Sunday, December 18, 2005

There are no bits that are desired by humans that are not available [on the web]

--- Marc Smith, in conversation 15 December 2005. When checking this with Marc, this was his reply:
In my typical hyperbolic style: yes, I said this.

Of course I am wildly overstating, the public internet is only a fraction of the net; vast databases of content and data are locked up all over the place. But there is a kernel of truth in this assertion: a business model that depends on the widespread distribution of bits which remain in a controlled container will not long stand. To date I do not know of a DRM system that is not cracked. Every XBOX, PS2, Hollywood video, recording, etc. is available on the (not so) darknet right now. Knowledge of the darknet is spreading fast – most people have some infringing content. A business model based on these files not being available because of some novel technical innovation (present or future) seems misguided. A business based in part on selling such technology seems misguided – perhaps we should rename DRM “Doesn’t Really Matter”?