What does one do to participate in this anyway? The press release wasn't clear.
Showing more of my ignorance on the subject, does anyone know if the content-producers are even consulted on whether or not their copyrighted works get DRM or not?
The rights holders have a very compelling argument from the perspective of a creator. How do you convince someone DRM is bad when the person showering them in money and fame is telling them it's good?
If Tor had gotten their DRM-free book thing in order by now, rather than waiting until July or so, I'd probably also be buying a Tor e-book today.
You are correct, the non-redistributability of many O'Reilly books is what they would they would object to, not cost. And not all O'Reilly books are non-redistributable - they have a number of books under open licenses.
Like I said, it's just an inkling at this point, any thoughts?
FSF may claim to be about "Free as in Speech, rather than Free as in Beer," but DRM straddles both of these points. Yes, we're restricted in the products that can utilize DRM files, but DRM also exists to protect ownership rights. Its a complex system, and one that can't simply be "abolished" without some suitable alternative to protects both interests.
There are lots of theories and examples of alternatives to DRM that protect the rights of both the creator and end user. I'm just disappointed that the FSF didn't propose one of these, or their own, as a viable solution. It's easy to point fingers, it's tough to propose meaningful solutions.
[DRM] can't simply be "abolished" without some suitable
alternative to protects both interests.
The solution is getting rid of DRM. DRM does not prevent people intent on pirating their media from doing whatever they want. It hurts legitimate users.
The existence of DRM has nothing to do with preserving the freedom of content creators. Your presentation of it as something that does is naive. It exists to protect the interests and power of media publishers. The publishers--not the creators--are the ones making the choices about DRM. Its use is an attempt to prop up outdated business models, because that's easier--and, in the short term, safer--than change.
I agree that their business models need an overhaul, but simply pointing a finger from afar, and telling these entrenched organizations to change won't get far. These industries are too big and entreneched to just dies either. The most practical answer is to have some sort of compromise.
It'll be hard to go back to pre-DRM, too. You can't unshift a paradigm like DRM for big media
You can't unshift a paradigm like DRM for big media
DRM was pervasive in the music industry. It no longer is. DRM was pervasive in the ebook industry. We are beginning to see signs from publishers (Tor books being the most recent example) of a willingness to sell ebooks without DRM. "DRM-free" has become a selling point for smaller companies in the games industry.
It is not easy, and it is not fast, but it is possible, and it is happening.
The German Chaos Computer Club proposed a similar system using a cryptographic micropayment currency:
(sorry only German)
Take a look at https://www.gnu.org/philosophy/misinterpreting-copyright.htm... . The FSF holds a consistent position on this: "copyright privileges can be justified only in the name of the readers, never in the name of the publishers"; in other words, we permit limited copyright restrictions because we want more works produced, and that represents a tradeoff. The same thing applies to DRM: tolerating DRM means we might get a few more works produced (though widespread evidence would seem to suggest otherwise), but we lose a lot of rights over those works. That tradeoff doesn't seem worth it.
Law is the fallback for both.