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Comment Re:Digital Rights? (Score 1) 186

And those rights, per the industry are to go "forever plus one day".

Excessive copyright duration is a real problem, for sure, but it's a completely different issue to DRM. Most works shared illegally online are very recent, and would still have been covered by even the shortest duration of copyright from when the idea first started. Most DRM is disrupting the sharing of those works, not things that were created 50+ years ago.

Comment Re:DRM (Score 1) 186

If it's DRM on something that was presented as a permanent sale, I'm inclined to agree.

If it's DRM to enforce temporary access when that was known to be part of the deal up-front (PPV, subscription libraries, and so on) then I think it's a different matter.

Comment Re:Digital Rights? (Score 1) 186

That assumes you're talking about the kind of mass market content that is usually available and easy to find on a torrent. There's a huge long tail where that isn't the case, and you're making a big assumption that someone who chooses to pirate will easily be able to find an alternative source.

Comment Re:makes suing security researchers a feature ... (Score 1) 186

Vendors can now criminalize bug reporting and whistle-blowing.

Don't you think that's a problem with a legal system that permits it, rather than with DRM itself, though? After all, the W3C has no legislative power and no authority to say who gets to sue someone or when. Given the nature of EME, it's hard to see how they could incorporate robust protections for anyone even if they wanted to.

As an aside, just because someone calls themselves a security researcher, that doesn't necessarily make them a positive influence or whatever they want to do OK, so I'm not sure some sort of blanket immunity from anything is necessarily a good idea anyway. The details very much matter in this sort of situation.

Comment Re:Digital Rights? (Score 2) 186

This is about technical mechanisms that restrict how you use your own machines.

Or it's about technical mechanisms that restrict how you access content someone else provides.

There are always two sides to these issues, but we're only human and naturally tend to see things first from our own point of view.

Comment Re:DRM is necessary to stop piracy (Score 1) 186

You lost me. Why should I "keep paying" to "keep enjoying" something?

Because that was the deal you agreed to when you signed up. Why did you have to return a video to the rental store instead of keeping it? After all, you paid for it.

Not all commercial agreements involve a permanent sale, and sometimes a different model involving temporary access at a lower price might benefit everyone involved.

Comment Re:Digital Rights? (Score 1) 186

You don't have to use any of the new stuff, though. The "others" you mention add to what we had before. They don't replace it. You are free not to use e-commerce sites, or to stream music or movies, or to host your stuff in "the cloud". No-one is stopping you from restricting your browsing activity to personal or otherwise freely available websites, just like what you could access before. You are perfectly entitled to run a browser with JS disabled, ads blocked, and no plugins (including anything related to EME) if you don't want to use sites that rely on such technologies or feel that they compromise your security or privacy in unacceptable ways.

However, none of us is entitled say to everyone else, including the millions if not billions of people who find these new alternatives useful, that they can't have what they want because it's different to what we want. Also, none of us is entitled to tell those providing content that they must provide it in a certain format that we find convenient.

Comment Re:DRM is necessary to stop piracy (Score 2) 186

This mostly seems to be a combination of paranoia and slippery slope fallacies, and for someone who wants to see "proof and lots of it", your own argument is remarkably devoid of any supporting evidence.

I suggest to you that the existence of services like Netflix is beneficial to a great many people, who now get to enjoy more content at lower cost than they otherwise would have. I also suggest that services like Netflix would be much less practical without DRM, since obviously anyone could just sign up for whatever the minimum period is these days, download huge amounts of unprotected content to keep them going for a while, and then immediately cancel their subscription so they don't have to keep paying even though they're still enjoying the content. And finally, I suggest that the average Netflix user doesn't even know what DRM is or "experience" it at all.

Comment Re:Digital Rights? (Score 0) 186

The Internet isn't what it used to be. It has been taken over and changed. Maybe should be called the commercialnet, or spynet or something of the sort.

The irony of your comment is that the Web has become dominated by ads and privacy intrusions in large part because people using it weren't willing to pay for stuff but still wanted the stuff. It turns out that people who make good stuff still have rent to pay, and that equivalent content and services don't always magically appear from within the community if no-one pays for them.

I'm sure that has nothing to do with a discussion about copyright, infringement, and alternative business models that become practical with DRM, though. Nope, no parallels there at all.

Comment Re:Digital Rights? (Score 1) 186

Then you're only looking at mainstream, mass market, fixed content. A great deal of content created commercially isn't actually in that category.

Also, it makes a big difference what the "digital format" is. Sure, if you're providing fixed content that someone can play at home, then if nothing else you're vulnerable to the analog hole if you're willing to accept the drop in quality, and for the next Avengers movie or Taylor Swift album or whatever, someone among the millions of interested people is going to bother doing that. But there are online DRM schemes that are pretty effective at preventing casual copying at full quality these days, which is probably one of the reasons content creators are so keen to move in that direction for distribution.

Comment Re:Digital Rights? (Score 3, Insightful) 186

Most DRM isn't expected to prevent 100% of copies indefinitely. Usually it's intended to deter and/or delay casual copying, and in that, it is often quite successful these days. This is something that almost invariably gets overlooked in the "DRM never works" posts that will no doubt be filling this Slashdot discussion within minutes.

Comment Re:Digital Rights? (Score 1, Insightful) 186

Smart people don't care what it stands for. This issue always going to be about balancing the rights of content providers and the rights of content consumers, or about balancing the restrictions on the same parties, depending on how you choose to look at it. What matters is finding a reasonable balance, whatever you call any technology or laws or whatever that are used to promote it.

Comment Re:DRM (Score 3, Insightful) 186

As with almost all technology, it depends on context.

DRM can be abused to lock up content far in excess of normal copyright protections.

DRM also makes new and useful business models practical, giving us modern replacements for old school rental stores from the likes of Netflix and Spotify, which obvious work out for a lot of people.

Submission + - SpaceX disapointed in lack of NASA Mars funding & looks for own landing site

frank249 writes: Elon Musk says that NASA legislation 'changes almost nothing about what NASA is doing. Existing programs stay in place and there is no added funding for Mars,' Musk is absolutely correct on two counts. First, an "authorization" bill does not provide funding. That comes from appropriations committees. Secondly, while Congress has been interested in building rockets and spacecraft, it is far less interested in investing in the kinds of technology and research that would actually enable a full-fledged Mars exploration program.

In other news, Spacenews reports that SpaceX has been working with NASA to identify potential landing sites on Mars for both its Red Dragon spacecraft starting in 2020 and future human missions. SpaceX, working with scientists at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory and elsewhere, had identified several potential landing sites, including one that looks particularly promising — Arcadia Planitia. Those landing sites are of particular interest, he said, for SpaceX’s long-term vision of establishing a human settlement on Mars, but he said the company wouldn’t rule our sending Red Dragon spacecraft elsewhere on the planet to serve other customers. “We’re quite open to making use of this platform to take various payloads to other locations as well,” he said. “We’re really looking to turn this into a steady cadence, where we’re sending Dragons to Mars on basically every opportunity.” The Red Dragon spacecraft, he said, could carry about one ton of useful payload to Mars, with options for those payloads to remain in the capsule after landing or be deployed on the surface. “SpaceX is a transportation company,” he said. “We transport cargo to the space station, we deliver payloads to orbit, so we’re very happy to deliver payloads to Mars.” Fans of the book/movie "The Martian" would be happy if SpaceX does select Arcadia Planitia for their first landing site as that was the landing site of the Ares 3.

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