News Corp. to release TV/films for download (protected by MS-DRM)

News Corp. to release TV/films for download (protected by MS-DRM)

Summary: Personally, I think the very first question that should be asked whenever a movie or television studio releases its content for download, or whenever some new multimedia device or phone comes out, is what Digital Rights Management (DRM) technology (otherwise known as CRAP -- Cancellation, Restriction, And Punishment) it's intertwined with?

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TOPICS: Mobility
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Personally, I think the very first question that should be asked whenever a movie or television studio releases its content for download, or whenever some new multimedia device or phone comes out, is what Digital Rights Management (DRM) technology (otherwise known as CRAP -- Cancellation, Restriction, And Punishment) it's intertwined with?  If it's a device that's full of CRAP and you know what kind of CRAP it is, then that gives you an idea of what content will work on it and what other devices it may or may not interoperate with.  If it's some kind of content that's full of CRAP and you know what kind of CRAP it is, then you might know what devices support it (provided you have an idea of what devices support which kind of CRAP in them... something you shouldn't have to know or care about). 

But, 99 times out of 100, any time you read some story about some new device or content distribution deal, that little detail -- the one that's probably most important -- gets left out.  That said, there is a hint in this morning's story from the Register about News Corp.'s (Rupert Murdoch's outfit) new download deal:

Rupert Murdoch's News Corp will start selling films and TV episodes via download from October...Films will be available from the day of the DVD release and TV shows will go online 24 hours after broadcast....You won't be allowed to burn DVDs of the content, but can transfer them to another Windows Media device.

In other words, it will be using Microsoft's DRM which means the content will not work on any video iPods (or any iPod-compatible devices coming out of Apple).  But, what's worse though --- is the business about not being able to burn to DVD.  This is the evil of CRAP at work with an emphasis on the R for "Restriction."  Let's say you download a movie for $20 (News Corp.'s going rate).  That's pure profit compared to the sale of physical media like DVD. You just helped News Corp. eliminate all the channel costs associated with manufacturing (the DVD itself, the packaging) and distribution of DVD movies like the $16 Because of Winn-Dixie and the thanks you get is that you can only view it on a computer or on a video capable Windows Media device like one of those from Creative Labs or iRiver. 

Even worse, the long-term future of those Windows Media devices was severely called into question when Microsoft launched its Zune brand.  That brand will put Microsoft directly into competition with the same companies that have been licensing Microsoft's "PlaysForSure" DRM (which apparently be different than "Zune" DRM).  How they'll respond is anybody's guess but it's hard to imagine the two systems co-existing for very long (the market certainly doesn't need yet another DRM system) or Microsoft's partners being too happy about competing with the company that originally took a non-threatening position when it began to license its technology.  At this point, given the cloud of uncertainty hanging over Windows Media DRM, I would strongly recommend not buying any content like a $20 movie from Fox until the dust settles (to be honest...I wouldn't recommend buying any DRM'd content, but I know how some people aren't as sensitive t the issue as they should be).

Topic: Mobility

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7 comments
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  • What's wrong?

    Media executive: ?Look! We will be releasing more TV shows through iTunes, under Apple?s DRM!?

    Consumer: ?Lose the DRM!?

    Media executive: ?Look! We will be allowing users to download movies onto their computers using DRM!?

    Consumer: ?Lose the DRM!?

    Media executive: ?Look! will be allowing users to download their favorite music tracks, using one of several DRM schemes!?

    Consumer: ?Lose the DRM!?

    Media executive: ?Look! We will be allowing users to download legitimate tracks off several P2P networks!

    Consumer: ?Lose the DRM!?

    Media executive: ?Gee, I wonder why our projects aren?t taking off??

    Consumer: ?Sigh.?
    P. Douglas
  • Pay more, get less

    Gee, spend more than the cost of a dvd to get a poorer quality download without any of the extras? A download I can only view on authorized Windows computers, and one that can't be re-sold to a used disc store?

    Sounds like a real winner to me. Really, they should up the price to $40, it's such a compelling product.
    tic swayback
  • Tivo has CRAP now, too!

    Arrrgh!

    http://www.douglaskarr.com/?p=184

    Doug
    Douglas Karr
    • Now?

      Where have you been? That's been there a while, a glitch a while back marked some as delete that shouldn't have been.

      Hell, I know this and I don't even have a tivo (or any other PVR)
      rpmyers1
  • Dead? Sorry, not good enough. You're still getting sued!

    This one is amazing, hard to believe:

    http://tinyurl.com/jt6b2
    tic swayback
  • Actually Rupert Murdoch is already doing this

    [url=http://www.sky.com/skybybroadband/home]Sky by broadband[/url] is available from Sky Television (which is another Murdoch business that delivers TV content via satellite into the UK).
    You can download a selection of films for FREE (providing you are a Sky satellite customer) via P2P methods. The films are DRM encoded so that they can only be played on the computer they are downloaded to, and are restricted against burning to DVD.

    In this instance David, DRM works. If these movies were not protected by DRM, Sky would not offer them as a free download.
    Scrat
  • THE WHOLE THING HERE.............

    Could be taken care of but it won't happen.... People have GOT to stop BUYING this C.R.A.P.

    $$$ figures are the only thing that talk to these companies, and any more, the only thing they truly even want to consider. Same goes for WGA !!! QUIT buying this stuff "just because you can"... Look at the BIG picture and everybody do EVERYBODY else a favor and hit 'em in the pocket book !!! Gasoline goes up absurdly and people still fill their damn outfits to the brim to "go on vacation" JUST BECAUSE THEY CAN !!! People buy products from companies that continually lead them down the primrose path, oh, doing SO much in OUR best interest... (Har har), blatantly hosing us over, and people STILL run out and buy it, buy it, buy it !!! We're constantly laying down for these .... Ummm.... Bulwarks of American Free Enterprise, **puke**. STOP IT... In any way you can... We need to quit feeding them. Seriously look at alternatives.....
    Senlac_Hill