Peter Purgathofer, an associate professor at Vienna University of Technology, built a Lego Mindstorms robot
that presses "next page" on his Kindle repeatedly while it faces his laptop's webcam. The cam snaps a picture of each screen and saves it to a folder that is automatically processed through an online optical character recognition program. The result is an automated means of redigitizing DRM-crippled ebooks in a clear digital format. It's clunky compared to simply removing the DRM using common software, but unlike those DRM-circumvention tools, this setup does not violate the law.
posted by SpacemanStix
on Sep 8, 2013 -
Tor/Forge, the Science Fiction and Fantasy subsidiary of Macmillan, has announced
that it is going DRM free on all of its ebooks. Mefi's own Charles Stross
shares a presentation
he recently made to executives at Macmillan that may have partially influenced this decision. Stross had previously
predicted that publishers would need to go DRM free to prevent Amazon from gaining too much power in the ebook market.
posted by bove
on Apr 24, 2012 -
Why book publishers
will give up on Digital Rights Management. Short answer: because they are more afraid of Amazon becoming a monopsony than they are of consumer piracy. I don't know if he's right, but it's an interesting discussion of the immediate future in book publishing, and the way the Kindle has changed everything.
posted by Chocolate Pickle
on Apr 21, 2012 -
, the latest installment in Lois McMaster Bujold's Vorkosigan series, is out in hardcover. Hard copies of the book also contain a CD with the text of the book... and most of the rest of the books in the series, along with a number of speeches, interviews, and essays. In keeping with Baen Books' approach to DRM and publishing (previously
), the entire thing is available for free online
posted by asterix
on Oct 29, 2010 -
High-bandwidth Digital Content Protection (HDCP)
is currently the most common form of digital transmission protection for high definition digital multimedia, requiring an unbroken chain of licensed products for content to play back for TV systems
. A possible "master key" was posted online
earlier this week, and created quite a stir around the potential of this leak or reverse engineering. Intel, who developed the initial specification
, has confirmed the validity of the "master key"
, but instead of coming up with a new protection scheme, will use "legal remedies, particularly under the DMCA (Digital Millennium Copyright Act)." In essence, the threat of legal action, rather than cryptography, is [Intel and the media companies] real tool against unapproved uses of digital content. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief
on Sep 17, 2010 -
DRM as a cloud of poison gas.
Run an illegally-downloaded prerelease version of the video game Batman: Arkham Asylum and Batman always dies in a vat of poison gas. Run the legit version once it gets released and (apparently) there won’t even be
any poison gas. (Game developers
: “[Y]ou have encountered... a hook in the copy protection, to catch out people who try and download cracked versions of the game for free. It’s not a bug in the game’s code, it’s a bug in your moral code.”)
posted by joeclark
on Sep 13, 2009 -
“You can’t roll a joint on an iPod”
or how the iPod killed the music industry. First the music biz overlooked the computer CD rom when they put copy control on cd burners. Then they eliminated the single. Shortly after that "mp3" replaced "sex" as the most popular search term. Apple has become the largest music seller largely against the wishes of the music biz, but 99 cents beats free. Yesterday Apple announced they were eliminating DRM
. The questions remains, who needs Universal Music Group, Sony BMG, Warner Music Group, and EMI, does Apple? When is Apple just going to replace them? There were rumors a year ago that they would launch a record label with Jay-Z
but that does not appear to have come to fruition.
posted by caddis
on Jan 7, 2009 -
Who would have known that that the death of DRM would come in the form of a press release
? While MP3 stores
are nothing new, with iTunes moving to a 100% DRM free catalog by the 31st of March this now cements a de facto standard of DRM free music in the marketplace. As a side effect it's now a near certainty that AAC
will become the successor of MP3
posted by Talez
on Jan 6, 2009 -
Some are calling it the "Kindle Killer".
(Demo launch video at engadget
.) Plastic Logic's new e-reader, expected to be out in the first half of 2009, does promise to offer a lot that Kindle and most other other popular e-readers don't, like a larger display, big enough to provide a newspaper or magazine layout; touch-based markup and annotation; the ability to read standard documents and other file types without conversion; (promised) Wi-Fi connectivity (including the ability to transfer documents between readers); and last but not least, a screen display that you can hit with a shoe
, and isn't that something we've all been waiting for during these tense times? [more inside]
posted by taz
on Sep 13, 2008 -
PC game Spore
was released yesterday. The 'Sim Everything' game from the creator of Sim City and The Sims takes the player from cellular growth to space colonization with several stages in between. Reviews are in
, and the consensus is that it's good but not as legendary as its scope (and multi-year development cycle) would suggest. The game's 'draconian' DRM has sparked controversy, causing Amazon users to bomb it with one-star reviews
posted by mattholomew
on Sep 8, 2008 -
The Day the Music Died The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) [...] has also been warning anyone who would listen that they should not “purchase” encrypted music from these services, since if these services go under then all that “purchased” music will no longer… what’s the word… “play”. But mostly people ignored them (and me), because, you know, Microsoft was at the center of it all, and nobody ever got fired for “buying” from Microsoft.
posted by desjardins
on May 7, 2008 -
releases his album with several payment options: $0.00 gets you 192k mp3s, and 5 bucks buys your choice of 192k or 300k mp3s, or FLAC
. All DRM free of course. Trent Reznor, who was recently sighted complaining about the insane prices
for his last album in new zealand, is to blame
. Need a taster? Saul and Trent have leaked a track
on pirate bay.
posted by fleetmouse
on Oct 29, 2007 -
The first 17 minute 'webisode' of the new science-fiction web-series Sanctuary
, starring Stargate SG-1
's Amanda Tapping (along with several other Stargate actors
) can now be viewed online, for free, at Youtube
. And although you can buy them here
for US $1.99, uploading the video to Youtube or sharing it with your friends is all completely legit, as the producers have taken a very liberal approach to DRM; specifically, there is none. To quote
creator Damian Kindler "These files are YOURS. You can do with them what you want. Drop them into iTunes. Convert them to DVD formats. Burn, rip, whatever. You bought 'em, you decide how to enjoy 'em
posted by Effigy2000
on Jun 2, 2007 -
iTunes Plus has been released.
Following EMI's announcement
that it would begin offering its entire catalog DRM-free (and a barely-averted
torpedoing of that plan), Apple has released an update to iTunes that offers DRM-free, 256kps AAC songs for $1.29. Entire albums are the same price as their DRM-laden counterparts. Those who have purchased EMI music can upgrade their files for $.30/song, $.60/album, or 30% of the album price.
Currently only EMI is on-board, but Apple is perfectly happy
to bring other labels into the DRM-free universe.
posted by mkultra
on May 30, 2007 -
Thoughts on Music
"...in a heartbeat. If the big four music companies would license Apple their music without the requirement that it be protected with a DRM, we would switch to selling only DRM-free music on our iTunes store." — Steve Jobs
posted by timeistight
on Feb 6, 2007 -
"[C]omputer design is being dictated not by electronic design rules, physical layout requirements, and thermal issues, but by the wishes of the content industry."
By deliberately breaking audio and video functionality, opening up new avenues for debilitating malware, and reversing performance gains in desktop PCs and third-party components, Peter Gutmann argues "the Vista Content Protection specification could very well constitute the longest suicide note in history."
posted by Blazecock Pileon
on Dec 23, 2006 -
New Zealand may soon implement legislation very similar to the DMCA
, if the latest draft of the Copyright Amendment Bill is passed. It would appear that the New Zealand government is about to make the same mistake made by the USA several years ago. Most specifically, they propose:
[To] introduce an offence (carrying a sentence of a fine not exceeding $150,000 or a term of imprisonment of up to 5 years, or both) for commercial dealing in devices, services, or information designed to circumvent technological protection measures
Her contact details
are available online. We have a small window of opportunity to point out the problems and unintended consequences
with similar legislation in other countries, and hopefully circumvent the same problems in New Zealand.
posted by pivotal
on Dec 6, 2006 -
"[A] recently launched music Web site that carries independent -- and mostly little-known -- artists, is trying an unusual model for selling music
. Instead of selling songs at one fixed price, the site determines prices for songs based on how frequently they're downloaded." [WSJ link
posted by pfafflin
on Oct 20, 2006 -