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Gates: DRM 'causes pain' for users

updated 02:15 pm EST, Fri December 15, 2006

Bill Gates on DRM

Microsoft's Bill Gates objects to digital rights management as it exists today, according to a report by Mike Arrington of TechCrunch on a recent bloggers' convention at the Microsoft campus. When asked his opinion about DRM, Gates freely said that the restrictions "cause too much pain for legitimate users," who frequently encounter arbitrary limits on devices and may not be aware of their usage rights. The executive suggests that people choose to buy and rip CDs instead and that options should exist for alternate business models, such as paying for unlimited access to a particular artist's songs.

Gates' statements have come as a surprise to some at the convention, as Microsoft's recently released Zune is linked to the DRM-restricted Zune Marketplace online store and applies protection to songs shared through the WiFi "squirting" feature, even when the source tracks are unrestricted.

by MacNN Staff





  1. KailDathmar

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Not too suprising

    Just because he doesn't like the DRM doesn't mean he doesn't have to use it. Being a large company like Microsoft you are expected by companies like Universal, and others to use the software that they want you to use. If you don't then they wont give you the rights to offer their music, or videos. It would be nice if Microsoft just went on and snuffed the DRM, but the bottom line drives incentives a little more than the general public would like.

    From my perspective digital legality is going to get a lot worse before they drop it almost completely.

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