Kurzweil’s DRM killer – Tales from the Crypto

Kurzweil’s DRM killer

Okay, so it's really a device for allowing blind people to read signs, menus, receipts, etc, without having to drag the print to a scanner.

But consider that this will effectively scan and read any print that is visible anywhere, and you realise that this device is a handy little DRM beater.

Mind you, so is a digital camera with good resolution – or a non-digital camera, for that matter.

Or a person with a notepad and pen.

Once again, this just underlines that DRM is workable only in the situation where you have extra, non-technological controls over the people with whom you share the DRM-protected material.

DRM is nothing more than a reminder to honest participants that they should not be passing copies around.

It is sad that many in the publishing industry are convinced that it is a panacea, and will prevent copyright infringement. The pirates simply continue to copy the bits (DVDs have DRM, but if you simply copy the bits exactly, the DVD created plays without complaint), and it's only those people that want to move content to different devices (i.e. non-DVD storage, such as a laptop hard-drive, for power-friendly viewing) that are prevented from doing so.

What do you call a "security measure" that has no effect on security, but substantially reduces usefulness for people who are legitimate users?

DRM.

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