DRM still sucks

This week, our TiVo failed to record one of our favorite shows. More accurately, it recorded some silly Geraldo show instead, probably because the electronic program guide data was incorrect. And unfortunately, the program is not scheduled to rerun in the next few days, so there is no way to re-record it at another time.

After a brief search on Google, I discovered that the episode was available for download for $1.99 on Google video. But, thanks to digital rights management, there was NO way to view the program on our TV. You have to use the Google video player, which is exclusively available for Windows. I briefly considered downloading the program via a peer-to-peer service, but it would be encoded in a format that would need hours to convert to DVD with software I do not own. With great disgust, I paid the $1.99 for the joy of curling up to the computer monitor to watch the TV show.

I fully appreciate that copyright holders want to protect their intellectual property. But I am not interested in paying for content in a format that is worse than what I would normally get for free. I was so annoyed that I started to dream that it wasn’t a ‘mistake’ in the electronic program guide, but rather a conspiracy to get us to pay for the DRM-enabled download.

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