Property is Property

by on November 29, 2005

The bad news about Sony spyware keeps pouring in. We’ve already seen how the XCP software uses deceptive techniques to hide its presence from the user. Now we learn that Sony’s other DRM scheme, MediaMax installs itself on your system even if you click “decline” on the EULA that pops up on your screen.

This is trespass, plain and simple. No software should ever install itself on a user’s computer without some notification to the user and opportunity to decline. That’s doubly true for drivers, because if they have bugs, they can render your whole system unstable and even introduce security vulnerabilities.

I’ve been a little shocked to see pro-DRM libertarians shrug their shoulders at the recent revelations about Sony’s behavior. (and no, Sony hasn’t been “bending over backwards” to fix the problems) We libertarians believe that property rights are fundamental rights that everyone has a duty to respect. Even big corporations. We don’t think that trespass is OK as long as it doesn’t do too much damage.

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