Archive for August 29th, 2006

Major Record Labels Adopt ACS

The online community is buzzing today over the announcement that Universal Music plans to "give away" music online through a new service called SpiralFrog (which is also negotiating with other major labels including EMI).  The approach is not particularly innovative – the service will be ad-supported, something people like Terry McBride from Nettwerk has been advocating for months and other sectors (television, radio, online gaming, newspapers) have been offering for some time.  Moreover, the service is likely to face some challenges – by relying on DRM that is not compatible with the iPod, it is leaving out a large part of the market. 

That said, there are at least two bigger points worth making.

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August 29, 2006 5 comments News

30 Days of DRM – Day 11: Involuntary Installation of Software (Circumvention Rights)

Yesterday's post addressed the negative impact of anti-circumvention legislation on security research.  There is another security issue that merits discussion – the involuntary installation of software that may constitute a personal security threat to individual computer users.  Such software is frequently classified as spyware – software programs that are placed on users' computers without their informed consent that proceed to cause havoc by compromising personal information, posing an identity theft risk, sending spam, and infecting other computers.

While spyware can worm its way onto a personal computer in many different ways, inclusion within a DRM is a possibility. The best-known example of the DRM-spyware connection is last year's Sony rootkit fiasco

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August 29, 2006 6 comments News

NY Times Blocks UK Access to Article

With all the discussion around content blocking, interesting to note that the NY Times yesterday blocked UK access to an article, using targeted advertising technology to identify UK users. Update: The Associated Press provides additional coverage of this story.

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August 29, 2006 1 comment News