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      CPRM - Digital Copy Protection

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    Author Topic:   CPRM - Digital Copy Protection
    Sean Kelly
    Big Cheese

    Posts: 127
    From:San Jose, California USA
    Registered: Dec 99

    posted 12-29-2000 04:43 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Sean Kelly   Click Here to Email Sean Kelly     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
    The ever-increasing threat of digital copy protection looms over us all yet again. As Big Media companies come closer together in an effort to thwart piracy efforts, just as they have tried for the past twenty years, they continue to spur restlessness among the ranks of those of us who feel we are responsible with paying dues.

    Today I found myself engaged in a heated conversation with some coworkers, largely speculating towards the future of the digital media and copy protection, brought on by the recent media coverage of Copy Protection for Recordable Media (CPRM) currently under development by the 4C: IBM, Intel, Toshiba and Matsushita - yes, the very same four companies directly responsible for producing the CSS2 technology aimed at correcting the mistakes of yester-year with DeCSS. The 4C's goal this time is to prevent the copy of just about any software you can imagine by embedding encryption and encoding technology directly onto ATA hard disk and other storage devices, particularly the sort of "specialty" miniaturized devices used in portables and hand-helds. The technology has been incorporated into current DVD and removable SD disks, and is effectively awaiting hardware level enforcement through SCSI and ATA specifications.

    The news, while it has strong backing and may yet see the light of day, is only yet another in a series of failed attempts to block piracy that span decades of research and development from the media giants. They thought SSL encryption was uncrackable. They were wrong. They thought CSS was invincible. Wrong again. Region coding? Please, it hurts to laugh. If they think CPRM will be their mighty, undefeated champion, they've got another thing coming. What many people don't realize is that not all "hackers" are lazy, rebellious teenagers. There are growing numbers of irked engineering professionals who have a BIG problem with exactly the type of Big Brotherism that such preventative systems entail. These are the people who will devote countless wee-morning hours to cracking an otherwise undefeated system. Hark ye of little faith: it shall be cracked.

    But wait, that's only the first point. It's one thing to acknowledge that the hackers working to reverse-engineer piracy prevention systems are organized and equally as intelligent as those who pieced the system together in the first place, but it's another finally come to the realization that generally you can't dictate rules and then expect everything to simply go to plan, especially when the vast majority becomes an angry mob ready to overthrow your reign altogether? Effectively, copy prevention research is, in my opinion, a waste of both marketing and development research. Had the media moguls jumped on board immediately with MP3, they would have capitalized on the world's demand for CD's which contain many hours worth of MP3 music by producing anthology collections, etc that cater to this desire. The product would have been valuable, it would have been paid for, consumers would have taken pride in their new CD players capable of juke boxing music all day long from a single disc. Instead what happened? Tempers flared, fist flew and everybody ended up being tied up in expensive litigations and court proceedings. My only wish is that the big industries would have the vision to embrace new technologies and learn to capitalize on what's new and hot and what people want rather than raising a stinking fuss and encroach on Americans' civil rights.

    To learn more and join the fight against CPRM and other, please check out the Electronic Frontier Foundation.

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    Big Cheese

    Posts: 41
    From:aptos, CA, 95003
    Registered: Dec 99

    posted 01-05-2001 10:16 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for nthooze   Click Here to Email nthooze     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
    Good stuff Sean, thanks.. ..I agree completely with you, these industries are showing their old thinking un adaptive sleves with their approach to new technology's. They'd probibally prefer us all buying vinyl. Now are these the people that we want incharge of our entertainment industry?.. ..thwarting new and exciting technologies rater than embracinig them and running with them. I can go on and on but I'll just leave it at that.

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