolled out longer limits and public domain stuff has re-entered copyright.
          These people really believe that IP is property and theirs forever.

          • (Score: 1) by everdred on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:49PM

            by everdred (110) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:49PM (#1662) Journal

            I would direct you to the qualifier with which I opened my comment:

            > Setting aside hash14's point about the ever-increasing term of copyright...

            The point I was making was that even though things may in theory enter the public domain in the future, DRM ensures that a whole lot of stuff people buy won't, even if it legally does.

    • (Score: 3, Insightful) by TrumpetPower! on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:51AM

      by TrumpetPower! (590) <ben@trumpetpower.com> on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:51AM (#1373) Homepage

      That's all fine and dandy.

      Or, at least, it would be if it weren't for the rampant and flagrant theft of intellectual property going on today -- very real theft on an absolutely unimaginable scale.

      No, I don't mean torrents or the latest reincarnation of Napster.

      I mean the wholesale raping and pillaging of the public domain.

      The real pirates aren't the pimply-faced kids and the cheapskates passing around a shaky cellphone video of the latest blockbuster or TV episodes of some fake reality show; no, it's the copyright cartels.

      When they start to show some respect for intellectual property rights, I might start to think about showing them some in turn. Give us back Steamboat Willie, Ravel's Bolero, The Matrix, and everything else created before 2010, and we'll talk.

      Until then, copyright as it actually exists today is an unconscionable restriction on the freedom of expression.

      Fuck that noise.

      Cheers,

      b&

      --
      All but God can prove this sentence true.
      • (Score: 1) by mcgrew on Tuesday February 18 2014, @08:42PM

        by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Tuesday February 18 2014, @08:42PM (#1892) Homepage Journal

        I'm with you except:

        When they start to show some respect for intellectual property rights, I might start to think about showing them some in turn. Give us back... everything else created before 2010, and we'll talk.

        Four years is WAY too short a term, and it's never been that short. I'm publishing The Paxil Diaries as a book, and the first chapter was published on the net in 2003. If copyright were 5 years, Random House could just print the damned thing, make a shitload of money, and I would get nothing.

        I have no problem with you reading my book for free (see my sig) but I would have a BIG problem with you making money on MY work without me getting any compensation whatever.

        Isaac Asimov didn't earn a dime on Foundation for ten years; the publisher had no marketing money. I'm having the same problem with Nobots, I get raves and the only two complaints are the cover art (one guy) and some of the "big words" (two women; "Are those real words? Can I look them up in the dictionary?"). I don't expect to get rich off of it, but I expect nobody else to, either.

        Ten years is a REALLY short time, son, unless you're only 20. A twenty year copyright term (as it was before 1900) would work, that would put everything before 1994 in the public domain. and 1994 was like yesterday.

        I'd also like to add that copyright should only apply to works "affixed in a permanent medium" meaning e-versions of everything would be free, counted as advertisement for the physical object that holds the content.

        --
        mcgrewbooks.com mcgrew.info nooze.org
        • (Score: 1) by TrumpetPower! on Tuesday February 18 2014, @10:37PM

          by TrumpetPower! (590) <ben@trumpetpower.com> on Tuesday February 18 2014, @10:37PM (#1990) Homepage

          Sorry -- that was a typo.

          I meant, 2000, with my choice of The Matrix (1999) meant as the bounding example. Fourteen years, as I recall, was good enough for the First Congress, and I daresay it's more than good enough in today's faster-than-ever Internet age.

          b&

          --
          All but God can prove this sentence true.
          • (Score: 1) by mcgrew on Tuesday February 18 2014, @11:54PM

            by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Tuesday February 18 2014, @11:54PM (#2032) Homepage Journal

            Yes, fourteen isn't bad, especially if you could renew for another 14 like it was back then. I'd also have it roll back to needing copyright registration and requiring a copyright notice for the work.

            --
            mcgrewbooks.com mcgrew.info nooze.org
      • (Score: 1) by tangomargarine on Tuesday February 18 2014, @09:58PM

        by tangomargarine (667) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @09:58PM (#1957)

        2010?! You want copyright to last 4 years? At least give them 10, dude.

        --
        "Is that really true?" "I just spent the last hour telling you to think for yourself! Didn't you hear anything I said?"
    • (Score: 5, Insightful) by SpallsHurgenson on Tuesday February 18 2014, @04:05AM

      by SpallsHurgenson (656) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @04:05AM (#1387)

      DRM needs a third feature: an escape clause.

      Because we are increasingly running against DRM-protected media that has become inaccessible because the authorization server is not accessible. There needs to be a method for users to access their content after the provider choose to no longer support it. Perhaps an "all-access" key or software to remove the DRM is held in escrow so long as there is continued support for the media/DRM; when the authorization servers go down, the key or software is released to the public. This should be a legal obligation put onto publishers so they can't force users to repurchase content they have already purchased.

      That there is no such obligation on publishers /and/ users can be prosecuted for "cracking" their own property should they need to access the data after the publisher stop support, is just another example of how unfair and balanced against the consumer the market really is.

      • (Score: 1) by jcd on Tuesday February 18 2014, @07:31AM

        by jcd (883) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @07:31AM (#1466)

        This is a great idea. I hesitate a long time before buying anything that has DRM attached to it. I know, I've sold out even considering it, but let's be honest - sometimes, I need to read/watch/listen to something that doesn't come another way. And yeah, they've won. But as others have said above, DRM is not going anywhere. We need to find intelligent, transparent ways to manage it now. It's like trying to uninvent castle walls. They amount to an inconvenience for people with the tools and know-how (e.g., rival kings with catapults and trebuchets), and they tend to trap those that supposedly benefit from the defense in with disease and famine, but they aren't going to stop building walls because the peasants keep dying.

        --
        "What good's an honest soldier if he can be ordered to behave like a terrorist?"
        • (Score: 1) by mcgrew on Tuesday February 18 2014, @09:31PM

          by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Tuesday February 18 2014, @09:31PM (#1933) Homepage Journal

          sometimes, I need to read/watch/listen to something that doesn't come another way.

          You NEED to? What, pray tell, do you NEED to read/watch/listen to? The only useful info behind paywalls is scientific journals, and they're hardcopy, not DRMed.

          You don't NEED to watch Gravity, you know. It is not a necessity! And god damn it, I don't use it, ever, at all (unless it's been cracked like DVDs; cracked DRM is no DRM at all). Hell, back in the early 0s I bought a CD and found it had DRM (wouldn't play in the computer) and returned it. Yeah, I could have cracked it or simply sampled it (music DRM is especially brain-dead) but I just returned it for a refund and told them the reason. "This CD is defective; it was designed not to work in my computer. It is not a Redbook CD." I got my money back.

          --
          mcgrewbooks.com mcgrew.info nooze.org
          • (Score: 1) by jcd on Wednesday February 19 2014, @04:48AM

            by jcd (883) on Wednesday February 19 2014, @04:48AM (#2151)

            You NEED to? What, pray tell, do you NEED to read/watch/listen to?

            I'm not talking about petty entertainment. That I can take or leave on my own terms. But I'm a teacher. Sometimes I have to use certain media to make a point. I can't talk about the Vietnam protest movement and the relevant music legally without acquiring it through certain channels. Some movies and videos - in particular things like the History Channel, back when it used to actually have History - come from DRM only sources. They're good at that with some things.

            As far as reading is concerned, relevant research for my MA and for classroom activities sometimes only comes from DRM sources.

            And choosing to watch these things on youtube or finding ways to circumnavigate/crack the DRM doesn't help solve the problems that DRM poses. It's the principle of the thing that's the problem. All that does is up the chance that I'll end up in some sort of legal trouble.

            --
            "What good's an honest soldier if he can be ordered to behave like a terrorist?"
            • (Score: 1) by mcgrew on Wednesday February 19 2014, @04:44PM

              by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Wednesday February 19 2014, @04:44PM (#2585) Homepage Journal

              I can't talk about the Vietnam protest movement and the relevant music legally without acquiring it through certain channels.

              Nonsense, iTunes MP3s have no DRM so you can buy copies unencumbered. The question isn't "is it free?" it's "is it encumbered by DRM?" As to photos and videos, two seconds found this. [google.com] plenty of unencumbered photos and most likely videos as well.

              As far as reading is concerned, relevant research for my MA and for classroom activities sometimes only comes from DRM sources.

              They stopped printing textbooks and research papers on paper? Paper has no DRM.

              It's the principle of the thing that's the problem.

              Agreed completely. You certainly woudn't want to use illegal materials in class.

              --
              mcgrewbooks.com mcgrew.info nooze.org
              • (Score: 1) by jcd on Wednesday February 19 2014, @04:47PM

                by jcd (883) on Wednesday February 19 2014, @04:47PM (#2590)

                That's fair. I'm not looking for free. But I just don't trust Apple's "no really, there's no DRM and you won't be punished" promises. I suppose that's a separate issue. And as far as papers go, unless you want access to only the most basic (and mostly out of date) stuff, forget about print. Especially if you live nowhere near a college campus like I do.

                --
                "What good's an honest soldier if he can be ordered to behave like a terrorist?"
    • (Score: 2, Interesting) by mmarujo on Tuesday February 18 2014, @11:30AM

      by mmarujo (347) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @11:30AM (#1536)

      I almost, almost, wish this could happen, but it never will.

      For some, DRM will always be immoral, and take no part of it, so this new standard will alienate them.

      For the DRM proposer it will never be enough. Honestly it feels like dealing with a spoyled 4 year old, "I WANA ICE CREAM!", so this as a standard will not be enough for them.

      Who remains? The majority of people, who will still not be able to see the latest blockbuster, because they are not in the right country/timezone.

      So, for my part I believe the only course to adopt will be No DRM. Yes, that may mean we will have to put up with flash or whatever, but still... I don't feel like indulging a spoiled 4 year old.

    • (Score: 1) by RedGreen on Tuesday February 18 2014, @01:47PM

      by RedGreen (888) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @01:47PM (#1596)

      "It's all fine to whine about how DRM and copyrights etc. are evil and nasty, but the fact is that they're something that we have to live with. Whether you're a creator who actually likes to think that their work is protected from being reused and resold by other people, or you're someone who's just fed up with ham-handed DRM implementations, you'll have to agree that what we have now is a big ugly mess."

      It may be a mess but no one has to agree to anything involving DRM there are already laws on the books to deal with copyright infringement that can be used in such a circumstance.

      "If the corporations who make their living off of music, software, or media want us to respect their claims of ownership they need to do two things:"

      No way in hell anyone should respect their claim of ownership they have none. Copyright is a supposedly limited grant of exclusivity, they have the right to use that work for a limited period of time then it again supposedly reverts to the public who granted them the chance to make money from that exclusive access. That is not the way it works now though the content Mafia have successfully stolen that public domain. All the works that should be reverting back to the public who have granted them that copyright are not now doing so due to the never ending retroactive extension of said copyrights, as it stands now not another work under it will enter the public domain ever again..

      --
      "I modded down, down, down, and the flames went higher." -- Sven Olsen
    • (Score: 1) by mcgrew on Tuesday February 18 2014, @07:20PM

      by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Tuesday February 18 2014, @07:20PM (#1815) Homepage Journal

      It's all fine to whine about how DRM and copyrights etc. are evil and nasty, but the fact is that they're something that we have to live with.

      No, we don't. The very concept is stupid, and there is nothing I absolutely need that is protected by DRM. I'd subscribe to NetFlix were it not for Silverfish DRM. Instead, I'll just torrent. Fuck 'em. If you want me to pay for your shit, sell me what I want and don't add any stinky garbage.

      Whether you're a creator who actually likes to think that their work is protected from being reused and resold by other people, or you're someone who's just fed up with ham-handed DRM implementations, you'll have to agree that what we have now is a big ugly mess.

      I'm a content creator (BUY MY BOOK!)who knows good and well that DRM doesn't protect diddly squat and I agre that it's a big ugly mess. A big ugly mess I refuse to have anything to do with.

      And the people selling bootleg copies of Beatles records in the 70s had about the same moral sense as the people selling bootlegged copies of Photoshop. Both are wrong on a pretty fundamental level.

      I agree about bootleg copies being sold. That's just wrong. But even though there was a big stink from the labels about bootleg sales back then, I never saw a single bootleg copy of anything for sale. OTOH cassettes of albums were traded back and forth like P2P dies now, and what's more, it was specifically legalized by the Home Recording Act of 1976 (or was it 1978?).

      And like P2P, it led to sales. Like today, back in the late sixties when I was a teenager the radio played garbage. You didn't hear Zeppelin or Hendrix or Sabbath on the radio, although you might hear "Magic Bus" or "You Really Got Me" once a month mixed in with the Archies and similar commercial dreck. My friends heard of Zeppelin from me; I was in a record store the day their first album came out and the store was playing it. I wouldn't have heard of Hendrix or Iron Butterfly without our sneakernet P2P file sharing. And there were no complaints, it was legal.

      The KSHE came around in 1967 and changed St Louis radio forever.

      If the corporations who make their living off of music, software, or media want us to respect their claims of ownership they need to do two things:

      Price their products at a level that people feel is reasonable. (Is $40 for a downloadable audiobook "reasonable?")

      Figure out how to do DRM in a way that's transparent, works for all platforms, and which never, ever gets in my way.

      Impossible. If you can't copy it you can't back it up. I have LPs that are 45 years old, will your DRMed content still be available in 2050? But your first two statements are on the money: if someone wants your product and can afford your product and your product is actually available, they'll buy it. Piss them off and they'll download it from TPB.

      --
      mcgrewbooks.com mcgrew.info nooze.org
  • (Score: 4, Insightful) by Konomi on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:10AM

    by Konomi (189) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:10AM (#1338)

    I don't mind the idea of having some built in DRM on just videos, what bothers me is will every web page I load eventually be DRMed so much that I can't even save a simple image? The main worry for me as usual is creep, will it just stay with videos? What else can they "encrypt". I probably speak for a lot of people when I say I don't trust them just to keep it at videos, I am sure eventually they'll want to encrypt it all and the Internet will just become another locked down medium.

    Governments and middle men of any form of culture or media do not like the Internet, and they're looking to put it back in the box.

    • (Score: 5, Funny) by SGT CAPSLOCK on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:34AM

      by SGT CAPSLOCK (118) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:34AM (#1358) Journal

      This sentiment is -exactly- why I've already begun to archive all of the important images from the web in a local cache.

      So far my archive contains these important cultural items:

      - a spinning sign that says "email"
      - a multicoloured bullet character '•'
      - an image of some animated fire burning
      - a single white pixel
      - one cat that appears to be floating

      DRM will never affect me! Ahahahahahahaha.

      • (Score: 1) by useless on Tuesday February 18 2014, @09:18AM

        by useless (426) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @09:18AM (#1495)

        You missed the animated rainbow horiz. rule gif. Hurry and grab it before it's too late.

  • (Score: 2, Insightful) by meisterister on Tuesday February 18 2014, @06:10AM

    by meisterister (949) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @06:10AM (#1436) Journal

    I can't wait for the day when they get to watch DRM'd content using DRM'd HTML with a DRM'd plugin on a DRM'd operating system! All we need now is DRM for monitors, input devices, and eventually the user.

    --
    (May or may not have been) Posted from my K6-2, Athlon XP, or Pentium I/II/III.
    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 18 2014, @09:23AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 18 2014, @09:23AM (#1496)

      We've had iPhones for a while.

    • (Score: 1) by tangomargarine on Tuesday February 18 2014, @10:02PM

      by tangomargarine (667) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @10:02PM (#1962)

      "All we need now is DRM for monitors, input devices, and eventually the user."

      Isn't that what HDMI is for? So you can't view their bits without the magic cable.

      --
      "Is that really true?" "I just spent the last hour telling you to think for yourself! Didn't you hear anything I said?"
  • (Score: 1) by TonyWilk on Tuesday February 18 2014, @06:35AM

    by TonyWilk (213) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @06:35AM (#1444)

    DRM - which will always be implemented in one way or other by content providers.
    Forking HTML - which sounds like an utter disaster.

    What disturbs me most?
    answers on a postcard.

    • (Score: 3, Interesting) by Open4D on Tuesday February 18 2014, @09:42AM

      by Open4D (371) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @09:42AM (#1499) Journal

      I support content creators' right not to let me see their content, or to impose bizarre restrictions like ... I have to be riding naked on their pet giraffe, or have to hand over control of my computer to them, in order for them to let me see their content. But that doesn't mean their ideas should be accepted into the mainstream and supported in public interest technical standards.

      I am not an expert, but the arguments against DRM in HTML have been made convincingly in other discussions. Today, however, is the first time I've heard the idea of forking HTML. This would obviously be unfortunate, but it wouldn't "disturb" me. Sometimes forking is the lesser of two evils, as - for example - certain parts of the News for Nerds community have concluded in recent weeks.

  • (Score: 2, Interesting) by KritonK on Tuesday February 18 2014, @10:20AM

    by KritonK (465) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @10:20AM (#1507)

    Can such a standard even be implemented in an open source browser?

    It seems to me that there's nothing to prevent someone from modifying the browser code to store the decoded stream on disk, instead of displaying it on screen. Making DRM part of the HTML standard would probably make open source browsers, that implement it, illegal!

    • (Score: 1) by Blackmoore on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:31PM

      by Blackmoore (57) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:31PM (#1616) Journal

      it isn't.

      The content providers pushing this know this; and it is a move to force open source to either carry an unknown binary blob (which i expect to never show up) or force them out of the market since they wont be able to play the content; or extract large fees from open source to license the obfuscated binary blob.

      anyone with a programming background will look at this and unreasonable.
      you can still use 99% of the web without the drm, (unless these bastards think they can just buy everything worthwhile up and lock it behind drm) or the blob will be De-obfucated in a few hours, and a patch will be distributed in a few days. (that the lawyers will now use to try to extract payments from Linux and other open source companies)

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 18 2014, @01:41PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 18 2014, @01:41PM (#1592)

    EME is an abomination which should be rejected.

    https://www.defectivebydesign.org/sign-on-against- drm-in-html [defectivebydesign.org]

  • (Score: 2, Insightful) by iWantToKeepAnon on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:05PM

    by iWantToKeepAnon (686) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:05PM (#1606) Homepage Journal

    Forking already accepted platform with incredible momentum ... who would do that?? .... Oh wait .... SoylentML anybody? Also:

    Re:typo in headline by mattie_p "Thanks, I've fixed it now. I appreciate the feedback!"

    Editors that listen to feedback? Incredible.

    --
    "Happy families are all alike; every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way." -- Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy
  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 18 2014, @06:56PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 18 2014, @06:56PM (#1802)

    I'd be for any future HTML standard to explicitly forbid DRM on any HTML element (e.g., video). Even though companies will do it, they would not be implementing HTML version x.x, and they would be actively violating it, which FOSS browsers could bring to the user's attention ("this page violates yadda yadda yadda"). It would make a strong statement about "our" view of DRM. I know this will never happen.

    • (Score: 1) by meisterister on Wednesday February 19 2014, @01:57AM

      by meisterister (949) on Wednesday February 19 2014, @01:57AM (#2079) Journal

      You bring up a very interesting point (could someone please mod the parent Insightful). If enough FOSS browsers complain to the user that the page implements DRM (preferably with strong wording, such as "The page you are trying to view violates your rights"), then HTML wouldn't even need to be forked.

      --
      (May or may not have been) Posted from my K6-2, Athlon XP, or Pentium I/II/III.