[linux-elitists] More from the 1990s retro department...

Don Marti dmarti at zgp.org
Fri Feb 13 09:39:10 PST 2015


Facebook is the new AOL, Apple is the new Sony, Google
is the new Microsoft, Buzzfeed is the new Yahoo, (
http://www.theverge.com/2015/1/4/7488495/facebook-is-the-new-aol
) and "danger!  surveillance marketing!" is the new
"danger! DRM!"

Back in the 1990s, people worried about scary
boot-stamping-on-a-human-face-forever DRM.
Mandatory, everywhere, free-speech-extinguishing,
free-software-extinguishing DRM.  And the main selling
point for it was basically "if you're not for maximal
DRM, then YOU HATE ARTISTS!!!1!"

Today, even though DRM is rolling back in some
important areas (
  http://www.tor.com/blogs/2012/04/torforge-e-book-titles-to-go-drm-free
) DRM is still out there, all over the largest media
markets.  But the really scary stuff is "deprecated" (
http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/windows/desktop/dd757537%28v=vs.85%29.aspx
).  If you want to do a Fair Use clip, or create an
independent work, it's still possible.   Yes, DRM
is still evil, and yes, flawless DRM would destroy
civilization -- but in the real world it's more
like an infection that we can live with than like a
humanity-ending plague.

It turns out that the interests of DRM system
maintainers and the interests of creative people
don't actually align very well.  Hugo-winning author
Charles Stross explained it best:

  http://www.antipope.org/charlie/blog-static/2011/11/cutting-their-own-throats.html

  http://www.antipope.org/charlie/blog-static/2012/04/understanding-amazons-strategy.html

  http://www.antipope.org/charlie/blog-static/2012/04/more-on-drm-and-ebooks.html

But it's not the 1990s, it's the 2010s. And, holy
shizzle, BIG DATA IS GOING TO STOMP OUR FACE FOREVER!

Not quite.  Yes, there will be Big Data, yes direct
marketers are learning more math -- but the interests
of surveillance marketing system owners misalign with
the interests of brands and publishers, just as the
interests of DRM system owners misaligned with the
interests of creative people and their audiences.

-- 
Don Marti                    
http://zgp.org/~dmarti/
dmarti at zgp.org


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