|Developer Diary · You Heard It Here First · Sunday 8 February 2004|
|Microsoft and Disney Combine For Copy Protection|
Microsoft and Disney have apparently formed a coalition to push a copy protection scheme. The details have not been announced yet but undoubtedly it revolves around Microsoft's Next-Generation Secure Computing Base (NGSCB), formerly known as "Palladium" which may be premiering in Longhorn. If so this will end the pretence that Microsoft currently putting up that NGSCB is a security infrastructure which will not be used to implement digital rights management (DRM). By partnering with Disney the implication is that NGSCB will have as its first priority the prevention of unauthorized video and music copying.
Microsoft and Disney have been working together for years under legal penumbras such as congressional working groups. In particular Louisiana representative Billy Tauzin, the House chairman of the Commerce Committee, has pushed for these companies and others to develop copy protection schemes upon which legislation could be built. Tauzin, a regular on the corporate social circuit, has impeccable anti-consumer credentials. In fact, he was nominated last year for the presidency of the MPAA even though he is a sitting member of congress. One can only conclude that people in Louisiana must not own computers.
With friends like this in Washington the mouse house and macrosoft apparently feel ready to create a new world where you have to get a samizdat operating system just to copy a file.
The risk in their strategy is that consumers may begin to resort to Linux and the Macintosh if they can no longer copy files with Windows.
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