Bonum Certa Men Certa

DRM Spreading Like a Cancer, But It's Not Too Late to Push Back and Stop It

Video download link | md5sum 7b3c8ae3fc22e4228873d2ef4db89f68 The Digital Restrictions Management (DRM) Scourge Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 4.0



Summary: Instead of users taking control of their machines, files and processes what we're seeing is corporations trying to take control of users via their machines, files and processes; some of the latest proposals show just how far this can go unless people unite, properly organise, and push back

THE threat of Digital Restrictions Management (DRM) is far from new. It's decades in the making and in some domains -- music being one of them -- the pushback against DRM was severe enough to compel DRM proponents to reconsider, even rescind. Do not assume that DRM is "inevitable" or impossible to defeat. There are means other than boycotts to fight back. Awareness is important because it tells people which brands/products to avoid. DRM has, in some sense, gone as far as coffee machines, printers, and tractors. It's not just a software problem anymore.



"DRM has, in some sense, gone as far as coffee machines, printers, and tractors."The subject of the video above may seem "old", but it's actually quite new. It also relates to what we wrote recently about YouTube (about 20 articles). Louis Rossmann has just covered it, focusing on what this may mean to video creators like himself. Louis is getting into software from a hardware repair perspective and has learned as he has gone along. So there are gaps, but it's interesting to see his perspective too.

Even though the title might be misleading/clickbait, the following seems like a concise summary of the issue (with about 60 comments to follow):

A team of Google engineers have proposed an Operating System level security mechanism to guarantee that only officially supported browsers running with no modifications can access certain websites. proposal, hosted on GitHub does not hide their desire to kill adblockers.

Users like visiting websites that are expensive to create and maintain, but they often want or need to do it without paying directly. These websites fund themselves with ads, but the advertisers can only afford to pay for humans to see the ads, rather than robots. This creates a need for human users to prove to websites that they're human, sometimes through tasks like challenges or logins.

Considering Google's recent "security concerns" excuse for dramatically weakening AdBlock on chrome, this looks an attempt to kick their war on user choice to high gear.




Original Submission



The video above takes note of YouTube DRM, font DRM on the Web, and other forms of DRM. It also mentions Android and ChromeOS adding DRM to Linux, the kernel, and reminds people that Google has been cracking down on Invidious. In other words, Google wants to force everyone to use proprietary software to watch YouTube videos.

"We need to not only reject but openly speak out against this agenda."The video also refers back to and speaks about AM radio in cars, along with awful proposals to impose DRM on television broadcast (in the video I conflated this with radio broadcast) [1, 2, 3, 4, 5]. As some worse sites put it, e.g. [1, 2], this too is about "advertising" and it is being sold as 'security' -- the go-to excuse. Don't be misled.

We need to not only reject but openly speak out against this agenda. If this harms sales, they will change their minds. If is damages their image, they might bury such proposals before the FCC approves them. A passive population lets oligarchy do as it pleases without financial consequences.

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