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Microsoft Media Movies

Single-play DVDs a Hoax 227

Posted by samzenpus
from the don't-trust-anyone dept.
psy writes "Ed Bott's blog states that in relation to a previously posted slashdot story "a hoax can spread just as fast as a genuine news story. That's the lesson from the bogus story published in an obscure UK business magazine yesterday that claimed Microsoft is about to unleash a new single-play DVD format. Paul Thurrott reprinted the story without giving credit to the original source. Bink.nu picked up the story from Paul and reprinted it verbatim. Techdirt commented on the original story, with attribution but without any fact-checking. So did John Walkenbach. The funny part? There's no truth to the story. None whatsoever. In fact, the original story sparked a flurry of e-mails around Microsoft as people in different groups tried to figure out where on earth this story came from. After the head-scratching stopped, a spokesmen told me, they concluded that the story was not true. "It appears to be confusing an existing feature within Windows Media DRM that allows for single-play of promotional digital material. This has been an option for content owners to use for some time for the Windows Media format - it does not apply to MPEG2 content found on DVDs."
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Single-play DVDs a Hoax

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  • by powerpuffgirls (758362) on Wednesday October 05, 2005 @09:06PM (#13726578)
    After the head-scratching stopped, a Microsoft spokesman told me, they concluded that the story was not true.

    How do we know Ed Bott's comment is not a hoax too? He just said a MS spokesman told him so, but where's the source?

    I believe the real story is, MS did invent this Play-Once DVD, however due to huge amount of negative comments from Slashdot [slashdot.org], they pulled a PR spin, and instructed that spokesman to tell Ed that it's a hoax.
  • by Aaron England (681534) on Wednesday October 05, 2005 @09:07PM (#13726586)
    Don't you all feel bright now for bashing Microsoft? Perhaps it isn't only the editors that should check the credibility of a story?
    • An interesting possible new marketing technique, plant false article, get /. to comment, deny article, attempt to ridicule /.. We /.ers feel we can ridicule ourselves and others quite readily, with out any outside assitance at all ;-) (somehow I just can't see it taking off, making yourself a target of ridicule on purpose). If /. is so in-effective why do so many companies pay people to post/moderate on it?
    • We know /. editors don't check articles (except to make sure that they are dupes).

      However, the main point is whether or not this **really** was a hoax. Leaking a "hoax" is a great way to judge user feedback etc without getting egg on your face.

    • by baryon351 (626717) on Wednesday October 05, 2005 @11:35PM (#13727265)
      > Perhaps it isn't only the editors that should check the credibility of a story?

      Everyone should check the credibility of what they read, for sure. A good friend of mine wrote a comical story on her blog at the beginning of this year about macintoshes getting intel upgrades [danaquarium.com]. Remember this was before steve jobs let out the big news. Then in June when steve admitted it was true, someone submitted the story to slashdot [slashdot.org]. Then the world picked it up, and it was featured on engadget, the inquirer, hundreds of blogs, and within two weeks had made it to two US radio station broadcasts and was printed as a center piece in one Australian nationwide newspaper. The journalist at The Australian lost his job over it and a california radio news guy only just escaped with his.

      The kicker was nobody wrote to her to check the origins of the story, not one solitary person until Media Watch [abc.net.au], an Australian media watchdog television show contacted her to find out the reality behind the story in The Australian.

      Tens of news sites blindly followed one another and printed what everyone else was printing. All the while many regular joes picked out it was meant for a laugh immediately.
    • by grcumb (781340) on Wednesday October 05, 2005 @11:40PM (#13727292) Homepage Journal

      "Don't you all feel bright now for bashing Microsoft?"

      Actually, I was most amused by the report that even Microsoft got fooled. Instead of thinking 'That's bullsh*t - we would never do that!' they ran around trying to find out whose business group was responsible for it. Only when they couldn't get anyone to corroborate did they decide that it was untrue.

      Apparently even Microsoft thinks this is the kind of thing Microsoft would do. 8^)

      • Hoaxes are much more funny when they are somewhat improbably or ironic in some way. When I first saw this story, I was a bit surprised that Microsoft would come out with this kind of technology considering that Microsoft has not in the past developed any form of physical media - they have mostly been a software company. OTOH, it wasn't that long ago that they got into the hardware business and Microsoft clearly has enough money, industry influence, etc. that they could develop a single play DVD format.

        It i
      • Are achieved when the lie is plausible. And a behemoth of an organization is always slow to respond. You can compare any large organization to a garbage can! Lyndon et al have discussed this model for explaining strange behaviour of large organizations. http://choo.fis.utoronto.ca/mgt/DM.garbage.html [utoronto.ca]

        Basically change must be incremental for it too succeed in a garbage can.

    • There was at least one comment in the previous story that said "um no, this isn't true".

      It was probably modded down.
    • You're right. Everyone just jumped on the opportunity to attack Microsoft. It's not like they would have ridiculed some random company [flexplay.com] that came up with the idea of disposable DVDs.

      Oh, wait [slashdot.org]...
  • Ummm.... (Score:5, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday October 05, 2005 @09:07PM (#13726588)
    Slashdot? propagating rumors? noooooooooooo..... must be some other blog....
    • Re:Ummm.... (Score:3, Interesting)

      by kesuki (321456)
      I can't believe anyone who gets the posts up in the first 10 minutes of an article being posted haasn't had time to fully fact check either ;) i mean it's the INTERNET it must be true!

      I've written like a journal and several journal posts and main page posts all asserting numerous facts, and even with fact checking (which i normally skip) i got loads of stuff wrong ;) heck one thing i got wrong BECAUSE i Tried to fact check it int a 'hurry' and read cyanobacteria as bacteria. and didn't put it into context.
  • by Infonaut (96956) <infonaut@gmail.com> on Wednesday October 05, 2005 @09:08PM (#13726593) Homepage Journal
    I can understand bloggers screwing it up, but Thurrot, for all his annoyances, is supposedly a professional journalist.

    • by CyricZ (887944) on Wednesday October 05, 2005 @09:14PM (#13726640)
      I find it's difficult to trust any "journalist". Take the complete failure of the journalistic trade before and during the ongoing war in Iraq, for instance. That's proof enough that the vast majority of journalists aren't qualified to perform their job.

      Unlike engineering or medicine, for instance, there is no penalty for those journalists who fail to do their job properly. The complete lack of accountability had resulted in most mainstream newspapers, magazines and television news programs being nothing but farcery.

      • by Infonaut (96956) <infonaut@gmail.com> on Wednesday October 05, 2005 @11:30PM (#13727240) Homepage Journal
        Just dispense with TV if you want to find 'em.

        The New York Times [nytimes.com] has had its problems, but their reporters are some of the best in the business, and while there is an editorial slant, it isn't extreme. The Atlantic [theatlantic.com] provides good monthly material, and The Economist [economist.com] does so on a weekly basis. Those are my picks for daily, weekly, and monthly news, but there are other sources. The Christian Science Monitor [csmonitor.com] is a great daily paper, for example. You may agree or disagree with my picks, but the profession of journalism isn't dead, and good sources of news are available.

        I would also advance the notion that just because the editorial bias of a newspaper is disagreeable to you doesn't mean that the organization is corrupt. Newspapers are run by people, and people sometimes make mistakes. Note that during the runup to the Iraq invasion, The Atlantic provided excellent coverage and made many warnings that the Administration's plans were misguided. To me that is proof that following only one news source is a bad idea. You have to read from more than one source, whose biases you know, and make your own assessments from there.

        I realize that it's de rigeur to bash on the news media, whether you're attacking from the Right or the Left, but the media is a business, and it gives people what they want. Americans need to take responsibility for at least some of the sorry state of our media. We have consistently voted in politicians who allowed the media conglomerates more and more power. We watch trash like Fox News. We read USA Today. That's not proof of a lack of credible journalism. It's proof that we're lazy.

        • The New York Times has had its problems, but their reporters are some of the best in the business, and while there is an editorial slant, it isn't extreme.

          Wasn't the Times one of the biggest cheerleaders for the Iraq invasion and the WMD nonsense? We've had so many amazing journalistic failures during the past eight years, even from the Times, that it is really hard to believe that the journalists anywhere are doing their job correctly enough. Especially with the lack of any real public accountability for t

      • What? That's nothing. You should'a seen 'em egg on the Spanish-American war. (Which by the way, our modern ironclads totally r0x0r3d their antequated wooden galleys)

        There is a penalty for journalists who fail to do their job properly. It's called a 'pulitzer' (take that hearst)

        But you can't blame them. They're not content to sit on the sidelines and tell people things they didn't know. (unless they're reporting about starving people or something) They want to be part of the story. Just watch a pres
      • True. Just looking at the German BILD (AFAIK the most widely read newspaper in Europe) shows you that journalists have no accountability. The BILD is making hidden advertisements for companies whose managers happen to be in the publisher's supervisory board. They print big stories with titles like "The murderer of $VICTIM was found" or "This pig has killes $VICTIM" when the police have officially announced that they only have the prime suspect and that it's ot clear whether he was guilty. In the last ten ye
      • The modern purpose of news and media companies is to sell viewers/listerners/whatever to their advertisers, not actually provide any news.
    • is supposedly a professional journalist

      Shhhh! We don't talk about those things here!
    • by HD Webdev (247266) on Wednesday October 05, 2005 @09:39PM (#13726763) Homepage Journal
      Maybe he's smoking Crack these days.

      I can't believe that he not only heard about this and didn't laugh so hard that he couldn't see through the tears, but he also repeated obvious hoax as serious business.

      The overwhelming majority of people will not purchase a concrete item that expires after one use especially when it comes to the Almighty Idiot Box. (think 'my precious, my precious' and what behavioral changes happen to most people when the remote control doesn't work)

      Even if they might possibly fall for that on Planet Stupid, it's not likely that they'd buy a second DVD player as well just to have compatibility for those self-destructing DVDs.
    • by xmas2003 (739875) * on Wednesday October 05, 2005 @09:45PM (#13726781) Homepage
      Christmas Lights webcam hoax [komar.org] ran from 2002 to 2004 until I outed myself. I can tell you from first hand experience that the fact checking of the mass media leaves a bit to be desired ... and that is being generous. A noteable exception was the Wall Street Journal - it was actually hard to convince 'em that the hoax was really a hoax - they were (rightfully so) concerned about a double-dupe ... too bad this /. story doesn't appear to have that element.

      Having said all that, do you think it is "real" this time?!? ;-) [komar.org]

  • phew (Score:4, Insightful)

    by the-amazing-blob (917722) on Wednesday October 05, 2005 @09:08PM (#13726598) Journal
    I'm very glad that this was a hoax. It's a total waste to make disposable dvd's. Major environmental hazard, since no one would dispose correctly. Unless they also used the biodegradable (did I spell that right?) stuff I read about a while ago.

    In Soviet Russia, hoax spread you!

    • Re:phew (Score:2, Insightful)

      I think this is one of those cases where "don't believe everything you read" is an important lesson. This should serve as a reminder next time one of gets an e-mail saying "drop everything and send us your credit card number before your computer explodes" that we should probably check it out before assuming that just because our computer told us so, it must be true. As for the whole "disposable DVD" idea - maybe we could recycle some AOL CDs and put those to new use? ^_^
      • I think this is one of those cases where "don't believe everything you read" is an important lesson.

        Also, Don't believe everything you think.

    • I thought there really was an attempt at a limited-play DVD, just not from Microsoft. It relied on a dye that activates once played, and that dye turns black in a few days. Still, it was a bad idea. I'd think that Video On Demand would be a better way to go.
    • It's a total waste to make disposable dvd's. Major environmental hazard, since no one would dispose correctly. Unless they also used the biodegradable...

      The mentality that "if its biodegradable it's ok" is a fallacy, as the current landfill strategy (here in the US anyways) is to pack tightly and bury it. NOTHING biodegrades in those conditions (insufficent oxygen and water); they've dug up bananna peels from the 70's. Plastics do degrade though, just not by microbes. All it takes is some concentrated
      • by gatzke (2977)
        Exactly. Put a layer of dirt on top and you have a nice, new hippee-friendly hill to grow plants and trees on.

        Sure, the chemicals / heavy metals can be a bitch when the landfill leaches into groundwater, but if that doesn't happen you can still enjoy your new hill.
    • This is only "sort of" a hoax. Yes, self-destructing DVDs a lá DivX are a hoax, but note carefully how Microsoft phrased their response.

      MPEG2 streams cannot self-destruct in this way, but the option has been available for quite some time for material encoded in windows media, which just so happens to be the format for HD-DVD. So, while self-destructing DVDs are a hoax, self-destructing HD-DVDs are part of the design specification, whether it is marketed that way or not.

      The problem with this? Now that
  • What a guy. Anyway, I'm still waiting for his Part 2 to the OS X Tiger vs. Windows Vista Beta comparison that was on here a while ago. At the bottom of his comparison [winsupersite.com] it reads:

    In part 2 of my comparison of Windows Vista Beta 1 and Mac OS X 10.4 "Tiger," I will examine the security, networking and power management features of the two operating systems.

    Well, I'm curious about that! I hope he didn't just forget about it...

    Anyway, on topic, I don't see any mention of this story on his site [winsupersite.com] anymore, so he

  • Uh, so this is just another instance of Microsoft vaporware?

  • by funkstick (887133) on Wednesday October 05, 2005 @09:14PM (#13726632)
    The fact that so many people believed it leads me to believe that we will still see another single use DVD format one day, dispite the failure of Circuit City's Divx.
    • Tinfoil-hat response: they leaked the story to sound out what the public reaction to such a format would be.
    • I hope we do see another version, if it were done right.

      If it didn't require extra equipment or any kind of "call home" and if the disks were environmentally friendly (or, easier - had a deposit to encourage people to recycle them properly) and the price were right, yes, I'd like to see that.

      Why? Because I don't like having to remember to return things and I don't like feeling like I'm under any time pressure at all (even if it is something "gentle" like "Keep it as long as you want") to watch recreational
  • Ummm.... (Score:2, Funny)

    by blackholepcs (773728)
    Isn't saying that a story about a Microsoft "Innovation" is a hoax a redundant statement?

    /end troll

    Seriously though, think about it. It is. ;)
  • That the fake story about Microsoft's nonexistant plans to sell crippled media hardware to computers might be confused with Microsoft's REAL plans to sell crippled media SOFTWARE.

    Got it now.

  • by Doc Ruby (173196) on Wednesday October 05, 2005 @09:26PM (#13726697) Homepage Journal
    Hey, now what am I going to spend that million dollars on, that I won from Bill Gates when I sent on the 1 millionth copy of the chain email he sent me?
  • Hoax and profit (Score:3, Interesting)

    by deodato (64774) on Wednesday October 05, 2005 @09:27PM (#13726703)
    Maybe the submitter, Auckland Map, was trying to Google Bomb his way up the search results and generate traffic to his AdSense site?
  • My *guess* is that someone got the story wrong. My *guess* is that Microsoft wants to use its one-time-only DRM capability with the HD DVD in conjunction with Intels effort to 'get the data onto the server'. I think by the time the story made its way around the campfire it was modified.
  • no way! (Score:2, Funny)

    by syrinx (106469)
    Slashdot posted an unconfirmed story?? No way! Next thing you know, someone will be telling me that most people who post to Slashdot don't read the articles!
  • There is a major down side to the speed with which information can spread on the internet. I'm not talking about blogs or rumor mills, discussion groups or chain emails. I'm talking about overzealous journalists. Get that rumor out there! I've got the scoop! Damned be the sources!

    I have lost a lot of respect for Paul Thurrott (did I have any?). I read his article, and he never names a source... never says how he came to this information. Did he have inside information from a source at Microsoft? It s
  • by The Amazing Fish Boy (863897) on Wednesday October 05, 2005 @09:39PM (#13726759) Homepage Journal
    Microsoft originally designed a single-play DVD. That much is true. It also had a new case. However, as time went by, they had to drop a number of features. The first to go was the 'DVD' part. Then they dropped the 'single-play' part. Now they just have a new case full of nothing.
  • You know...this was a pretty elaborate hoax...yes, it was debunked quickly, but the fact that they have no idea how this rumor got started, and that it is clearly pure flamebait got me thinking...

    Since MS has such a good PR team, would it be so hard to imagine that people are initiating some Counter PR (read: pure lies) in order to try to generate some negative press about MS (like they need the help)?

    I mean, just LOOK at all the negative comments they've received and how many websites picked this up. Real

  • This has shaken my faith in the media to its core. I don't think I'll ever be able to look at the National Enquirer or The O'Reilly Factor ever again. I don't think my underworked heart can take the potential let down.
  • Bullshit (Score:2, Funny)

    by strcmp (908668)
    Anyone remember when they tried to convince us that dihydrogen monoxide [dhmo.org] was a hoax too?
    • Re:Bullshit (Score:3, Informative)

      by Gleng (537516)
      Haha, from the site:

      "What is DHMO?

      Dihydrogen Monoxide, or DHMO, is a colorless and odorless chemical that kills or maims thousands each year, primarily through accidental inhalation."

      Brilliant. :)
  • welcome our careless rumor spreading overlords :-P
  • So wait... (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Pichu0102 (916292)
    Single-play DVDs a hoax? Yeah, it doesn't sound too likely either. Most everyone I know have incredibly old DVD players, and how would one use DVDs work on those? It obviously wouldn't, because it wasn't a standard when everyone got them. In other words, it would be incredibly ineffective to develop such single-play DVDs, because older players wouldn't understand it.
  • by CanSpice (300894) on Wednesday October 05, 2005 @10:02PM (#13726861) Homepage
    Given that Slashdot was one of the "news" sites that perpetuated this myth, why aren't we seeing any kind of retraction or apology from the Slashdot editors that they screwed up in not fact-checking, especially on the original story? Would it be so hard for one of them to amend that story with a link to this one saying "sorry, this report isn't true"?
  • Doesn't matter, (Score:3, Interesting)

    by NullProg (70833) on Wednesday October 05, 2005 @10:05PM (#13726873) Homepage Journal
    "It appears to be confusing an existing feature within Windows Media DRM that allows for single-play of promotional digital material. This has been an option for content owners to use for some time for the Windows Media format - it does not apply to MPEG2 content found on DVDs."

    Hollywood+Microsoft == you don't decide on how to view/listen to what you legally purchased/downloaded. You can't transfer your media to another non-MS device. Why do you Windows users still insist on using the Windows Media Player(TM) format?

    For the slow thinkers. What do you think the "existing feature within Windows Media DRM" option does?

    Just curious...
    Enjoy,
  • by WidescreenFreak (830043) on Wednesday October 05, 2005 @10:19PM (#13726924) Homepage Journal
    Although I'm sure that the Microsoft bit was a hoax, as far back as 2000 a company called Spectradisc, which has since been acquired by Flexplay [flexplay.com], was actively working on a clear, chemical layer that would discolor when struck by the laser from the DVD player thus making the disc a single-play. They claim that their target market was for groups like the Academy Awards or those who want to offer promo material while preventing distribution or something like "pizza and a DVD", allowing the DVD to be viewed once.

    Since then, Flexplay has used similar technology to discolor DVDs 48 hours after the case is open. In this case, the disc is sealed in an airtight container. When it comes in contact with oxygen, is begins the discoloration process to where it's unreadable in about 48 hours. Disney released several movies under the "EZ-D" label using this technology. It's the Circuit City DIVX scam in a new package.

    I don't know if Flexplay is still pursuing the single-play DVD concept, but since they bought SpectraDisc they obviously have all of the research that SpectraDisc might have already done.
    • "They claim that their target market was for groups like the Academy Awards or those who want to offer promo material while preventing distribution or something like "pizza and a DVD", allowing the DVD to be viewed once. "

      that is actually a great marketing idea, and a good use for single play DVDs.

      Yes, some people will rip it, but those are in the minority. It would be a way to sell DVDs.

  • by iroll (717924) on Wednesday October 05, 2005 @10:22PM (#13726947) Homepage
    OK, they aren't "single-play," but disposable DVD's have been around for YEARS. This was the first hit on Google:

    wired news, 2003 [wired.com]

    I saw these for sale in a convinience store (Circle-K) TWO YEARS AGO. I haven't seen (noticed?) them lately, so they certainly didn't blow up in sales, but for heaven's sake: what are all of you smoking! Doesn't anybody read? (I'm not even talking about the article, I'm talking about tech news in general!) You guys call yourselves nerds? I can't believe all of these people are "up in arms" about a product that's been around and already failed in the marketplace. The only "hoax" is the idea that it was Microsoft; in fact, it was the arguably equally evil Disney that came up with this one.
  • Paul Thurrott reprinted the story without giving credit to the original source.

    WTF?

    Paul, please slap yourself for me. Now don't steal others' work again. Thanks.
    • He may not have credited it (and given it was false, it's debatable if that's even worthwhile, though it probably would have HELPED his credibility to blame the origin on someone else!) but he definitely did not reprint it. RBFA (with B = both ;) and you can see Paul's is just a cheesy gossip-column quality summary, not a "reprint". The /. OP was fairly misleading on that...
  • by slashname3 (739398) on Wednesday October 05, 2005 @10:32PM (#13727001)
    "Story posted on /. is hoax!"

    Why is this a surprse to anyone? All of the major news media got most of the facts wrong on the Superdome incident after the Katrina hurricane. And that was a story that really mattered!

    And anyone that takes what is published on /. as real news better learn to get used to being taken advantage of. News stories are an indication that something may have taken place. But don't count on the actual details being anything close to correct. How many times do you need to let Times reporters and national news casters lie to you before you realize this? And now you can add /. to the list of information sources that must be suspect.

    Ask anyone that has direct first hand information on a news story that has been reported on just how many facts on their incident were reported correctly. I doubt that any story is ever reported 100% correctly.

    And what is the deal with newscasters becoming part of the story instead of just reporting what is going on? News on TV has become nothing more than another entertainment show. "If it bleeds it leads!" The talking heads are full of themselves making important sounding noises, rolling their eyes, and making incredulous sounds on stories they obviously have strong opinions on. Add that to them only reporting the portions of a story they agree with or make people they don't like look bad, why do so many people believe them still? And they get to do this with no over sight. So Dan Rather retired a little early over that misunderstanding. The other talking heads have picked up the slack.

    And while we are at it what the hell is the deal with Major League Baseball? Why they hell can't they set a no tolerance policy for steroid/drug use? One time and that player is banned. Why do they try these half measures giving they multiple times to try to get around the rules? [sorry, that last part just slipped out...]
  • by swschrad (312009) on Wednesday October 05, 2005 @10:36PM (#13727015) Homepage Journal
    called it DIVX, sold three disks and ten players, and folded. didn't help circuit city one bit, the principal money behind it, and curiously, the only place that sold those doomed discs of death. disney tried it again last year, bombed. the market doesn't want bs in a box. stop trying to sell it to us.
  • Uh-huh (Score:4, Funny)

    by jav1231 (539129) on Wednesday October 05, 2005 @10:42PM (#13727045)
    Balmer: "ARGH!" (tosses chair, breaks glass, rips off tie) "I will OWN THE MEDIA MARKET! I WILL KILL THEM ALL! So, what did they think of our single-play DVD?"
    Assistant: "Uh...they laughed, Sir."
    Balmer: "Oh!...Ummm...Okay...well...uh...let's play it as a hoax."
    Assistant: "Yes, Sir. New chair, Sir?"
    Balmer: "That would be nice, and some decaf!"
  • by failedlogic (627314) on Wednesday October 05, 2005 @11:00PM (#13727119)
    From the thread info:
    "In fact, the original story sparked a flurry of e-mails around Microsoft as people in different groups tried to figure out where on earth this story came from. After the head-scratching stopped, a spokesmen told me, they concluded that the story was not true."

    If it takes this much effort for one of the largest companies to come up with an answer to a seemingly simple question (let alone an IT company which sells software to orgnise information), it should cause us to re-think how we all organise business information. They should have had an answer in a few minutes (not) what seems to be several hours of communication between middle and upper management. Microsoft is not alone. I've worked for several large companies (one of which is a major market leader). Each time a "policy" or "product" question came up it would take hours or days to find out. Microsoft is not immune to this.
    • People do the oddest things. Lots of people are really unpredictable.

      Without defending any particular company, in general, if "Bob from company X said Blah"... how long do you think it should take company X to confirm or deny it?

      a) if company X has 10 employees?
      b) if company X has 100 employees?
      c) if company X has 1000 employees?
      d) if company MSFT has 61000 employees?

      If it takes this much effort for one of the largest companies to come up with an answer to a seemingly simple question...

      Of cou

  • by toupsie (88295) on Wednesday October 05, 2005 @11:04PM (#13727137) Homepage
    Slashdot has only run the story once. If the editors dupe the article, then you know it's genuine. A lot of you gripe about dupe posts but at least you know the story is real the second time. It's a feature, not a bug...
  • ...is that Microsoft sues the pants of /. for being so irresponsible.
  • by Shanep (68243) on Wednesday October 05, 2005 @11:20PM (#13727209) Homepage
    I was a witness in a court case. I stated my observations absolutely honestly and without bias. Anyone from either side of the case should have been able to see that my duty was to the court and that my own integrity was very important to me.

    Somehow some idiot journalist did not see this, however. Through seemingly selective reporting and creative "quoting", I was somehow a bad guy. That story was then copied verbatim across many internet and print news outlets and it was even interpretted and "built on" by other idiot or perhaps dishonest journalists.

    I no longer have any respect at all for the average journalist. They very rarely understand the issues they are reporting and sensationalize to the point of out-and-out lie. They do no favours to the subjects of their stories (except for the subjects who may be rich affiliates of course) and no favours to the general public who believe their lies.
  • I don't think this affects anybody's perception of Microsoft.

    I'm sure we all know that Microsoft will do just about anything to dominate a market.

    The fact that so many people believed it, without question, goes to show what people really think of Microsoft.
  • Well, come on (Score:4, Interesting)

    by ajs318 (655362) <sd_resp2 AT earthshod DOT co DOT uk> on Thursday October 06, 2005 @04:33AM (#13728144)
    Copy prevention is mathematically impossible. Not just supremely difficult, like cracking RSA encryption; actually impossible. Like perpetual motion machines or faster-than-light travel. And limited-read media, by virtue of the fact they are as susceptible to copying as any other media now known or ever to be invented, do nothing to prevent illegal copying.

    There was a bar that I used to drink in, back in my student days, which had a juke box. An NSM Prestige 160 if you care about these things; a lot like a Seeburg inside. It cost 10 pence a record {remember records?} and it was always playing. Once a fortnight, the amusement machine company came out to change the records. Well, one time, not only did they put in a whole load of new records, they also cranked up the price from 10p to 20p. And from that day on, the bar was like a Wetherspoons.

    I guess the point I'm trying to make is that if DVDs cost £3 each instead of £20, then more people would be more prepared to buy them; and they'd actually sell enough copies to make more of a profit. Instead of waiting to see if one of my friends bought a movie I would like to watch {in a kind of "chicken" game, where the loser is the one who actually buys the disc and then has either to lend it out to everyone else, thereby risking the disc becoming trashed; or invite them over for a viewing, thereby risking an enormous cost in drink, drugs, broken furniture and freaked-out neighbours} we could all just buy our own copy of the disc, and not have to worry about the intricate politics of the situation. Likewise, there would be next to no market in "piracy", since the margins involved would be ridiculously small. Back in 1998-99, a "pirated" music CD cost £3 {handwritten track listing, labelled with indelible marker} or £4 {inkjet printed cover artwork and label}. Writers were rare, not much faster than 4* or 8* and hardly anybody had ADSL. As a cottage industry, it was fine for awhile but it soon became unsustainable.
  • Oh, *PLEASE* (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Khyber (864651) <techkitsune@gmail.com> on Thursday October 06, 2005 @04:36AM (#13728152) Homepage Journal
    We all knew this was a hoax. The typical /. response is "Microsoft BAD"

    What nobody bothered to do (EDITORS) was check up on the story. The fact is, another company (can't remember whom) tried this same thing. Guess what? It DIDN'T WORK. The mass market said "NO" and with that simple bit of info from the past, why would Microsoft try doing it again? Hell, even they should know if it can be read once from a DVD, it could be copied ONCE, burned ONCE onto another disc and WATCHED FOREVER.

    What we have here is a serious problem with Slashdot editors not checking up on stories, like REAL EDITORS DO. (Minus Fox News, which is FAR from 'Fair and Balanced.')

    Give me a break, Slashdot. Your moderators mod me as a troll but your own editors can't even spot this simple fake? Yes, even I responded to the last story about this horse-hockey, and all I did was mention the above tactic of read/rip once, burn once, play forever. As a matter of fact, someone else in the comments before this story posted that IT WAS BULLSHIT. After being so thoroughly debunked by a simple (and unmodded) commentator, why the hell is this news to begin with? Play once DVD? *Penn and Teller Quote* BULL-SHIT.

    Nothing for you to see here, move along. You should've all had the brains to figure this one out.
  • Of course the latest conspiracy theory could be that it was an intentional hoax by the entertainment industry to test market reactions to the concept without having to take responsibility for suggesting the concept if the market reaction was bad.

    My reaction would be good if the a choice in formats was made available with an appropriate difference in price. Say $2 for a single play dvd for something I know I only want to see once.

    However there would be the environmental cost of throwing single play DVDs in
  • it is not uncommon for the left hand to not know what the right hand is doing. I will wait and see, this could be interesting...
  • A recent article on how a Slashdot story was a hoax was itself proven to be a hoax...
  • "a hoax can spread just as fast as a genuine news story. That's the lesson from the bogus story published in an obscure UK business magazine yesterday that claimed Microsoft is about to unleash a new single-play DVD format.

    Yeah. Duh. I knew this lesson regarding hoaxes already. Why the fuck is it that so few people in the general news media and populace seem to understand this though? That's the part that bugs me.

    CLUE: Whatever you do, never trust information that comes from only one source if t

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