Ah, the Irony

Via BoingBoing, I ran across this item, about how a supporter of the DMCA and DRM technologies found he couldn’t access 2 years worth of television programs on his own video recorder.

For those who aren’t familiar with Mr. Giovanetti’s work, he’s a
frequent and pugnacious commentator on intellectual property issues,
and an avowed supporter
of the DMCA and digital rights management technologies. He’s a frequent
critic of “IP skeptics” and “commonists” who argue that copyright
law–and the technological measures designed to protect copyright–have
gone overboard.

Today he discovered that sometimes, technological measures designed
to deter piracy are a pain in the ass for ordinary consumers–like him.

For those who don’t know, the DMCA is an overreaching piece of legislation that goes beyond protecting copyrights and actually limiting previously accepted Fair Use activites. DRM is technology that media companies want to put on every digital video or audio device (like your ipod) so that they can control where, when, and how you listen to music or view tv shows, even if you’ve already paid for them. You can learn more about the DMCA and DRM from the Electronic Frontier Foundation.