It’s interesting how people on the technology side of the media business tend to badmouth digital rights management technology even as they acquiesce to the content industry’s demands for it. We’ve seen how Steve Jobs bluntly admitted that DRM is not an effective piracy deterrent, just months before rolling out what became one of the world’s most widely deployed DRM schemes. And we’ve seen how Yahoo has pointed out to the labels that DRM does little more than inconvenience paying customers. Now Ashwin Navin, co-founder of the BitTorrent service, is badmouthing the concept even as his company implements it at the behest of Hollywood:
The reason it’s bad for content providers is because typically a DRM ties a user to one hardware platform, so if I buy my all my music on iTunes, I can’t take that content to another hardware environment or another operating platform. There are a certain number of consumers who will be turned off by that, especially people who fear that they may invest in a lot of purchases on one platform today and be frustrated later when they try to switch to another platform, and be turned off with the whole experience. Or some users might not invest in any new content today because they’re not sure if they want to have an iPod for the rest of their life.
Quite So. The people who pay for your content are not the enemy, and it’s counterproductive to create headaches for them.
Hat tip: Ars Technica