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Studios back Sony multi-DRM content format

updated 04:15 pm EDT, Wed August 27, 2008

Studios back Sony DRM

A Tuesday report has the majority of the big movie studios and distributors supporting a plan put forth by Sony Pictures that would decrease the restrictions Digital Rights Management (DRM) imposes on users' ability to enjoy their purchased videos and movies. Last year, Sony Pictures proposed a set of policies and software and service framework it called Open Market that would allow larger flexibility of DRM content and let customers enjoy content on various devices they must first register.

As Sony Pictures presents it, the tentatively named Open Market will involve a neutral third party that will manage device registrations such as TVs, PCs and portable devices, which will then allows users to play their movie rentals or purchases on all their registered devices. The so-called domain provider will let consumers purchase devices freely without having to worry to whose content they will be restricted, while still protecting the content with Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) protection.

The initiative is expected to put a hold or slow down the sales of non-DRM movies, and is supported by retailers such as Wal-Mart, Amazon and CinemaNow, among others. Apple, and its popular iTunes franchise, are not on that list, instead offering works from Disney studios, including Pixar, Miramax and Touchstone siding with Apple for distribution of their products.

The movie studios - so far consisting of Fox, Paramount, Sony, Universal and Time Warner - are expected to make an announcement in September confirming their support of the tentatively named Open Market scheme, with Walt Disney and related studios not making the commitment to the new proposal. [via Techcrunch]













By Electronista Staff
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Comments

  1. scottnichol

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Oct 1999

    +3

    1 week

    given sony's record for writing DRM software, i suspect this will be cracked within 1 week of its roll-out.

  1. Guest

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Nov 1999

    +4

    this is stupid

    These media companies all hurt themselves when they try to hurt Apple. Apple is the one company that has shown them all how to create and market a media distribution system, including hardware, that people want to use. And yet, everyone and their dog spends all their time and energy to make replacement system's that always explicitly exclude support for Apple's computers and consumer devices. Even though there are more than 10's of million of Apple's devices around that people are using every day that could use their content.

  1. dliup

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Jan 2006

    +3

    imbeciles

    Note to studio execs with low IQ:

    iTunes helped the music industry out of a tailspin, by offering people an easy way to PURCHASE content, when people were downloading contents for free.

    Yes, we know you are greedy, and not very smart (because you think it's easy). Dozens of attempts to offer different, incompatible, useless DRM, all ended in failure. This will not be different.

    PS. For those stupid enough to withdraw content from iTunes, people will just go back to download things for free again (instead of actually paying via iTunes).

  1. WiseWeasel

    Junior Member

    Joined: Apr 1999

    +4

    register my devices?

    Sony expects me to register any playback devices with them before I can use them? s**** that! I'll be sticking to ripping my shiny discs to my media server in standard formats, and I'll use them wherever I damn well please. Time to engrave one more tombstone for the graveyard of failed DRM systems. They can take their consumer-hostile, privacy-violating alternatives to shiny discs and stick them where the sun don't shine. Friends don't let friends buy DRM'd content (unless, like DVDs, it's trivial to circumvent and doesn't violate privacy).

  1. Guest

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Nov 1999

    +2

    NewMore

    I can see this ending up just like Micro$oft's play always c*** or whatever the h*** they called it. Get everyone to start using your third party server to be able to see their content, then shut it down when you feel like it. No thanks a$$ wipes.

  1. Rezzz

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Jan 2006

    +3

    studios running drm

    So, a movie studio is proposing DRM to other movie studios. In other words, the movie studios want full control over digital distribution.

    That's right, ladies, try to bring your money gauging, brick-n-mortar sales model into the information age.

    It will be a sad day for consumers. A very sad day indeed.

  1. testudo

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Aug 2001

    0

    Re: this is stupid

    These media companies all hurt themselves when they try to hurt Apple.

    How is this an attempt to 'hurt' apple? Nothing says Apple can't be involved (and the whole point is to open it up for ANY device maker).

    And yet, everyone and their dog spends all their time and energy to make replacement system's that always explicitly exclude support for Apple's computers and consumer devices.

    Where does this say "And we won't support Apple's products at all!"?

    This is about making a standard DRM that any device maker can use (like the way the DVD player DRM, or the Blu-Ray DRM, is done with DVDs). So you can buy something from Wal-Mart and play it on your iPod. Or buy something from iTunes, and play it on your Zune.

    And Apple has done a great job of excluding everyone else's devices (as they won't license their DRM). But you're OK with that, because it's Apple.

    Even though there are more than 10's of million of Apple's devices around that people are using every day that could use their content.

    And all Apple has to do is add support to the iPod, and you're ready to go. If you can't use this content with your iPod, blame Apple for not joining in, don't blame the studios.

    Wouldn't you like to download a movie from iTunes and play it on your TV via your PS3 or XBox, rather than having to spend another $250 on an AppleTV for the privilege?

  1. testudo

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Aug 2001

    0

    Once again

    And I've said it before and I'll say it again. This is what Apple should've been doing with FairPlay. License it out to anyone and everyone, make it such a standard that it works on any device and from any service. And the DRM part of it becomes a whole lot less restrictive.

  1. vasic

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: May 2005

    -1

    Let's watch

    Difficult to say which way this is going to go. Apple has built an ecosystem around iTunes which is now colossal. The 10s of millions of devices is grossly understated (there are already at least 12 million iPhones, over 100 million iPods, and what about Macs themselves?).

    Apple has no reason to join this party and every reason not to (at this point). They are the monopoly in the distribution business, and this monopoly allows them to protect their hardware sales. If iTunes had allowed FairPlay on Sandisk or Creative MP3 devices, iPod's domination would have been seriously eroded. The reason for iPod's domination isn't just superiority of hardware; it is the complete integration of iTunes and its store. Remember, iTunes barely breaks even on sales of digital media.

    And make no mistake, the studios want to break Apple's stranglehold and that is their sole motivation behind this. Look at the last slide -- they clearly state that "iTunes is the ... problem".

    As for consumers, they are server rather well with the iTunes model. The only downside is the choice of hardware; if you want digital content, you have to buy Apple. Otherwise, better learn to use LimeWire or BitTorrent, since legal alternatives for Zen are fairly crappy.

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