On Copy Protection and DRM

Security: Dan Bricklin writes:

As I pointed out in ‘Copy Protection Robs The Future’, the only reason I have a copy (of VisiCalc) that can still work is that someone kept a ‘bootleg’ uncopyprotected copy around. The original disks may not have worked on a Longhorn machine. Just copying the files from the original 5 1/4″ floppy to a 3 1/2″ one that would fit in today’s machines certainly would result in a non-working copy, because of copy protection. We will regret ‘Digital Restriction/Rights Management’ in the future.

Here’s the essay he mentions: Copy Protection Robs The Future:

Copy protection, like poor environment and chemical instability before it for books and works of art, looks to be a major impediment to preserving our cultural heritage. Works that are copy protected are less likely to survive into the future. The formal and informal world of archivists and preservers will be unable to do their job of moving what they keep from one media to another newer one, nor will they be able to ensure survival and appreciation through wide dissemination, even when it is legal to do so.

Tying in nicely with The Long Now Foundation and the importance of the public domain.

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