Pixel Envy

Written by Nick Heer.

“DRM Is a Religion”

Ever since I linked to Watts Martin’s stance on HTML5 video DRM, I’ve been questioning my position on it. I generally agree with this sentiment, expressed perfectly by John Gruber in April, 2012:

DRM is a religion for old-growth media executives. Rational thought could lead them to this solution, but won’t, because they’re starting with an irrational bedrock assumption: that there can exist a technical solution to defeat piracy. Their belief in DRM is a matter of faith, not logic.

But I also think DRM is excusable in cases of streaming or rental content. Things I buy should not have DRM; things I rent (or stream, or borrow, or whatever) can be DRM’d up the wazoo without complaint. The latter are sold under a completely different contract, and expectations of user “freedom” should match.