Microsoft’s Peter Rosser on DRM

Peter Rosser: “I’m not a big fan of DRM, but I do see the business need for it. Microsoft makes a big, inviting target for lawsuits if we even appear to be soft on protecting copy protected content. That doesn’t make me happy, since it attempts to restrict what I can do with ‘my’ content, and no matter how much I am told (and cerebrally understand) that it’s not mine at all, but I’m just licensed to view it, I still persist in thinking of it as ‘mine’. After all, I paid for it! As a consumer, I want complete freedom in what I do with my content. As a stockholder in Microsoft, I want to both protect from lawsuits and grow the consumer market, which seem to be opposing goals.”

“Do you think that Comcast, DirecTV or EchoStar would agree to attach a digital tuner to a PC that can decode their signal without an ironclad guarantee that the content would not just end up on the net? They are terrified of that prospect… and with (arguably) good reason. DRM is what we need to open up PC-based solutions for all of our content. I don’t want to pirate my Comcast Digital Cable feed… but I *do* want to watch it! In high-definition and on my Media Center. If the DRM gets out of my way, and lets me burn a DVD for my collection (hard drives are finite, after all), then I’m game. I don’t care if I can’t just post a video of some HBO movie on the internet. I don’t really have the inclination anyhow.”

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Can’t seem to comment on his site.

    The files ending up straight to the net in HD is what they have today anyway so it seems like sort of wondering argument that somehow DRM tomorrow is going to keep that from happening today. There is always going to be away to get at the data.

    That aside, I don’t think most of us have a problem with the DRM that keeps things from free flowing, the problem all the other ‘other’ controls the IP holders are demanding, controls that force me to interact with ‘my’ data. I also say mine because I also paid for it, several times as in equipment and cable/sat fees, and taxes on blank dvd’s that now I’m told I shouldn’t use for goodness sake.
    Ip Owners simple should not have say over something I bought in repeated ways as to if I can fast forward or skip in it, or around it, if I can keep it on my drive and for how long, if I can record it at all…
    Sorry but once that data flows over my property line I feel pretty strongly, that MY personal use rights trump their rights at pretty much every level with exception of redistributing to an infinite audience.

    They want to get tracking and acceptance then the stupid that is about manipulating markets and trying to manipulate viewing habits needs to go away. If they focus on real issues like distribution they will get more tracking, compliance and sympathy… First time some local affiliate decides I can’t record the Simpson’s or anything else I paid for over and over again, I’m pretty much going to go ape :).

    It’s the other stuff not distro protection that has folks rolling their eye’s and feeling no guilt about just grabbing stuff off the net that they feel they already paid for.

    Another example of this aggravating approach by IP owners and MS compliance. I was watching a DVD last night on my MCE box and low and behold I could neither fast forward through nor chapter skip pass the illegal down load commercial that is on everything now, then I had similar problem my kids DVD with some stupid commercial hawking some other movie being put out by Disney.
    This sort of stuff is EXSTREAMLY upsetting. Partly due to the loss of person control, but largely just do to flat out annoyance with having to be forced through hoops. The answer? Well, I just ripped both of them.
    The fact that I felt the need to this is a pretty sad commentary on MS not standing up for it’s direct customers and giving to much the IP owners under whatever guess you want to claim and a sad commentary on what the IP owners think they have the right to inflict on you or me, you know the customer, after you have given them money. It’s my content and you don’t get to tell me how to watch be it DVD or broadcast.

    This sort of IP abuse is simple not ok.


  2. Thomas Hawk says:

    I’m sure that Hollywood is not pleased about copies of their shows flying around bittorrent networks as is happening today, HOWEVER, HDTV is a whole other arena which more significantly threatens their DVD franchise. They will drag their heels at best.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Yeah, like they don’t drag their feet on everything anyway.

    Here is the thing though, and this is the whole problem with argument that DRM is needed (I think some is, and as any good compromise everyone is a little unhappy). Hollywood, says fine if we don’t get our way we will just take our toys and go home. No content, ever, trapped in analog hell. Clearly that is not going to happen, massive market forces and demand is aligning, including congress taking away spectrum eventually etc. They quite simple will have to play ball at some point regardless, and if they don’t they will simple face extinction in the face of somebody who will. This doesn’t do anything to speed what want up but at the end somebody is simple going to have to call their bluff because the DRM demands and heavy handed abuse is simple getting totally out of control. It dose not help with large companies like MS that could do a heck of a lot more to advocate, rollover to expedite their agendas. We all end up paying for that in the medium and long run by a totaly devaluation of what we have along with loss of control and we are right back to where started being forced to watch comercial and having to dance on sobodie elses strings. Not really where I want to end up.