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Cory Doctorow on DRM

As if I needed yet another reason to never buy an iPod… Here’s a great article from Cory Doctorow on Apple’s copy protection and why it’s a bad model. How many iTunes customers have really thought through each 99-cent purchase and realize that the song they just bought will only work on the Apple platform? As he notes, if you build up a library of iTunes over a few years and decide to switch to Creative or another product, you can toss all those 99-cent songs out the window.

Btw, in an earlier post I mentioned I was weighing the pros and cons of a recently purchased Pioneer Inno XM Radio device. A couple of months later I can honestly say I’m totally addicted to the darn thing. Yes, the reception can be spotty as a portable device, but I’ve recorded so many tracks on it now that I can easily switch to MP3 mode and listen anywhere I want, including on an airplane or in the middle of an office building. Although I don’t “own” all those songs that live on the Inno, I don’t really care because I consider them a bonus for the $14/month I pay for the service. In other words, I’ll never pay Apple $.99 for a song but I’m thrilled to record songs for later playback on my Inno as long as XM doesn’t do something stupid like charge me extra for that feature.


Eric Allam

You can always burn the songs a CD, then burn them back into MP3, poof, DRM gone.

Joe Wikert

Right, and Cory Doctorow points that out in his article, but that's still a hassle, as he points out. All the MP3's I've put on my Creative player can easily be copied to my PC or another device without the extra steps of converting them to audio files and then to MP3's.


The DRM's poof-gone - just like your time, a bit of audio fidelity, and your blank CD if you couldn't use a rewritable (something I've never gotten to work reliably in iTunes). What a bargain!

Your next challenge: Try to do all of this, 10 years from now, with a rediscovered backup DVD containing music you're nostalgic to hear after a cross-country move.

Cecil Vortex

I almost didn't buy an ipod for that very reason. But then I decided my beef was with the itunes sales model, not the ipod player.

So now I buy old fashioned CDs and rip 'em to my ipod. No DRM issues, easy enough to turn them into MP3s (or re-rip if some better format comes along) and move them to another player at some point down the line.....

This is my 3rd MP3 player, and I definitely like the ipod interface and the library piece of the itunes system better than the samsung and iriver players/systems I was using before.

Joe Wikert

Ah, my old buddy Cecil. How are you? Done any good forecasting lately?... You're obviously not alone when it comes to not filling your iPod with iTunes. I can't remember where I saw this, but if you do the math, there have only been something like 2 or 3 songs per iPod sold downloaded from iTunes. I'm sure some iPod owners have dozens and dozens of iTunes songs on their player. But, it's clear that a lot of iPod owners have zero and are going the same route as you.

cecil vortex

What is this "forecasting"? Something to with fishing technique mayhaps?

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