Henri Poole's blog

ABC News: Bono Asked to Support Digital Freedom

May Wong of Associated Press writes

The Boston-based advocacy group launched an online petition Thursday asking Bono to take a stand with them against copy-protection technologies that they say unnecessarily restrict consumers' rights to freely use the music and art they've purchased. Digital rights management technology is commonly used by companies such as Apple Computer Inc. or Microsoft Corp. to support the companies' own business strategies and satisfy the music industry's concerns about unfettered distribution of songs over the Internet.... [Defective By Design] contends that more liberal access and usage models will actually help increase sales by widening the base of art lovers."

Take French Copyright Battle to the Streets

Peter Sayer at ComputerWorld writes "Free software campaigner Richard Stallman said French youth should protest against a draft law on copyright that will be voted on Friday.

The bill threatens their freedom to watch DVDs using free software, and is designed to make French citizens submit to the will of media companies, he said, delivering the closing keynote address at the Paris Capitale du Libre conference on Monday night.

Asked what could stop the law, Stallman replied: "Thousands of French youth in the streets."

Peter Brown on BBC World Service

This morning (6/23/06), an interview with Peter Brown Executive Director of the FSF, was aired on BBC World Service. The segment with Peter begins at 8 minutes 20 seconds into the news report. "This protection [DRM] doesn't protect against the real threat that the big media companies supposedly face, which is the large mafia like organizations that pirate stuff and distribute it through their black markets. What we're talking about here is you, an individual a

US News: Apple fights bid to allow iTunes on rival players

Kit Roane of US News writes:

At issue is the software embedded in the songs bought from the iTunes music store that prevents them from being played on rival devices.

Norway, Denmark, and Sweden have demanded that Apple strip the blocking software from its iTunes service. France is readying legislation that enforces such interoperability, and Finland may follow suit. Although no action has been taken in the United Kingdom, the record industry's trade body there has called for a removal of the software.

Financial Times: Crunch time for Apple’s music icon

Tom Braithwite and Kevin Allison from the Financial Times write Pressure on Apple Computer to open its closed system of the iTunes digital music store and the iPod music player is spreading across Europe.

...there are early signs of a concerted consumer campaign. Customers at Apple’s shiny new 24-hour store on Fifth Avenue in New York were last week treated to the spectacle of men and women dressed in fluorescent radiation suits protesting against the “digital rights managment” (DRM) software that stops iTunes tracks being played on other players.

DRM News: The DVD War Against Consumers (BusinessWeek)

David H. Holtzman of Business Week writes:

Makers of new DVD players are going too far in copyright protection efforts, but buyers needn't take it lying down

...these new disks are packed full of copy-protection functions, some of which impair our ability to use the content we pay for, the way we like and are legally entitled to.

...there's an ominous feature buried in this so-called protection mechanism: If a particular brand of player is cryptographically "compromised," the studio can remotely disable all of the affected players. In other words, if some hacker halfway across the globe cracks Sony's software, Sony can shut down my DVD player across the Net.

FlashMob Pictures

Sign up here to find out about the next event.

[img_assist|nid=37|title=DRM Elimination Crew Seattle Microsoft WinHEC2006|desc=The Defective By Design DRM Elimination Crew warn Microsoft WinHEC attendees of the dangers of DRM at Microsoft WinHEC in Seattle, May 23, 2006.|link=none|align=left|width=400|height=300] [img_assist|nid=45|title=6 running|desc=6 runners in Seattle|link=none|align=left|width=400|height=222] [img_assist|nid=26|title=DRM Elimination Crew Seattle for WinHEC|desc=The DRM Elimination Crew|link=none|align=left|width=400|height=300]

Flash Protest News: Campaign Against Digital Rights Management Heats Up (Information Week)

K.C. Jones of TechWeb writes:

Calling themselves freedom fighters, members of the Free Software Foundation are engaging in a campaign against Digital Rights Management, which they emphatically refer to as Digital Restrictions Management.

Members donned yellow hazardous materials suits to kick off the initiative, called DefectiveByDesign.org, in Seattle earlier this week to protest Bill Gates' keynote speech on the future of Microsoft. The direct action campaign, targeting "big media and corporations peddling Digital Restrictions Management," plans more flash protests.

Flash Protest News: Free Software Foundation startet Kampagne gegen DRM (testticker.de)

testticker.de schreibt:

"Mit der Kampagne will man darauf aufmerksam machen, dass immer mehr Hardware- und Software-Anbieter DRM-Systeme in ihre Produkte integrieren und damit die Rechte der Anwender beschneiden. So würden private Kopien digitaler Inhalte verhindert und völlig ignoriert, dass zahlreiche Werke nach Ablauf der Schutzfristen unter Public Domain fallen. Zudem lässt sich das Nutzerverhalten durch DRM überwachen, was einen schwerwiegenden Eingriff in die Privatsphäre darstellt."

die Geschichte lesen.

Flash Protest News: Free Software Foundation startet Protestaktion gegen DRM (heise online)

Heise Online schreibt:

"Mitglieder der Free Software Foundation (FSF) haben zu Beginn der Microsoft-Entwicklerkonferenz Windows Hardware Engineering Conference (WinHEC) vor dem Veranstaltungszentrum in Seattle gegen Digital Rights Management protestiert. In Schutzoveralls gekleidet warnten sie die vorbeikommenden Konferenzteilnehmer davor, dass ihr Produkt Windows Vista fehlerhaft sei und die Nutzer gefährde. Das geht aus einer Mitteilung der FSF hervor. Windows Vista sei "hazmat", also ein "Gefahrgut", hieß die Parole."

Flash Protest News: Tech Advocacy Group Takes to the Streets to Protest DRM at WinHEC (eHomeUpgrade)

Alexander Grundner at eHomeUpgrade writes

"We're all familiar with protests against war, cruelty to animals, and such, but how about DRM (digital rights/restrictions management)? Enter Defective By Design, an anti-DRM advocacy group backed by the Free Software Foundation (FSF) that has started targeting “Big Media, unhelpful manufacturers and DRM distributors.” The group aims to identify “defective” products for consumers and recruit technologists to help bring awareness to the public of the evils of DRM – even if it means having to wear hazmat suits to get people's attention.

Flash Protest News: DRM protest at Microsoft confab (CNET)

Ina Fried writes Protesters in hazardous materials suits marched outside the Washington State Trade and Convention Center on Tuesday, where the software maker was kicking off its Windows Hardware and Engineering Conference (WinHEC). The demonstrators, from the Free Software Foundation's Defective by Design group, were lobbying against Microsoft's digital-rights management technology, which restricts copysharing." Read the story.

Flash Protest News: DRM protestors storm Seattle (TechEffect)

Brian Ward of Tech Effect writes "When Bill Gates took the stage for a keynote speech on the future of Microsoft and the upcoming release of Vista little did he know that men in hazmat suits were lying in wait. Defectivebydesign.org is a group of color-coded anti-DRM crusaders, and they made their presence known in Seattle with a rip-roaring good time of a protest. This grass-roots organization has applied the golden rule of protesting to their latest effort to eradicate digital rights management (or as t

Flash Protest News: Digital rights protesters gate-crash Microsoft Winhec party (Personal Computer World)

Personal Computer World reports "Anti-Digital Rights Management (DRM) protesters from the Free Software Foundation have gate-crashed Microsoft's Winhec developers conference in Seattle.

Wearing bright yellow suits, the Free Software Foundation protesters swarmed around the Winhec convention entrance, telling the delegates that the Microsoft-backed DRM was defective and hazardous to users." Read the story.

Flash Protest News: Anti-DRM demonstrators in hazmat suits storm Bill Gates keynote (boingboing)

Cory Doctorow writes "Protestors from the Free Software Foundation's excellent Defective By Design anti-DRM campaign staged a surprise demonstration yesterday... Defective By Design promises lots more grassroots activism, street theater, and direct action against DRM."

Flash Protest News: Andrew Becherer rocked today!

Andrew Becherer, one of the freedom fighters who attended the Microsoft action today posted a great comment on slashdot:

I am proud to say that I participated in today's FSF event.

I believe the combination of Digital Rights Management technology and the Trusted Computing initiative are the single greatest threat to a free software desktop. I believe the danger is not just that we will be pushed into a desktop ghetto where we will not be allowed to enjoy the newest movies and music.

RMS' Right to Read [gnu.org] might seem far out for most folks I believe he is point on. DRM will tie media to an user or possibly an user and a specific machine. DRM will allow corporations to gather unprecedented amounts of information about us. If we are not vigilant we are headed into an Orwellian dystopia where all of our digital habits are carefully monitored and controlled.

Flash Protest News: FSF launches anti-DRM campaign outside WinHEC 2006 (NewsForge)

Bruce Byfield writes "Planned as a flash event, today's protest was deliberately kept secret over the last few days. The Electronic Frontier Foundation alerted its members in Seattle, and information was posted yesterday to the Bellingham Linux Users' Group mailing list, but the three dozen supporters who showed up at the corner of Pike and 7th in downtown Seattle at 8 a.m. had little idea exactly what form the protest would take until shortly before they ducked into an alley to change into t

Flash Protest News: Anti-DRM Flashmob in Seattle (Smartmobs)

Howard Rheingold just posted "At 8:30am this morning, wearing neon Hazmat gear, 25 techology activists from FSF & EFF swarmed the 2006 Windows Hardware Engineering Conference in Seattle. Following the lead of the French anti-DRM activists, the new initative, Defective By Design, is signing up activists interested in getting involved in local actions to bring awareness to the crippling effects of DRM on art, literature, music or film, and free software. "

Flash Protest News: DRM Protest in Hazmat Suits (Slashdot)

Slashdot writes "The Free Software Foundation launched a new anti-DRM initiative today with a flash protest at Bill Gates’s keynote speech to Microsoft developers in Seattle. They’re calling the new campaign ‘Defective by Design’ and have named Big Media, device manufacturers and proprietary software companies as targets. CivicActions is participating as a coalition partner in the campaign. Protesters donned HazMat suits, apparently to emphasize the hazard Digital Restrictions Management poses to their rights. There are a

Seattle anti-DRM flashmob

There is no more important cause for electronic freedoms and privacy than the call for action to stop DRM from crippling our digital future. The time is now. Join us.

By joining the DEFECTIVE BY DESIGN community, we commit to each other that together, as our numbers grow, we will use our collective voices to demand that governments, corporations, and politicians take the steps necessary to protect our rights. Today I join this community and I request to be immediately notified of direct actions that I can join in my local community.
Postal Code** (required)
First Name Last Name Mobile Phone (SMS)***

* A password and instructions will be sent to this e-mail address, so make sure it is accurate.
** We'll SMS you with urgent actions in your area
*** International Codes OK
Subscribe to RSS - Henri Poole's blog