DRM sucks!

by Yash 1 Comment

I recently purchased a song from Soundbuzz.com – Teri Deewani by Kailash Kher from his album Kailasa. I bought it for 10 Rupees which was a fair price I thought. I paid through credit card and downloaded the song…..but I couldn’t play it! It’s a protected song in WMA format which requires a license to play. This is called Digital Rights Management. Although I was shown a message when I purchased the song that the license was downloaded on my computer, whenever I tried to play it I got a message saying I don’t have the license to play. Contacting Soundbuzz.com didn’t help. It’s a company doing business in 13 countries and selling music worth millions of dollars every month, but their customer service sucks and so does the DRM!

It was my first tryst with buying music online and the DRM and it was a bad experience! Three days and I am not yet able to play the song for which I paid legitimate fees!

DRM imposes several restrictions on the usage of the content like

-You need special software to play it

-It can not be played on another computer. So if my computer crashes and I loose the license then I must buy the license again.

-It can not be played on any portable music player unless the device supports WMA and the content owner allows to do so in the license. So basically you need special software and hardware to play the content.

In the world where MP3s are available for free why would someone pay for the music which comes with all the strings attached? I can any ways buy a CD and make MP3 and play it anywhere on any damn device!

I have serious doubts about the success of the DRM technology. At least the current technology makes it more difficult for the legitimate users to use it freely. Apple’s iTunes has similar problems. Songs purchased through iTunes can be played only on iTunes on a PC/Mac or an iPod. And they too can not be copied onto other devices or computers.

What these people want to achieve by implementing such foolish restrictions? The protected songs can still be converted into MP3 and can be distributed freely making a joke of the DRM! If I buy a song I must be able to play in on my computer, on my mobile phone or in my car stereo. Do these music companies want me to buy a new copy for each of the device that I play it on?