Defective by Design

UK Government Responds to Petition to Ban DRM

Submitted by Gregory Heller on Tue, 2007-02-20 17:57

A few months ago blogger and DefectiveByDesign.org Member Neil Holmes set up a petition on a beta site run by the UK Government.

This week the government posted a response, and unfortunately, they are drinking the Big Media coolaid.


"DRM does not only act as a policeman through technical protection measures, it also enables content companies to offer the consumer unprecedented choice in terms of how they consume content, and the corresponding price they wish to pay," said the government, in its response.

"It is clear though that the needs and rights of consumers must also be carefully safeguarded. It is reasonable for consumers to be informed what is actually being offered for sale, for example, and how and where the purchaser will be able to use the product, and any restrictions applied," the government added.

The story was covered on CNET and elsewhere. CNET also reported:

Becky Hogge, executive director at the Open Rights Group, believes that public awareness of the issues surrounding DRM is growing. "DRM had been seen in the past as a niche technology issue, but there is now rising consumer awareness about it," she told ZDNet UK.

Hogge added that some DRM technologies put restrictions on users that run counter to their rights under U.K. copyright law. For example, a blanket ban on copying prevents an individual from taking a sample for review or illustrative purposes, as they are allowed to under the "fair use" provisions within copyright law.

Login