Tuesday, October 25, 2011


I read an excellent Op-Ed on DRM today, aka digital rights management titled "If you want to fight piracy, make better games".   In it, the writer Jason Schreier writes about the company Valve, and writes about how company owner Gabe Newell believes publishers should be using the carrot and stick approach.  It's a great read, and very timely when you consider the recent ill-advised bill C-11 the so called copyright modernization act.  Which wouldn't be a bad law if it weren't for the fact that it criminalizes the breaking of DRM, and no amount of proof of the fact that most Canadians are against enshrining DRM into law and that Canadians DESPISE it will stop the Conservatives from idiotically pushing this through now that they have a majority.  Hell, even the Conservatives, if you read what they are saying, sound like they're just reading a pre-written message from the music and movie industry.. which lets face it, they almost certainly are.  Now I've talked about DRM before and how it makes it illegal to do what you want to do with the cell phones or computers or music or DVD's that you buy.. If you don't know what DRM is by now or why it's evil, you're part of the problem and probably a member of the Conservative Party of Canada.

Anyways, What got me posting is my epiphany that the Conservative solution to crime prevention is the same as their approach to copyright.  Extremist, pointlessly expensive and ultimately unworkable.    It's the same in that INNOCENT PEOPLE get inconvenienced, but the CRIMINALS will keep on doing what they're doing.  In my mind these laws show that the Conservatives don't care about catching actual criminals, they care about making laws that criminalize everyone and everything.  Everything is a sin, in their eyes, and you're automatically guilty.  They'd get rid of the lawyers and judges if they could get away with it and lock everyone up.

That is how DRM works.  It inconveniences people who want to play a legally purchased game or watch a foreign movie in another country.  It makes it impossible to unlock a cell phone to work on a competing provider.  The Conservatives know this, because people have stated it to them, but they don't care!  It doesn't matter.   They can then lock up a number of people and say "Look, we stopped crime, arrests are up 5000% since our new laws!".. well no, you didn't solve anything.  It's only an illusion.  If you do arrest anyone actually guilty of something, you've arrested another 1000 generally law abiding citizens and created a culture of fear and domination and opression.  Which is clearly the point.  Welcome to America today.  Protection of ill gotten monopolies for the wealthy class.  The so called 1% of robber barons and still on the loose criminal bankers.

People don't want to break the law.  But when everything is illegal, what choice will they have? The fact that people download music is not a failure of copyright, its a failure of companies not meeting their customers demands.  Look at the success of netflix.  Old media companies hate it.  They've been spoon fed so long in this country they want to enact UBB to protect their little fiefdoms.  The regulatory capture in this country is sickening.  4 companies essentially own the media and the distribution networks and the government in Canada.  And they act in lock step.

The laws of this country are slowly being changed to protect only a small segment of wealthy foreign nationals.  That's what Bill C-10 and C-11 are for, they have little to do with stopping graffiti or putting gang members in jail.  That's who the Conservative party works for.

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