Friday, June 01, 2007

Personal DRM story

In light of my last post about DRM, I thought I'd relate a personal story about something similar to DRM to illustrate how silly it is:

I was home for a while and was trying to help my parents set up their entertainment center such that all of their inputs, like Digital Cable, could work harmoniously and without a switchbox. I was trying to run the DVD player through the RCA input of the Digital Cable box. After I got it plugged in, though, it didn't matter what button on the cable box's remote I pushed, or what option I selected in the digital GUI (graphic user interface... AKA the menu), I couldn't get the DVD player to run through!!!

I finally, after almost an hour, did a live chat with Comcast's technical support. It did not take long in the conversation for him to relate to me that I could not do what I was trying to do. I asked why, and his response shocked me. He told me that because the inputs were not crucial to the cable box's performance (i.e. watching Comcast Digital Cable), it was simply not set up to work. So, essentially, all of the cable boxes they send out have an RCA input space, but the RCA input does not actually work. It's for show.

That is what DRM is like.


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