Fair Use, DRM and Monetizing 'Criminals'

Lance Ulanoff over at Ziff, in a PC Mag piece titled "Fair Use is a Failure" talks about how all copy protection schemes are broken -- how it's really easy, for example to rip DVDs -- and how content producers will find people copying their movies and what-not, if the protection is too onerous. "If you don't give people viewing options, they'll generate them on their own," he writes. Over at Extreme Tech, Jason Cross writes about how all the protection schemes, all the DRM in the various operating systems, games, etc, make his head swim.

I don't know how to completely solve the problem -- other than to do due diligence in trying to protect stuff, expect that some will be "stolen," and do things to "monetize" from those thieves. If folks care enough about the content to hack and crack and get it for free, rather thn paying your price point, they're interested enough in something you do to pay for it, probably. Do go after any major criminals. But for the chump change, see it as a marketing opportunity. This idea works for both B2B and mass consumer models, as well as any part of the long tail.

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