Signs the DRM house of cards is collapsing.
By sommerfeld on Feb 06, 2007
I'm happy to see Steve Jobs' open letter to the music industry where he calls for the end of DRM on downloadable music. I'm happy to say that I have on the order of 5200 tracks on my ipod, none of which were purchased from iTunes. I have a legitimate fair-use right to all of them. The vast majority were ripped from CD's I own and which I still possess. Some of the rest are podcasts (offered freely to all); some were mp3's of performances I participated in. None were downloaded from file sharing services. Steve's open letter refers to "secrets" being the key to security. General principles of cryptography say that in secure systems, the only secrets should be changeable and limited in scope. The nature of DRM is such that you'll typically end up with the same set of secrets in every device/player which needs access to the plaintext content, which is what led to the collapse of the DVD CSS scheme and its followons for HD DVD's. Time after time people learn the hard way that you can't effectively hide secrets in binary object code -- given enough time and digging it will be possible to dig any keys and algorithms out of the blob of code.