DRM died on April 29th, 2008 when Microsoft announced it would be shutting down its ‘Plays for sure’ DRM validation servers on August 31st, 2008. All DRM’d music bought under the ‘Plays for sure’ system will become permanently tethered to the device it is currently ‘authorized’ on. When those devices fail or are replaced the DRM’ed music on them will be permanently lost.
While there are still many services with DRM out there, the de-activation of the ‘plays for sure’ system illustrates the core problem with DRM very clearly – somebody else holds the keys to your DRM’d music/movies/books. If they decide you can’t use them anymore – for whatever reason – your media become unusable.
Even those people who don’t know or don’t care about DRM will now think twice, particularly if they are burned by ‘plays for sure’.
Ergo, DRM is dead.
DRM’s funeral – the zuneral – was held this evening in Cambridge, MA. About 20 people attended the tasteful ceremony that ended with the submersion of the deceased in the Charles.
A plaque was revealed on the Weeks bridge to commemorate the event:
DRM is dead, rejoice!