An urgent appeal

(Digg this)

We're at a crucial moment in the fight against DRM. This year--thanks to the strength of the movement you've built and been a part of--we defeated DRM on music. But DRM on books, games, and other digital media is a bigger threat than ever.

Meanwhile the Free Software Foundation, the organization behind Defective by Design, is engaged in a broader battle: fighting for our rights to control the technology we use by promoting free software. The FSF is a member-supported nonprofit. Please consider donating or becoming a member today.

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Membership is $10 a month or $5 a month for students.

Free software is our best weapon against DRM. When you use free software, no company can use your hardware to control you. You're free to share whatever you want with whoever you want. And there are no artificial rules or restrictions: the only limit is our community's imagination and ingenuity.

The FSF believes that anybody who doesn't give you this freedom is doing something fundamentally wrong and needs to be stopped. This conviction often pits us against some of the biggest companies and the most dominant ways of thinking in the technology business. What gives us the independence to speak out--and the power to make our voice heard--is the support of our members.

You can also give a gift membership to a friend, or refer a friend to join--and receive recognition.

The FSF can take on controversial campaigns like Defective by Design because it isn't built on the support of big companies and Silicon Valley CEOs: it's built on the support of other activists like you. If you believe that the technology we use should be free from arbitrary restrictions, the best way to put that into action is by becoming an FSF member.

The FSF is a 501(c)3 nonprofit, and donations are tax deductible in the US. Thanks for your time, and thanks for all the work you've done this year. Keep reading below for some of the highlights of Defective by Design's work this year. We're proud of it, and we're proud of you!


Holmes Wilson
Campaigns Manager
Free Software Foundation / Defective by Design

P.S. Here are some highlights from Defective by Design's work in 2009:

  • 2009 was the year that music DRM died. But when Apple's iTunes store went DRM-free on music, we celebrated the victory without buying the hype: Apple still uses DRM on virtually everything else they sell (movies, TV shows, games, audiobooks, applications, and of course hardware).

  • Ebooks and ebook readers took off this year, and so did the threat of DRM on books. When Amazon deleted copies of George Orwell's 1984 from hundreds of people's ebook readers, we collected thousands of signatures from readers, authors, public intellectuals and librarians demanding an end to ebook DRM.

  • At the same time, we praised and promoted the work of authors and publishers who do the right thing and keep their books DRM-free, like Harlequin's new publishing house Carina Press, or the hundreds of publishers who tagged their work "drmfree".

Through all this, Defective by Design is proud to be the only voice saying loud and clear that there's no such thing as "better" or "friendlier" DRM. No matter how many devices it works on, or what "features" it includes to trick people into accepting it, DRM robs us of our basic rights and insults human curiosity--it needs to go.

This work is critical. Please consider supporting it by becoming a member.