Ok, I'm a law abiding citizen. All laws. Even stupid meaningless laws that I disagree with.
I'm also a computer nerd and that will factor in here.
One of the things that I worry about is the "next generation" getting desensitized to theft due to the "digital age." I get sick of hearing people talk about "sharing" music. Instead of walking into Fred Meyer and shoplifting a CD they simply make a copy from a friend. It's so common that many people don't even view it as a theft even though it is a felony.
I read a lot of tech sites. (A great compilation site that pulls headlines is the Daily Rotation. You can customize it to your taste.) Many argue that copyrights and ownership are a thing of the past and blah blah blah socialist garbage. I've read message boards where the "little guy" (aka the thief) makes bold assertations about how he can never be caught and will never stop "sharing" music, as if he is leading some sort of socialist revolution instead of just being a petty thief, too cheap to fork over $0.99 for a song.
I watch with great interest the tales of the RECORDING INDUSTRY (said in the same ominous tone that you would whisper HALLIBURTON) VS the poor innocent victims who only wanted to "share" some music.
And other than some serious snafus *cough* Sony *cough* I've also applauded the DRM (digital rights management) measures taken to protect intellectual property rights and copyright material... until now.
I just got a new computer. (I'll post the specs in the comments if any of you geeks are interested, it's good stuff.) I attempted to export my playlist from MusicMatch, a worthless piece of software that will never under any circumstances be installed on this uber machine, and it wouldn't let me due to the DRM.
Fine. I manually move the files over my network. One by freakin one. Fine. I then clicked a song, perfectly content to let Windows Media Player play it for the initial time. Denied. DRM says that I have to install MusicMatch (aka The Devil) on my new computer. It says that yes, I do own the music and have every right to copy it to another computer but sorry, I need MusicMatch installed anyways.
Now I'm a smart guy. It will probably take me .0002 seconds to find a program to strip the DRM content from these files so that I can play them with whatever player I want to. BUT WHY DO I HAVE TO?!?!?!?
I'll tell you why: because other people steal. I have to suffer because some of you are convinced that it's ok for you to take things while the rest of us pay for them.
I'm one of the good guys. I paid for these. I own them. But now I join the ranks of many authors of reputable sources (CNET and the like) who say that they too pay for their digital property but HATE the DRM nonsense. It's not stopping the 12 years olds on LimeWire, it's stopping the non-technical folks who pay their $0.99 and then want to move their music library to another computer.
I hope that all digital thieves get prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law and I hope that DRM stops trying to interfere with MY PROPERTY.