Defective by Design

35 Days Against DRM -- Day 6: Windows Media Center

Submitted by mattl on Wed, 2008-12-03 14:55

If you put Microsoft at the center of your home entertainment system, be prepared to hand them the remote control, literally.

Microsoft is using DRM to prevent users from saving certain television shows to their hard drive. Saving such streams is a normal feature that comes with Windows Media Center, but they have locked you out of it for NBC television shows and others. They claim that they are just following FCC regulations -- but the Second Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the FCC has no authority to make such regulations. The truth is Microsoft is just power hungry and making use of DRM wherever and whenever they can in order to secure media deals for themselves and lock in their customers.

Following reports that digital television viewers were blocked from recording the new season of NBC's "Gladiators", Microsoft confirmed that it is preventing users from recording the show. They claim they were acting on behalf of NBC, and are in line with regulations set by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), in disrupting computer usage based upon the so-called "broadcast flag" that was transmitted alongside the show.

Take action!

Boycott Windows Media Center, and choose products which do not implement the broadcast flag, such as MythTV.

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