Give the gift of freedom with the Ethical Technology Giving Guide

With the holidays, Black Friday, and Cyber Monday on the horizon, we know that a lot of you are on the lookout for cool tech gifts to thrill your loved ones. However, we also know that you don't want to trap them with proprietary software and insidious technologies like Digital Restrictions Management (DRM).

Thank you for adding your voice against DRM!

During this year's International Day Against DRM we asked people who want to put an end to Digital Restrictions Management (DRM) to take action with us, and so many of you did.

In addition to the other activities of the day, we penned a letter to Netflix, asking them to remove DRM from their original productions. Since then, we've emailed the letter to the Netflix board, and sent a copy of the letter to their offices.

Copyright Office anti-circumvention study failed, fight back by July 30th

The U.S. Copyright Office finally published its study on the DMCA's anti-circumvention provisions, and is launching into the next round of the exemptions process. ** We need your help by July 30th to support our comment to the Copyright Office calling for renewal of all previously granted exemptions.**

Day Against DRM rocked! Let's keep the pressure on Netflix.

Last Sunday, people around the globe spoke out against Digital Restrictions Management (DRM) through many channels at once. The International Day Against DRM was a confluence of activism to protect our rights and freedoms from the surveillance, unaccountable control, and security threat effects of DRM.

Tell Netflix to Nix DRM on original productions

UPDATE: The petition has been sent to Netflix. Thank you so much to everyone who participated in this action against DRM!

Through the creation of original work, Netflix can no longer hide behind the excuse that they only use DRM due to requirements from the film and television industries. Netflix needs to work for their subscribers, and their subscribers are mistreated by DRM. Please sign the petition below, insisting that Netflix respect the rights of its subscribers!

Today we stand up for digital rights, and that means we stand against DRM

Digital Restrictions Management. DRM. the software that comes bolted to your digital media and computerized devices and tries to police your behavior. The major media companies are its masters, and they justify it as a necessary evil to prevent filesharing, calling it Digital Rights Management. But it does more than that, and worse than that. Giving its owners power over our cars, medical devices, phones, computers, and more, it opens a deep crack in our digital rights and

Tim Berners-Lee approves Web DRM, but W3C member organizations have two weeks to appeal

BOSTON, Massachusetts USA — Friday, July 7, 2017 — Yesterday Tim Berners-Lee, the chief arbiter of Web standards, approved the controversial proposed Digital Restrictions Management (DRM) standard for the Web, Encrypted Media Extensions (EME).

No DRM? No Problem! What you can do on the Day Against DRM (July 9th)

While Digital Restrictions Management (DRM) isn't a thing to celebrate, the work people are doing against it is. This is part of why we organize International Day Against DRM (IDAD), a day to raise awareness about DRM, take community action, and celebrate what is being done by activists, artists, booksellers, farmers, filmmakers, musicians, and publishers.

As the Web's inventor flirts with disaster, Boston artists are putting out a call: March with us this Saturday

Three protest signs against DRM.

Signs from a demonstration at Cambridge, MA city hall last week.

The inventor of the Web is considering allowing corporate interests to change its underlying technology, extending their ability to control users' computers with DRM (Digital Restrictions Management), undermining Internet freedom, and exposing people to surveillance and criminal threats online.

As Web inventor Tim Berners-Lee considers this decision, people around the world are placing hundreds of phone calls urging him not to allow the change. Now a small artist-led group called Ethics in Tech is taking it to the next level—this Saturday, they will march to Berners-Lee's office in Cambridge, MA, to demand he heed the call of human rights groups, tens of thousands of Web users, and his fellow Web pioneers: reject DRM in Web standards and stand up for the free, fair Web that everyone except a handful of big companies wants.

You're probably confused about your media usage rights, and media companies are ok with that

A discussion panel at the event. Six men in suits sit at a long table in front of a projector screen. In the foreground, the author's name plaque is visible on a table.Perzanowski (far right) answers skeptical comments from industry representatives.

When people buy an ebook, do they expect to be able to read it for the rest of their lives? How about the ability to make a backup copy of a movie before their hard drive breaks? For most digital media purchases, these reasonable activities are prevented by DRM (Digital Restrictions Management), but it appears the vast majority of customers don't know it.

Tim Berners-Lee receives Obedience Award for deference to pro-DRM corporations

A plaque, surrounded by laurels, featuring the words 'Obedience Award' and a stick figure saying 'Ok'.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE—Boston, Massachusetts, USA—Thursday, April 13th, 2017—Today Defective by Design granted Tim Berners-Lee the first ever Obedience Award, recognizing his work to help wealthy corporations add DRM (Digital Restrictions Management) to official Web standards. Inspired by the MIT Media Lab Disobedience Award, the Obedience Award highlights activity upholding the status quo despite an overwhelming ethical case against it. Today is the first opportunity for the addition of DRM to become final as per the formal process for setting Web standards.

#DialUp the Web's inventor for online security and rights

An image of a telephone with overlaid text that reads '#DialUp to save the Web from DRM. +1 (617) 253-5702. Tell the Web's inventor: don't endanger our security and rights!'

Since the beginning of the Web—the age of dial-up Internet connections—the W3C (World Wide Web Consortium) has kept the Web's technical standards tuned in a careful balance that enables innovation while respecting users' rights.

On April 13th, that will change. User-hostile DRM (Digital Restrictions Management) technology will become an official part of the Web. Unless we can stop it.

Response to Tim Berners-Lee's defeatist post about DRM in Web standards

Tim Berners-Lee, inventor of the World Wide Web, star of the 2012 Olympics opening ceremony, and one of the best-known tech celebrities outside of Silicon Valley, believes he is powerless.

Well, at least when it comes to keeping Web users free and safe.

Tim Berners-Lee <strike>created</strike> sold out the Web?

What would timbl do? Twenty-five years ago, Berners-Lee invented the World Wide Web. Back then timbl -- as he's known online -- declined opportunities to lock down his creation and established himself as an advocate for a freedom-affirming, interoperable, and universally accessible World Wide Web. Now he's considering turning his back on this vision to make Netflix, Google, Apple, and Microsoft happy.

This lawsuit could be the beginning of the end for DRM

Our friends at the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) recently filed a lawsuit challenging Section 1201 of the US's Digital Millenium Copyright Act, which provides legal reinforcement to the technical shackles of Digital Restrictions Management (DRM). Defective by Design applauds this lawsuit and agrees with

Digital Restrictions Inside: Will the US Federal Trade Commission agree to label DRM-encumbered products?

Have you ever purchased a digital product, only to discover that you couldn't use it as you wish? Maybe you bought your favorite musician's new album and realized that you couldn't make a copy to share with your friend, or you downloaded an ebook that you couldn't read on both your tablet and your desktop computer. Those are both forms of Digital Restrictions Management (DRM) -- technological handcuffs that control how you can use digital media.

Microsoft Edge and Netflix — testing new restrictions by locking out competing browsers?

Microsoft made the news last week when it announced that its Edge Web browser could deliver a better Netflix streaming experience than the other three most popular browsers. On Windows 10, Edge is the only one that can play Netflix's video streams — which are encumbered with Digital Restrictions Management (DRM) — in 1080p high definition. A PCWorld article confirmed the claim, but no one writing online has been able to give a clear explanation for the discrepancy. Following the tone of Microsoft's announcement, most writers seem content to imply that Edge's "edge" in Netflix playback on Windows derives from technical superiority, and that intelligent Netflix users should switch to Edge.

Help us envision future victories in the wake of the Day Against DRM

On Tuesday, people all over the world spoke out against Digital Restrictions Management (DRM) with demonstrations, writings, speeches, discussion groups, social media, and more. The tenth anniversary of the International Day Against DRM was a confluence of activism to protect our rights and freedoms from the surveillance, unaccountable control, and security threats effects of DRM.

It isn't just the DMCA that is broken beyond repair: Copyright Office refuses FSF comments

Activists helped the FSF hand-deliver a comment to the Copyright Office with over twelve-hundred co-signers calling for the repeal of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act's (DMCA) anti-circumvention provisions and the triennial exemptions process, but the Copyright Office refused to accept the comment.

Organize your community for digital freedom on May 3rd

In corner offices around the world, those who profit from Digital Restrictions Management are writing their speeches for this Tuesday, "World Intellectual Property Day."1 This global but decidedly not grassroots event is a project of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). Yes, those are the same wise folks who convinced governments around the world to make it a crime to circumvent DRM even for legal purposes, undercutting digital freedom, security research, and access for those with disabilities.

Plan now for a big impact on the International Day Against DRM

Activists at an Apple store on the 2015 Day Against DRM.

Activists protesting Apple's use of digital restrictions on the 2015 Day Against DRM.

In the last year, we've seen those that profit from Digital Restrictions Management (DRM) move to spread the world's most regressive DRM laws through the TPP trade agreement and pressure technologists to add DRM to Web standards. Their intention is to further strengthen the international system of law and technology that lets them weaken our security and curtail our freedom, in an effort to prop up a business model that is exploitative in the first place.

From the Web to the streets: protesting DRM at the World Wide Web Consortium

Protesters marching outside the W3C office.

Activists around the world protested in solidarity with this demonstration in Cambridge.

On Sunday, we led a protest at the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) against the attempt by Netflix, Hollywood and other technology and media companies to weave Digital Restrictions Management (DRM) into the HTML standard that undergirds the Web.

We've got momentum, but we need more protest selfies to stop DRM in Web standards

Four protesters from around the world

Explore the gallery of photos against DRM in Web standards, and add your own!

Last week, we asked you to show the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) that you wouldn't allow Digital Restrictions Management in the Web's technical standards, and you answered. From around the world, you sent in protest selfies against the proposed restriction standards championed by Netflix, Apple, Microsoft, Google, and Hollywood. With you at our backs, we're organizing a major demonstration this Sunday, outside the building where the W3C will be meeting to discuss DRM. A parallel demonstration is planned outside the W3C office in Amsterdam. Our activism is working -- the campaign has drawn renewed attention to this once low-profile issue and more people are learning that DRM standards would be a major regression for user freedom on the Web.

Show them the world is watching. Stop the Hollyweb.

Two activists at the Cambridge W3C office.

Join these activists and take your own photo at a W3C office near you.

For years, Defective by Design and the anti-DRM movement have been fighting Hollywood and proprietary software companies who want to weave Digital Restrictions Management into the HTML standard that undergirds the Web. Winning this is a top priority for us -- the DRM proposal, known as EME (Encrypted Media Extensions), would make it cheaper and more politically acceptable to impose restrictions on Web users, opening the floodgates to a new wave of DRM throughout the Internet. We've been calling this awful possibility the Hollyweb -- a network riddled with restrictions that serves Hollywood, not its users.

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