Hmmmm, I haven’t had a good Digital Restrictions Management (DRM) story in a while. Let’s fix that now.
Microsoft, 2 years after launching MSN music store, is now moving its anti-consumer-technology efforts into making the Zune as unfriendly as possible for restricting consumer rights. Yes, Microsoft is shutting down the MSN music store, and offering no upgrade path to users who spent money to have their access to music restricted to whatever Microsoft said was appropriate use (fair use be damned). So these users, if they want to continue having access to music that they cannot access in the future shoudl Microsoft deem a change necessary, now have to buy music from RealNetworks’ Rhapsody site or the Zune marketplace (linkage not provided, because I don’t want to encourage people to support these rights-murdering formats). However, Microsoft assures its customers that it is really, really, very terribly sorry that they can no longer use what they have paid for and move it to a new format as current fair use protections expressly allow.
With Zune, Microsoft is trying to replicate the success Apple has had by adopting one of its main strategies–controlling both the music service and device. However, the move has angered some of Microsoft’s longtime partners, who built devices and services that used Microsoft’s core technology.
Yes – Microsoft felt it was bad to only control the digital bits side of the restrictions, so now it is enabling its own further restrictions by also designing and controlling the hardware which will play the restricted music.
In summary – Microsoft failed in selling rights-limited music. In order to improve their chances, they are throwing away all past customer allowed rights and moving to a more controlled format coupled with a sexy new player, hoping to fool both new and old customers into getting burned by restricted bits. (via boingboing)
[tags]Microsoft – bought DRM music from us? Fools!!!, Microsoft to abandon current music customers in an effort to screw over entire new customer base[/tags]