Sony BMG in DRM battle with Apple


michaelrjohnson

macrumors 68020
Aug 9, 2000
2,174
1
53132
After reading both articles, It makes me wonder why Apple wouldn't "flick the switch." To force people to buy the titles from iTMS? I'm not sure...

I think Apple *should* make this possible in the next iTunes update.
 

pmcaleer

macrumors newbie
Jul 17, 2002
24
0
michaelrjohnson said:
After reading both articles, It makes me wonder why Apple wouldn't "flick the switch." To force people to buy the titles from iTMS? I'm not sure...

I think Apple *should* make this possible in the next iTunes update.
No way.

It's not a matter of "flicking a switch". It's a matter of supporting a competing level of DRM - Windows Media - and, as a bonus, abandoning the compact disc standard (Redbook) to further appease a power-hungry industry.

I loved this quote:

"It's just a proprietary decision by Apple to decide whether to play along or not."

Hah! Like Windows Media DRM - heck, any DRM - isn't "proprietary." This is an incredibly FUDdy device, based not in reality but in an attempt to paint Apple as "that crazy DRM lockdown company" when BMG is doing the exact same thing, just with another format.

Apple shouldn't give in. Screw 'em.
 

Gizmotoy

macrumors 65816
Nov 6, 2003
1,081
118
michaelrjohnson said:
After reading both articles, It makes me wonder why Apple wouldn't "flick the switch." To force people to buy the titles from iTMS? I'm not sure...

I think Apple *should* make this possible in the next iTunes update.
What "switch" are you advocating "flicking"? To support the WMA files Sony is pushing, Apple would have to license the technology from Microsoft. That would be a major embarrasment to a company that has their own DRM format. If you're referring to Apple licensing their DRM to others, then yes, they really should get around to that shortly. The ITMS is getting close (and is arguably already there) to becoming the music download standard, so I don't think their domination would be hindered at this point by licensing. If it is, they're not charging enough for the licenses.

Anyway, interesting to see Sony blame their incompatibility on others.
 

killmoms

macrumors 68040
Jun 23, 2003
3,722
13
Washington, DC
Honestly, Sony are the ones being "proprietary" by refusing to play along with the DRM scheme found in 75% of all MP3 players. They're just choosing to pay for one license instead of the other. I'm sure if they sat down and negotiated with Apple they'd be willing to license FairPlay for CDs.

Then again, I don't like the idea at all. Yeah, someone's gonna put it up on the web, but even with this copy protection, there's only so much that can be done in software. Eventually the protection will be cracked, and they're just turning the vast majority of honest CD buyers into criminals for wanting to have fair use of the music they purchased. Once again the record industry loses sight of the underlying problem and reacts with knee-jerk, short-term solutions that will only hurt them in the long run.
 

RichP

macrumors 68000
Jun 30, 2003
1,574
8
Motor City
If there is anything history has taught us, is that Sony loves to lock on to a proprietary format, and said format will NEVER catch on. (Betamax, MiniDisk, you could even say memory stick, etc)

Record companies ever consider CD sales may be better if CDs were not $20 dollars a piece?? If I go to the store, grab a few CDs, and the bill is suddenly close to $100, DL'ing from peer-to-peer suddenly gets more attractive. I like supporting artists, I like owning the physical CD media, and I like having the control over the quality of the music rip for iTunes. However, music prices are just getting to the point where you cant go buy music to try out, each purchase has become a financial commitment!
 

Sharewaredemon

macrumors 68000
May 31, 2004
1,927
83
Cape Breton Island
RichP said:
Record companies ever consider CD sales may be better if CDs were not $20 dollars a piece?? If I go to the store, grab a few CDs, and the bill is suddenly close to $100, DL'ing from peer-to-peer suddenly gets more attractive. I like supporting artists, I like owning the physical CD media, and I like having the control over the quality of the music rip for iTunes. However, music prices are just getting to the point where you cant go buy music to try out, each purchase has become a financial commitment!

Very true, it's quite frustrating. That's why I think the iTMS store is a godsend. I don't care to own the physical cd. I look through the leaflets once, maybe twice. I rip the cd into iTunes as soon as I get it, and then shelf the CD. Since the iTMS I haven't bought a physical cd in over a year.
 

wrldwzrd89

macrumors G5
Jun 6, 2003
12,106
73
Solon, OH
If I was buying CDs, I'd get around the issue of previews either by listening to the ones on the iTMS or using a music subscription service just for previews before buying the CD I wanted. This solution neatly dodges the DRM issue at the music stores (if you don't like overly compressed music, for example), but keeps you stuck with any measures on the CDs themselves.
 

Diatribe

macrumors 601
Jan 8, 2004
4,226
21
Back in the motherland
I hope that they don't write that on the CDs (which they probably won't). Then I can go into my favorite store buy a bunch listen to them at home and bring em back because they don't work as they should. Do this a couple of times and stores are gonna get really pissed with Sony.
 

CallMeCookie

macrumors newbie
Jan 26, 2005
19
0
Belgium
isn't the CD getting a bit outdated .. isnt that what the itunes music store is about :rolleyes:

Anyways I'm not buying any CD's, and the consumer won't know this ... I think they are going to give the consumers who still are buying CD's yet another reason to stop buying them.
 

michaelrjohnson

macrumors 68020
Aug 9, 2000
2,174
1
53132
My comments were made after reading *both* articles, the MacBytes one, and the one that article linked to. (I assumed more people read the other articles :eek: :eek: )

Either way, the CD's are *not* WMA files as Gizmotoy suggested. The CD has DRM so it can only be ripped a certain way. NOTE: This only affects Windows iPod users using iTunes. The same CD can be ripped in a Mac version of iTunes with no problem.

And while I agree that Sony has a history of proprietary technologies that stretches further than the eye can see, this DRM can be interpreted by any ripper, except iTunes for Windows. (Read: Apple is the only company who writes a program that cannot interpret this DRM, thus, Apple is lagging behind).

This is why Apple should "flip the switch" (a quote from the linked article) and make iTunes for PC compatible as the rest of the jukebox/ripping software in the industry is.
 

Kagetenshi

macrumors 6502
Feb 24, 2004
309
0
Boston
michaelrjohnson said:
And while I agree that Sony has a history of proprietary technologies that stretches further than the eye can see, this DRM can be interpreted by any ripper, except iTunes for Windows. (Read: Apple is the only company who writes a program that cannot interpret this DRM, thus, Apple is lagging behind).
Apple is no more lagging behind than vendors of browsers who didn't implement rendering Microsoft's non-standards-compliant extensions to HTML were lagging behind.

This is why Apple should "flip the switch" (a quote from the linked article) and make iTunes for PC compatible as the rest of the jukebox/ripping software in the industry is.
Apple should stay compatible with the Redbook standard, period.

~J
 

Belly-laughs

macrumors 6502a
Jun 8, 2003
844
16
you wish
from article said:
"We think we need to move this forward. Time is ticking, infringement of intellectual property is happening all over, and we've got to put a stop to it I think."
Yes, and Apple hasn´t made a good effort towards stopping illegal distribution of music?

History is repeating, Sony just never seem to learn…
 

SilvorX

macrumors 68000
May 24, 2002
1,701
0
'Toba, Canada
Thank goodness for iTunes, if the store never came into existance, I'dd still 100% rely on p2p for downloads

CDs are too expensive for me, I can buy the CDs I ABSOLUTELY need (want?), but it pisses me off when I pay $20 CDN and the CD has copy protection, although the copy protection is worthless when ripping it to my playlist on my mac :)

The only things keeping me back from buying all my needed music on iTunes is that it's not lossless (its certainly near it but I want totally lossless.. heh), lack of inserts for my fave artists, and there are no albums on the store that I *NEED*
 

shamino

macrumors 68040
Jan 7, 2004
3,386
130
Purcellville, VA
This is nothing new.

Sony, and everybody else, have been trying to copy protect their CDs for ages. So far, every attempt has resulted in an angry customer base and no sales. I don't see why this will be any different.

Dave Matthews should be angry that Sony is taking steps to destroy sales of his new album. How many fans will want to buy it when they find that they can't rip the tracks into their iPods?
 

shamino

macrumors 68040
Jan 7, 2004
3,386
130
Purcellville, VA
Cless said:
Honestly, Sony are the ones being "proprietary" by refusing to play along with the DRM scheme found in 75% of all MP3 players. They're just choosing to pay for one license instead of the other. I'm sure if they sat down and negotiated with Apple they'd be willing to license FairPlay for CDs.
I wouldn't be so sure of that. Apple has refused to license FairPlay to any other download sites. And they sued the one company (Real) that tried to reverse-engineer it.
 

TheIguana

macrumors 6502a
Sep 26, 2004
650
381
Canada
I am so fed up with all of this bs that the record companies are throwing at consumers that it makes me sick to even walk near a record store, let alone walk in. When will they ever just get it?

Iggy :(
 

Loge

macrumors 68030
Jun 24, 2004
2,678
1,147
England
It's not just a case of "flicking a switch". These discs have far more restrictive burn rights than iTMS music. I'd be surprised if Apple would want to associate themselves with that level of restriction.
 

mrsebastian

macrumors 6502a
Nov 26, 2002
744
0
sunny san diego
poor lil sony, can't beat apple in the ipod game... hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha! [bleepin] losers! hehe wonder when someone will start a hackers campaign to steal only sony's music online, now that would be funny :D
 

nagromme

macrumors G5
May 2, 2002
12,551
1,186
I'll accept (grudgingly) DRM on downloads because there was no other way it was ever going to happen. I blame the RIAA, but I blame the pirates more.

I will NOT accept CDs with DRM. Removal of privileges I have always had.

I will buy some music from iTunes, and some on CD, but NEVER protected CD.

Boycotts have killed these not-really-CD attempts before.
 

Gizmotoy

macrumors 65816
Nov 6, 2003
1,081
118
michaelrjohnson said:
Either way, the CD's are *not* WMA files as Gizmotoy suggested. The CD has DRM so it can only be ripped a certain way. NOTE: This only affects Windows iPod users using iTunes. The same CD can be ripped in a Mac version of iTunes with no problem.
Actually, WMA DRM is exactly what they are. The first problem is that articles misrepresent what is going on because they simply quote Sony without any real research. There are many articles around that explain Sony's new DRM in great detail. There's no reason to misinform the readers here.

Here is how it works:

When you insert your CD into a Windows machine, DRM software is run automatically in the background, and cuts off access to the plain audio portion of the CD. Then, you can listen to all of the tracks on the CD using the DRM version that is included right on the disk (no ripping required). Inserting said CD into a Mac has no effect because it can obviously not run the Windows-only DRM autorun software (though a Mac version is in the works). In addition, in Sony's press release last week they stated that if any customers had trouble accessing the DRM-enabled files included on the disk they should contact customer support who would tell them a work-around (some copy protection scheme, eh?). This workaround likely involves either holding down the shift button upon disc insertion (not the first opy protection vulnerable to this) or disabling autorun so the redbook audio files can be accessed directly. However, the linked Slashdot article has, in the comments, the exact method Sony tells its customers to disable the DRM to bypass the lock-down. I will not repost here due to DMCA concerns.

I highly recommend you read the more technical articles on this new protection instead of speculating using articles light on actual content.

Just a few articles for further reading:
http://news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&cid=581&e=3&u=/nm/20050616/tc_nm/media_music_cd_dc
http://yro.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=05/06/17/1213209&tid=155&tid=233&tid=141&tid=172

And finally, an exhaustive look at the Sunncomm MediaMaxx DRM that Sony is using, as performed by J. Alex Halderman of Princeton. Note that this describes the last iteration of the software, and Sony has begun using the next version.:
http://www.cs.princeton.edu/~jhalderm/cd3/

Edit: Added link support. If interested, there are many, many more articles.
 

Loge

macrumors 68030
Jun 24, 2004
2,678
1,147
England
Gimzotoy said:
When you insert your CD into a Windows machine, DRM software is run automatically in the background, and cuts off access to the plain audio portion of the CD. Then, you can listen to all of the tracks on the CD using the DRM version that is included right on the disk (no ripping required). Inserting said CD into a Mac has no effect because it can obviously not run the Windows-only DRM autorun software (though a Mac version is in the works).
Well the Mac version had better not install itself without prompting for administrator password or they'll be a lot of unhappy customers.
 

nagromme

macrumors G5
May 2, 2002
12,551
1,186
Loge said:
Well the Mac version had better not install itself without prompting for administrator password or they'll be a lot of unhappy customers.
It can't. It could run an app, which would generate a warning--but not install anything at the system level without a password. Good ol' OS X :)