back to article No Widevine DRM for you! Developer left with two years of work stymied by Google snub

In theory, the open source nature of web technology should allow anyone with the appropriate skills to innovate and implement an alternative browser. In practice, however, the path is gated where high value media is involved, because the major browser makers incorporate Digital Rights Management (DRM) technology and the firms …

  1. whitepines
    FAIL

    DRM and excessive copyright strike again!

    And this is why, again, we are stuck with the only option of drastically cutting back copyright durations. 15 to 20 years should do the trick.

    Photographers, writers, artists creating non-DRM content: either you get Hollywood to wake up and play fair with us, or we normal people, fed up with being told how, when, if, where, and under what conditions we can interact with culture, will be cutting copyright back to sane levels. It may not be instant, it will take time, probably a long time, but the forward march of human progress will not be stopped by a few greedy companies. At least not permanently stopped, remember that even the almighty (at the time) Catholic Church was effectively toppled -- this had to happen before the great scientific and cultural revolutions could occur.

    As always, it seems that people that pirate get to actually view the content the way they want to.* For the other creative industries, again, get your politicians to reign in DRM or you too will (sadly) have your works pirated by people that got very used to not paying anything for pirated DRM-free video content.

    If you think you're going to be leaving decades of royalties to your children, DRM actually makes that less likely as piracy ramps up to compensate. Fixing DRM is more likely to allow your children to have a solid royalty package passed on to them -- you can bluster, threaten, try to enforce all you like but most people are fed up and all you'll do is either drive the piracy underground and/or people will start to turn to copyleft and crowdfunded works. There's no future where you win long-term with DRM and draconian legislation without the very real risks of your works being destroyed, and your children jailed, for being critical of the all-powerful state needed to enforce such things. Political winds shift on a faster basis than the duration of copyright -- think about that for a second!

    * At this point people seem to consider piracy a form of civil disobedience, and that's probably a good thing considering the vast majority of our culture in the West is held ransom by these greedy multimedia content-hoarding companies. The sooner they are reigned in, the less collateral damage will happen to non-DRM enforcing copyright holders.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: DRM and excessive copyright strike again!

      This project was trying to bypass DRM in a roundabout way, so it's really no surprise it got refused.

      As someone that pays for content, I'm glad they refused it. Every freeloader costs me money.

      1. whitepines
        Thumb Down

        Re: DRM and excessive copyright strike again!

        As someone that pays for content, I'm glad they refused it. Every freeloader costs me money.

        You do realize that not everyone pirates for the money, right? I've seen people visit a site, run straight up against a DRM limit (unapproved device, ridiculous access terms, etc.), then run straight over to YouTube or their favourite piracy site to get at the content anyway.

        Why do you think you will be so harmed by providing the content in a format that can be played on any device? Watermark it and enforce your copyright, or don't whine about "freeloaders" when you can't be bothered to provide the content in a format your customers want to pay for.

        Hint: I'd pay lots of money for an archival quality, DRM-free but watermarked, copy of my favourite artistic works. I have an extensive audio CD collection, many of which were purchased at retail for full price, for that exact reason. Alas, for now, for video content I settle for the cheapest used DVDs I can find, or just record the content off the telly, since it makes no sense to pay more for something that isn't actually mine to keep (and, yes, loan to friends -- loan, as in I can't watch it while it's loaned out, not copy and redistribute) for as long as I want to.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: DRM and excessive copyright strike again!

        Yep, exactly...

        "It's designed to be a way for friends to watch shows together even when they're apart."

        Is the same as

        "It's designed to be a way for lots of people to watch shows even if they haven't paid for it, don't know the original purchaser and aren't in the same geographic region"

        1. whitepines

          Re: DRM and excessive copyright strike again!

          "It's designed to be a way for lots of people to watch shows even if they haven't paid for it, don't know the original purchaser and aren't in the same geographic region"

          It would seem this would be an easy thing to check, no? Especially in this world of Big Data Google et. al. probably know who your friends are better than you do.

          That all being said, this project does seem to be stretching the limits of what would be reasonable under copyright (before TV and VCRs, the very notion of "viewing the same thing at a distance" would boil down to two copies of the same book and talking over the telephone). However, since Hollywood has been stretching the limits of copyright the other way, all the way to "we will unilaterally set limits on how you can view this legally paid for content, and don't even think of reselling or loaning it", I don't give a toss at this point -- I'll consider the above distance viewing unreasonable when they allow me to watch a blu-ray etc. on any device I want and also back it up as I desire.*

          * And no bloody forcing me to stream something, with no option to purchase a copy, to engage in culture -- I draw the line there, and will gladly call anyone consuming streaming-only content an addicted media junkie to their face! It's one thing to support the local theatre, where people have to actually act in front of you each time. Or the symphony, or a live concert, where musicians have to play their instruments or sing live. But to continually pay like a drug addict for something that the studio has no real extra cost to reproduce....that's morally wrong and people know it if they can be separated from their mind control device smartphone long enough to regrow a brain.

          1. David 132 Silver badge

            Re: DRM and excessive copyright strike again!

            Hey @Whitepines, to paraphrase (supposedly) Churchill: don't wrestle with AC pigs. You'll both end up muddy, and the pig will enjoy it.

        2. ibmalone Silver badge

          Re: DRM and excessive copyright strike again!

          As someone else commented elsewhere in the thread, my take-home from this was that it simply synced up your legitimate viewing, and from, the shots on the home-page, allowed you to exchange comments live with your friends. Not a great deal of detail on their home-page but basing this on the description in the article "that allows users to stream videos in sync with one another.": 'in sync with' not 'to'. Additionally their fairly limited features description on the site is: "Build up the queue" "Browse for your favorite media and add the URL to the queue. A number of popular websites are already supported for playback."

          Not everyone's cup of tea, but seems quite innovative, and I imagine some people would enjoy doing this.

          1. MOH

            Re: DRM and excessive copyright strike again!

            That's exactly the impression I got. I've a friend who does this quite a lot with his GF who lives abroad - they both watch the same show at the same time (legally, on Netflix) while Skyping each other. But syncing exactly is always a pain for them. TBH it's the kind of thing Netflix et al should just incorporate, but when someone independently tries to do it DRM rears its ugly head.

            Would be very surprised if Google don't just nick his idea and release their own version in a year or so. Then probably drop support for it after two years after harvesting all the data they need.

      3. Olivier2553

        Re: DRM and excessive copyright strike again!

        This project was trying to bypass DRM in a roundabout way

        We have a very different understanding of what this project is about.

        I undestand it is a way to synchronize several browsers, to watch a movie, each viewer having his full copyrighted and paid for version of the movie, but watch in a synchronous way, like when you are in a theater, so you can react to the movie in real time, with your friends.

        Ho where in the article it is even hinted that it would be a way to by pass DRM.

      4. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: DRM and excessive copyright strike again!

        "As someone that pays for content, I'm glad they refused it. Every freeloader costs me money."

        As a freeloader, I'm glad that the gullible continue to fund my DRM free content :-)

      5. unimaginative

        Re: DRM and excessive copyright strike again!

        You assume that the people selling to price fairly to cover the cost of production.

        What they actually do is price to maximise profit, and as marginal cost of production are negligible that means pricing to maximise revenue, so lost sales will not affect the price you pay

      6. HelpfulJohn

        Re: DRM and excessive copyright strike again!

        "As someone that pays for content, I'm glad they refused it. Every freeloader costs me money."

        My Kobo Vox works just fine, however, I can't read the last couple of e-books I paid for on it. Why? Because Kobo changed their DRM machinery to exclude that machine. My Vox won't even download these e-books never mind read them.

        Worse, I recently got an email from Kobo telling me that they were ceasing to support "old, obsolete technologies" like my lovely Vox, which still works fine. Indeed, they told me it won't even *connect* to the e-bookstore, so it doesn't synchronise to re-download the cover images to books that are already "in" my Vox's library. I see a blank icon that doesn't tell me which book is which. That is truly disheartening, discouraging and not exactly conducive to me ever paying them for any more books. Why? Because they are just not getting enough money from me when I don't buy new boxes from them every year or so but continue to use an "old, obsolete" machine.

        DRM is evil, unnecessary and greedy. I should be able to read my Kobo e-books on any electronic device, just as I can read a paperback on a train. in the bath or under the Arctic ice in a submarine, I see no moral difference. I should be able to email my used e-books to my sister, if I had one. I can mail her a paperback, I see no moral difference.

        Only massive amounts of money have created a *legal* difference.

        Note: I fully understand that the Vox's battery will, after some hundreds of recharges, crap out and that because they made it a sealed unit the Vox will then be utterly useless unless tethered to the mains and possibly even then if the power manager doesn't allow a boot without a valid battery but the battery pack seems to charge just fine, as yet, so that is no reason to force me to buy another box. Even were battery death a reason to buy *something* it would only be a valid reason to buy a new *battery*. There should *never* be anything battery-powered that is sold as sealed against replacing the pack. That, too, is evil greed.

    2. sabroni Silver badge

      Re: DRM and excessive copyright strike again!

      Hardly.

      The intransigence of Google over this issue isn't technically related to the fact it's DRM. They could be dicks about licensing any of their software if they wanted to be.

      And I'm confused by the "this is to enable piracy" argument. DRM is supposed to mean that content won't be usable unless licensed. How does including DRM in this browser do the opposite?

      1. ibmalone Silver badge

        Re: DRM and excessive copyright strike again!

        Think some commenters have arrived at the understanding that it's streaming the video from one logged in user's browser to others, however that doesn't seem to chime with the description in the article. (Also I find it hard to believe anyone would expect google to give them access to the DRM system to do such a thing, or at least would expect them to be making different arguments for it if it did.)

      2. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

        Re: DRM and excessive copyright strike again!

        "How does including DRM in this browser do the opposite?"

        They are terrified that their DRM code in an open source project might lead to the ability to de-DRM the streams. They don't have a lot of confidence in their black-box DRM module.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: DRM and excessive copyright strike again!

          "They are terrified that their DRM code in an open source project might lead to the ability to de-DRM the streams. They don't have a lot of confidence in their black-box DRM module."

          Those tools already exist. And are updated often within hours of changes to DRM schemes. Whack-a-mole. Just look at the number of ripped streams on BitTorrent...

    3. LDS Silver badge

      Re: DRM and excessive copyright strike again!

      Once again, this has nothing to do with copyright duration - as most people are interested in streaming actual contents - not those of twenty years ago.

      Pirating football live streams has nothing to do with copyright duration. Pirating movies actually in theaters has nothing to do with copyright duration - nobody would wait twenty years to see the latest Star War movie for free. Some, sure, will be happy to make money reusing contents they never created after that time. It's easier and cheaper than creating original ones.

      Pirating is not civil disobedience, because you have no right on a movie, song, live event, etc.. Those are commercial products, and as such are produced and sold to make money. If you don't like to pay, there are plenty of alternatives. But people like you are just obsessed to get them for free, sure, they are all greedy products from the same greedy companies, but, like a drug-addicted, it looks you can't live without. Want to destroy those greedy companies? Ignore their products, wholly, it's so simple!

      Yet, once you destroyed them one way or the other, once those products won't bring in any revenue, do you believe someone will still make them, just for the glory?

      Your total lack of understanding on how different products and markets lead to different revenue streams over time - you still think only about blockbuster movies (ah, that evil Disney!!!), songs, and maybe books - make you think that your idea would create the "best possible world" but would actually destroy a lot of products which woud be no longer viable to produce.

      Like all libertarians and anarchists, you strongly believe others should live out of thin air and be never paid for their work. Only yours is valuable and have to be paid well - so you can buy whatever you can't still steal.

      Yet, beware advocating for destroying property rights - the next properties people size could be yours...

      1. whitepines
        WTF?

        Re: DRM and excessive copyright strike again!

        Pirating is not civil disobedience, because you have no right on a movie, song, live event, etc.

        OK, let's play that game. I now claim you have no right to store even snippets or advertising of your restricted media in my limited, finite mental storage, nor to prevent my independent creation of works that are very similar to yours or happen to use similar characters. As a result, I decree that you owe me rental fees for the rest of my life since I have no known way of removing that information from my internal mental storage. For good measure, I think my great grandchildren should also live well, so pay them too.

        Oh, and "pirating"? You idiots have already diluted that phrase to include "playing a legally purchased DVD on a Linux system", so you only have yourselves to thank for the resultant confusion. Be careful...accusing someone of not paying for a DVD when they in fact have, but were "pirating" by decrypting that DVD for viewing on an unapproved device, could be construed as libel in the best case. The latter, deciding we want to view our purchased content in some manner you don't like, most certainly is civil disobedience; you have no right to be in our flats watching us to make sure we don't break your precious DRM systems. You are the ones infringing on our rights. Don't like it? Don't publish your works -- you can hoard them just the same in a closet somewhere for your own enjoyment.

        You copyright maximalists always forget there are two sides to societal problems, thinking that you can just sit there as royalty, forever forcing the serfs to slave to keep your coffers full and this will somehow solve all problems -- nay, rather, that it is somehow your right to do so.

        As usual, your will completely gloss over the fact that you copyright maximalists and content hoarders have given us, the general public, no other choice than to start reigning in copyright. Just limiting copying wasn't good enough, no, you wanted to have permanent control over how we see your content by not actually giving a copy of the work, but an encrypted version that you "license" for decryption on your own unilateral terms. You expect us to sit here and do nothing while you continue to make the copyright deal worse and worse -- 100 years ago, we bought a book and we owned the book. Now you expect us to pay per view while you sit over our shoulders and watch all aspects of our private lives, then tell us if we can ever watch it again and under what conditions this privilege might be granted. You're infringing on our rights and, what's worse, you don't even seem to realize it. Even if you yourself won't do this, you've allowed your fellow copyright maximalists to do this with not so much as a warning to them that the public might not stand for this -- then act all surprised have the audacity and call anyone wanting to reign in this abuse "pirates".

        You're fast making the concept of a world without any copyright at all a very attractive one -- even if it means no more commercial movies. At this point it might be for the best.

        Grow up and get a real job. If you can't make money off your lucky photos in 20 years, you're a terrible photographer or you need to travel more to increase your luck. Don't whine and suck on the public teat like a loser just because you want to sit and play "artist" instead of working like the rest of the world.

    4. Charlie Clark Silver badge

      Re: DRM and excessive copyright strike again!

      And this is why, again, we are stuck with the only option of drastically cutting back copyright durations. 15 to 20 years should do the trick.

      Any film older than five years is largely TV filler material, for sports the limit is probably six months at most. But I'm sure quite a few living authors, artists and musicians would disagree with such a drastic restriction. Note, these aren't necessarily the people lobbying for copyright and DRM as the publishers have been stiffing them for years.

      At the time of the introduction of EME (the blackbox that browsers have to use) there was extensive debate about how evil the approach was and how it wouldn't stop determined pirates. But, at the end of the day, many considered it the lesser of two evils, with the alternative being the persistence of tightly controlled and entirely proprietary solutions such as Flash, QuickTime and Silverlight.

      DRM does punish law-abiding users while failing to prevent piracy but I think it's going to be a long time before the content owners realise this, and even when they do, admit it.

      1. Mage Silver badge
        Devil

        Re: excessive copyright duration?

        20 or 25 years after creators death, i.e. the creator children. The 75 years is mostly benefiting large corporations and not estates. Corporations that made a huge profit in the 1st 5 years.

        If the book,program, magazine, DVD, CD etc is out of print for maybe 5 years, then the copyright should revert to the author(s), or if that's inappropriate, then public domain.

        DRM locks content out of public domain forever, except the pirate copies.

        1. Charlie Clark Silver badge

          Re: excessive copyright duration?

          DRM locks content out of public domain forever, except the pirate copies.

          Separate issues but an important point: items automatically pass into the public domain when the copyright expires and most countries have mechanisms for facilitating this (national libraries, etc.). DRM can restrict users from legitimately accessing their own licensed content if, for example, the keys are revoked, some kind of server is unavailable, device no longer works.

          It's for this reason that I strip the DRM of everything I have, if possible (Epubor has some good tools for this), and avoid streaming services, which, as Andrew Orlowski has noted elsewhere, generally pay the artists less.

        2. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

          Re: excessive copyright duration?

          "If the book,program, magazine, DVD, CD etc is out of print for maybe 5 years, then the copyright should revert to the author(s), or if that's inappropriate, then public domain."

          Have you ever wondered how some shops seem to have a permanent sale? They sell goods at full price for the legal minimum time in one shop so as to be able to claim 50% discount later in all the other shops. I can just imagine a "Copyrights'R'Us" warehouse in the middle of nowhere with a huge stock consisting of one single copy each of books, films etc "made available" to the public for purchase. If they can find the place.

    5. beast666
      Pint

      Re: DRM and excessive copyright strike again!

      Whitepines you deserve free beer/smoke/whatever.

      Have you thought about writing an article with your thoughts for El Reg or elsewhere?

      Gotta be worth a few quid. ;-)

      1. whitepines
        Thumb Up

        Re: DRM and excessive copyright strike again!

        Have you thought about writing an article with your thoughts for El Reg or elsewhere?

        I'd give it a go if they wanted such a blatant DRM/copyright hit piece....oh wait, this is El Reg after all. Maybe it's possible!

        All jesting aside, absolutely. If we don't stand up and change the bad laws, we have only ourselves to blame for what happens next. Viewing a DVD on a Linux machine shouldn't be a crime, no more than playing a commercial record on a homemade phonograph would be, but it is. Step one is public awareness, and a full article explaining just how badly our pre-existing leave to create new works, to view existing (paid) works as we want without fear of group censorship, and to keep snoopy corporations out of our private lives has been completely and utterly trampled might do the trick.

        What say you, Reg editors?

    6. unimaginative

      Re: DRM and excessive copyright strike again!

      I agree with most of what you say, but your history is not accurate:

      "At least not permanently stopped, remember that even the almighty (at the time) Catholic Church was effectively toppled -- this had to happen before the great scientific and cultural revolutions could occur."

      Not really, there were common causes of both - the invention of printing, increased trade, increased wealth.

      The only economist I know of to actually try to analyse this (Rufus Pollock) came up with a 15 year durations as optimal. Its looks about right from a simpler point of view too because under any reasonable assumptions the NPV of cashflows more than 15 years out is pretty small.

      1. whitepines
        Boffin

        Re: DRM and excessive copyright strike again!

        I agree with most of what you say, but your history is not accurate

        OK, that one's on me...I was handwaving excessively, trying to condense the spirit of things down, and it shows.

        In reality as you say there was a lot of back and forth, the Church slipped up a number of places where they could have reimposed their control but for whatever reason did not. Why the printing press wasn't banned entirely I'm not sure, or at least limited to select government facilities -- it's not like making your own press was particularly easy in those days before standardization of mechanical parts and dimensions, or that it would be particularly covert to use one in the pre-industrial ages (think paper and ink -- often hand made at that time, a press needs great quantities of both. Transported by hand or by wagon.)

        I personally suspect a level of greed played in here, which mirrors what we see with copyright today. Wanting to to have ones' cake and eat it too on such a grand scale is a fast track to the "in a less civilized time" section of the history books...

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    What the point of DRM

    if you let the first person in that came up with a BS reason to circumvent

    1. whitepines
      Joke

      Re: What the point of DRM

      if you let the first person in that came up with a BS reason to circumvent

      Hey, I've got a great new movie for you to watch! Just click "I Accept"....

      What's that? All you see is static and all you hear is noise? Well, we thought our content was better protected if we never decrypt it. And since you <clicky clicky> do seem to have accepted our terms of purchase, we'll be expecting your public positive review of how you love the movie in 24 hours or we'll sue.

      All DRM is pointless when it focuses on restricting viewing / end user copying. It grows a lot more teeth when you watermark instead and engage the courts, which have the legal ability to track down, jail, and fine people, for copying and posting the thing in the first place. Those teeth grow a lot sharper when you have the public backing you up -- right now, the public hates you for putting the DRM on in the first place and is siding with the pirates. Not a good place to be.

  3. RyokuMas Silver badge
    Devil

    Not a monopoly, honest...

    "I'm sorry but we're not supporting an open source solution like this,"

    Odds on this exact functionality appearing in the next few updates of Chrome???

    1. Korev Silver badge

      Re: Not a monopoly, honest...

      Exactly what I was thinking. Facebook already has "Watch Parties"

  4. Solarflare
    Unhappy

    Why is there an asterix at the end of Chrome? There isn't another one anywhere to explain it? It's annoying me far more than it chould.

    1. diodesign (Written by Reg staff) Silver badge

      We try to avoid asterisk notes, as it's annoying to scroll to the bottom and back up again. An asterisked note was supposed to be moved but got lost. It's now sorted.

      Don't forget to email corrections@theregister.com if you spot anything wrong.

      C.

      1. Pat Att

        What about having a link on the asterisk that when you hover over it comes up with a little text box that disappears when the mouse moves off it? That wouldn't be too annoying.

      2. Dan 55 Silver badge

        Make the asterisk a hyperlink to the note at the bottom.

    2. This post has been deleted by its author

    3. DropBear

      It could have been worse. They could have put in an unmatched brace...

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        And that's why we all love Python.

    4. MOH

      You're obviously trying to view the footnote on an unsupported browser, and DRM is rightly preventing you viewing it since you haven't purchased a license to do so

  5. Peter Galbavy
    Facepalm

    DRM and cartels... shocked?

    DRM being used to raise the barrier the new entrants? I'm shocked! I'm socked to find gambling in the café!

    1. Mage Silver badge

      Re: DRM and cartels... shocked?

      Yes, DRM is all about controlling markets and distribution. It's a lie about it maintaining copyright. Industrial pirates have never much been impacted by DRM. Also DRM is incompatible with innovation and the traditional concepts of copyright. It's even added to content originating in the public domain.

  6. Gene Cash Silver badge
    Unhappy

    Where's DVD Jon when ya need him...?

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Is it really a DRM issue ?

    Seems to me more an issue of someone not being able to use someone elses code ? Could have happened if I'd written a world-class database engine that relied on a 3rd party component ?

    Rather than bewailing the DRM aspect, and have the copyright lobby on your back, it's really an issue that Google are the only game in town for browsers. Or so this story suggests ??????

    1. whitepines

      Re: Is it really a DRM issue ?

      Rather than bewailing the DRM aspect, and have the copyright lobby on your back, it's really an issue that Google are the only game in town for browsers

      I don't think they're as entirely separate as you think. Chrome reached this point partly because people watch Netflix and Amazon through Widevine, and for every one of us IT folk that might think twice, there are dozens of consumers that will just blindly install whatever they are told to get their next video fix. Firefox ships with DRM off by default and I get an error? Best install Chrome like good ol' Uncle Amazon says I should....

      And, as bluntly as I can put this, when the copyright lobby moved from stopping copying and illegal distribution (piracy, in the correct definition) to intruding on the general public's otherwise private lives, they became something that badly needs to be put back in their place and / or eliminated. It's time we all stop ignoring the elephant in the room -- without a DRM lobby, Google would not be in the position they are in now where they can literally write Web standards.

    2. Charlie Clark Silver badge

      Re: Is it really a DRM issue ?

      DRM is required by the content owners and they rely on the various vendors of DRM technology to enforce it. As the article notes, Apple and Microsoft have similar solutions tied to their browser / OS / hardware, with Widevine the only generally available solution. As can be expected with such a gatekeeper function, licensing isn't straightforward: you must sign and NDA and convince the licensor that you will implement the DRM layers, eg. no high resolution for a software only situation. Vendors are under no obligation to license their software and you can argue that there is a market for DRM solutions. But given that they can only use a DRM solution that content owners approve of, and also want something that "just works", you can't see any distributor complaining about the lack of choice or even of licence fee.

      Over time we've seen a move away from DRM for music and, to a lesser extent, e-books, so we might see this at some point with video, though I for one won't be holding my breath. Content owners might indeed over time be making themselves dependent upon the developers of DRM (you can see how Google and Apple might get preferential rates) but as long as they're being paid they probably don't care.

  8. Dan 55 Silver badge

    "I'm sorry but we're not supporting an open source solution like this"

    I wonder why they supply a plug-in to Firefox then or why Chromium can be furtled to use Chrome's plug-in...

  9. phuzz Silver badge
    Pirate

    "Browsers and other apps can't stream videos from major content providers legally without integrating some form of DRM system."

    If only there was some sort of alternative for people to turn to >>>>>>>>>>>>

  10. Korev Silver badge

    DRM alternative

    What about a video at the start of every film warning of the consequences of piracy.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "For the last two years, I’ve been working on a web browser"

    And there's his problem. He should've been drinking and trying to score with chicks instead.

    Silly boy.

  12. jelabarre59 Silver badge

    In a blog post on Tuesday, Maddock lamented, "For the last two years, I’ve been working on a web browser that now cannot be completed because Google, the creators of the open source browser Chrome, won’t allow DRM in an open source project are assholes."

    There, FTFY

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I actively fight against DRM

    I never view protected content in my browser and I unchecked the "Play DRM-controlled content" in my browser settings as a form of protest. Oh, and I'm not visiting any pirate stuff site. Of course, no streaming of any kind.

    I sometimes buy DVDs or Blue-Ray years after they're released (it's a bargain). Yes, I know they're DRMed to the upper eyelid but since I'm not interested in copying the content I don't quite care.

    Your opinion may (is allowed/encouraged to) vary. Wildly!

  14. luminous

    Optional

    Seems to me that using Chromium as his base was the mistake from the start. Google will always act like this. Why didn't he consider another engine and much more open source friendly outfit?

    1. Updraft102

      Re: Optional

      Google will always act like this. Why didn't he consider another engine and much more open source friendly outfit?

      Mozilla, you mean? It uses Widevine too.

  15. Christian Berger

    There should be laws again DRM

    DRM allows one side of the table to unfairly impose technical restrictions upon the other side. Unfortunately, back when DRM was legalized (around 2000) to few people cared about it have large protests.

    1. Updraft102

      Re: There should be laws again DRM

      There was DRM a long time before 2000. VHS video tapes looked bad when they were copied, alternating between light and dark, in the 1980s. It was a deliberate DRM scheme, although then they called it "copy protection." Software for the Commodore 64 had intentional errors written to the floppy disk, and if the software was able to read those sectors without an error, it would refuse to run. I'm sure that was used on a lot more than Commodore floppies, but that was what I was familiar with at the time.

      The desire to control is nothing new. The ability has just gotten a lot worse as the tech improves, and the content providers have a lot more money with which to bribe politicians than people who just want to watch a movie or make an innocuous Youtube video that may happen to have three seconds of a copyrighted song playing in the background.

      1. whitepines

        Re: There should be laws again DRM

        Sure, but at that time it was also possible for technical users to, if they really wanted to, essentially build a VCR from existing parts. Also no cameras, Internet, or general spying going on so why would one bother?

        The equation changed when Hollywood and other greedy people decided taking money wasn't enough, no, now they want to sell subscriptions where before they'd sell a VHS. And they aren't content with the subscription fees, no, they want hardware fees (to buy the crappy locked spying players) and access to personal details (what you're watching, when, with who, etc.) to increase future addictiveness.

        And under the changed terms my answer is simple: Piss off. When blurays are no longer released that work with my (never Internet-connected), non-spying, first generation player, I won't even buy them on the used market. And if anyone asks me about some film they saw, I'll just ask why they handed over their personal life details to see something. Could be fun!

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: There should be laws again DRM

          "When blurays are no longer released that work with my (never Internet-connected), non-spying, first generation player, I won't even buy them on the used market."

          I thought I would be doing that too, but due to the hassle involved I simply skipped getting an under the TV DVD/Bluray disc player altogether. Instead, I got a drive for the computer and now I just watch them on that. Unfortunately, the creators don't want to make it easy for me to watch them the way I want to, so I am forced to remove the DRM off the discs and store the content on my HDDs so I can watch them on my choice of playback equipment (a Linux-based PC). Ironically, if all the DVD and Bluray discs that I have bought had just worked out of the box on my choice of playback equipment, then I would never have ended up with 100s of them stored DRM-free on my hard drives. The stricter DRM becomes, and the greater the privacy invasion of being spied upon by internet connected disc players, the more people have to circumvent it just to honestly use the content they buy.

      2. Christian Berger

        Re: There should be laws again DRM

        I should have been a bit more clearer, around 2000 circumventing such systems became illegal which caused a problem. I mean before that you could just buy or build Macrovision removers.

  16. Dedobot

    If we can somehow stop purchase/ pirate HW Bs content, a month after they will begging us on his knees to watch it for Free ! The producers I mean .

    1. whitepines
      Joke

      But how do you get Rose's mother from the (only original good) Dr. Who series to unglue herself from the telly for an entire month? Sure, trying to glue her to her phone might work, but how to get all that celebrity trash onto such a tiny screen?

      Oh, the Daily Wail, that might work...

      Again, all jesting aside, if this happened the trick would be to make sure that "free to watch" was free to watch with that DRM checkbox in the browsers unchecked. Otherwise we're back to square one.

  17. bigtreeman

    AHRRRRR

    AHRRR,

    Where's yur buccaneers ?

    on yur buckin head !

    fork DRM

POST COMMENT House rules

Not a member of The Register? Create a new account here.

  • Enter your comment

  • Add an icon

Anonymous cowards cannot choose their icon

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2021