Fri, Jan 2 2009 1:35 AM aheram

When Locked Media Fails Spectacularly

Yesterday, reports started to trickle in that the Zune 30 GB, a media device sold by Microsoft, was failing everywhere at once. Fans and users have dubbed it the Y2K9 bug.

From Gizmodo:

Apparently, around 2:00 AM today, the Zune models either reset, or were already off. Upon when turning on, the thing loads up and... freezes with a full loading bar (as pictured above). I thought my brother was the only one with it, but then it happened to my Zune. Then I checked out the forums and it seems everyone with a 30GB HDD model has had this happen to them.

Thankfully, a fix has already been posted by Microsoft. That is, simply wait until January 1st, 2009.

But this incident should be a wake-up call, according to Copyfight.

This should be a clarion warning that using proprietary hardware or software (DRM) to restrict peoples' ability to manage their legally owned content is a bad plan. We are all at the mercy of whatever bugs and bad business plans lie behind these locks.

DRM, or Digital Rights Management, are access controls technologies used by publishers, hardware companies, and content creators to restrict the usage of media, files, or data they sell to consumers. DRM goes beyond copy protection (prevention of unauthorized copying). It restricts what devices the files can be accessed with, what applications it can be used, how many copies can be made, how many times something can be used. DRM locks are innocuous enough as many of them are easily broken, if it were not for the fact it is back by the full power of the state apparatus under the draconian Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DCMA) that makes anyone that attempts or succeeds in circumventing these locks a criminal.

Cross-posted to RedStateEclectic.

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