Streaming services, beware: International Day Against DRM (IDAD) is coming Dec. 4

The fourteenth International Day Against DRM (IDAD) is coming soon, and the Defective by Design (DbD) campaign needs your help to spread the word. This year's annual day in protest of Digital Restrictions Management (DRM) will be on December 4th, 2020, and will focus on streaming services' unjust use of DRM. We need your help to spread that message far and wide to both anti-DRM activists and those simply concerned with how in a world with continued technological advancement, our digital freedoms are increasingly under threat.

While in quarantine, we've all been conscious of how the way we engage with our favorite films, television, and music has been changing. Many (if not most) homes connected to a high-speed Internet connection have turned to streaming services that peddle DRM to seek entertainment, subjecting themselves to onerous restrictions in exchange for a way to pass the time. The Defective by Design campaign exists to raise awareness about the injustice of these services and other ways that media conglomerates use DRM to deprive computer users of their freedom.

In the last few years since the rise of these services, we've seen their influence grow from a mere drop in the bucket of video distribution to a stranglehold on global culture. Each more poorly named and unnecessary than the last, these services dictate what we watch, surveil us while we watch it, and through it all, make use of digital restrictions to keep viewers helpless and unable to exert meaningful control on how they choose to experience movies, music, and television. These dis-services dictate exactly how the works they distribute can be viewed, down to mandating the use of proprietary software and hardware that curtails user freedom. We deserve better.

The influence the DRM industry has on the Web shows itself more strongly with every day that passes, which is why we need grassroots efforts like IDAD to raise awareness of the serious ethical issues brought on by DRM, and what community efforts can do to stop it. Stay tuned for the latest developments in the fight by subscribing to the DRM Elimination Crew mailing list, the #dbd channel on the Freenode IRC network, and by consulting our resources on the Defective by Design Web site. If you're planning your own digital action this year, please let others know by listing it on the the LibrePlanet wiki page for IDAD 2020. Keep an eye out on that space for more opportunities to help the campaign.

Since we're still in quarantine, the action for this year's IDAD will be more "international" than ever, as we try to translate all the fun and engagement of our successful in-person protests to fully digital activism. Many of the streaming services we oppose may be limited to the US-only, but it's still important for international audiences to oppose them. Like any infestation, the problem gets worse when it's ignored. "The war at home" against streaming services continues, and anti-DRM activists from all over the world will be ready on December 4th to help pave the way to a future without DRM.

Are you an organization or project interested in supporting or sponsoring IDAD?

We're looking for vendors of DRM-free media, organizations that support the building of a DRM-free world, and those who believe in the mission of DbD to participate in this IDAD. You can do this by offering sales, writing blog posts, organizing events, and sharing with your members about IDAD. Please contact us at to let us know what you are planning, so we can amplify your actions, or if you need more information. If you're an organization interested in sponsoring IDAD, please contact us at the same address for more information.

Save the date, and let's make this IDAD a turning point in the fight.