Internet: A Legal Right

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Re: Internet: A Legal Right

Unread postby Ranbir » Tue Oct 20, 2009 9:12 pm

It's not just a switch they could flip.


Please explain the challenges the itunes team faces in providing files without Fairplay on their store. If they wanted no DRM from the beginning, why didn't they provide it from the beginning, to artists and labels outside the big four?
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Re: Internet: A Legal Right

Unread postby James' iPhone » Tue Oct 20, 2009 9:33 pm

Because, I'll wager, that they are a business and knew that certain aspects of the DRM-free music might have to be delivered based on certain specifications and the music industry leaders would likely have a say in it. By throwing out two systems initially they are faced with the possibility of updating the previous system later, something would would be terrible to coordinate with the indies. DRM was not an issue to the majority of their customers so they avoided that whole level of complication. Now that they have settled on a standard which works for the big labels they can use it for everyone.

Apple always acts on the big picture, designs products for normal users, and rarely ever releases something unless they are confident in standing behind it. Google is the sort of company that releases small tweaks to appease small user groups. The two companies have a lot in common, but in ways the difference between them is night and day.

It would have been nice for them to do this, certainly, but that's just not how they work. Under Steve Jobs, it never has been and probably never will be. Even loyal Apple customers usually struggle to understand this.
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Re: Internet: A Legal Right

Unread postby Ranbir » Tue Oct 20, 2009 10:19 pm

And the use of proprietary software?
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Re: Internet: A Legal Right

Unread postby James » Wed Oct 21, 2009 6:57 pm

Ranbir wrote:And the use of proprietary software?

What, for FairPlay? They couldn't even keep that from being hacked. By keeping Fairplay in-house they were able to create an iTunes Store <-> Music relationship which gave them the ability to recover from any breach to their DRM standard. They couldn't have maintained anywhere near the same degree of security while licensing the technology out to other companies. It's not like any shared DRM schemes were successful anyway. All were closed-platform to some extent. In any case, they're dead now, and any new attempts to incorporate DRM in music are going to tie to a failed venture (with only the possible limited exception of subscription services).
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Re: Internet: A Legal Right

Unread postby Ranbir » Wed Oct 21, 2009 7:16 pm

Europe has always challenged proprietary software, closed systems.
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Re: Internet: A Legal Right

Unread postby James » Thu Oct 22, 2009 8:36 am

Ranbir wrote:Europe has always challenged proprietary software, closed systems.

*Shrugs* Yeah, they're good at that. But sometimes it is fair for a business to have a closed system.
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Re: Internet: A Legal Right

Unread postby Ranbir » Thu Oct 22, 2009 9:14 am

For consumer choice? In the case of the exclusive networks on the iPhone; In France, for example, it is illegal to prevent consumers to change networks if they wish after 6 months. I think US and UK were the only markets to be so permissive to such exclusivity with the latter require phones to be subsidized if on contract.
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Re: Internet: A Legal Right

Unread postby HowSwiftThySword » Thu Oct 22, 2009 4:05 pm

...at least 1 Mbps...
I'm moving to Finland :lol:
I think they've over-exaggerated the importance of the internet to actual life, many people can go just fine without it. I think to lower costs they should make payment (if they plan to make it payed) depending on how much a person uses the internet, so if someone doesn't use it they wont be paying for nothing.
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Re: Internet: A Legal Right

Unread postby James » Thu Oct 22, 2009 5:07 pm

Ranbir wrote:For consumer choice? In the case of the exclusive networks on the iPhone; In France, for example, it is illegal to prevent consumers to change networks if they wish after 6 months. I think US and UK were the only markets to be so permissive to such exclusivity with the latter require phones to be subsidized if on contract.

Oh, I agree that there are cases proprietary systems and constructs are certainly a bad things. From those I've seen in the EU, most of their battles seem legitimate. Unfortunately, they also sometimes take up fights which are anything but, and either from the wrong perspective, or a deliberately incorrect perspective in hopes of influencing the right parties (e.g. iTunes). There are also, often, consequences for their actions. Say you do not allow carriers to forge long-term contracts with the iPhone customer. Some models of the iPhone cost more than $600, and in countries where those contracts are illegal, customers pick up those costs. They don't have the option to pay, say, $200 when they know they'll be using the service anyway. Conversely, you're screwed with AT&T in the United States, and it works out only if you like the iPhone more.

What I would like to see here is a middle ground where those contracts are legal, but phones have to be unlocked once those contracts expire. A few things along those lines are in the works in the United States. Another option would be to require companies to offer unlocked phones with no contract while at the same time allowing them to offer contracts. (The contracts, by the way, are pretty important—the ETF helps to cover the company's losses in paying hundreds of dollars toward the price of your phone). It is possible to go month-to-month in the US, but a little complicated, and the methods of doing so aren't always apparent to the consumer, nor are they available to all phones.

Anyway, back to the main point. The shortsighted end of this battle is that certain agreements and closed systems actually pass savings or special features to the consumer. Opening those platforms up can strip those benefits. It is important to honor a fine line between correcting a true injustice, and trampling businesses and customers when nothing terrible is really taking place, simply out of some kind of ideology.
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Re: Internet: A Legal Right

Unread postby Ranbir » Thu Oct 22, 2009 5:33 pm

Sounds like the US has some way to go if you're talking about wanting to see phones allowed to be unlocked and enjoy greater availability of pay-as-you-go services. :?
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