Everyone already knows about Sony’s recent self-inflicted troubles regarding its atrocious Digital Rights Management scheme for music CDs. Installing spyware on customer computers is stupid under every circumstance, but it’s particularly infuriating when used to prevent customers from a fair use of the product. As I understand “fair use”, I can make a copy of the music to play in a manner convenient to me. In the case of music, that means my iPod. I’ve seen varying reports, but at best, Sony’s spyware protection scheme makes the rip/import process through iTunes to the iPod burdensome. At worst, the process isn’t possible. It doesn’t take an MBA to figure out that Sony implemented an anti-customer method.
I didn’t insert an infected Sony CD into my PC, so I sympathize with Sony in its intent to protect its interests. Yet, I’m living in 2005. I like technology and how it makes my life more enjoyable. Who could’ve guessed fifteen years ago that I could carry my entire collection of music and audiobooks with me everywhere and it would require as much space as a deck of playing cards. That’s a great advance in lifestyle. Yet, Sony is for some reason stuck in 1993, with only a grudging, occasional nod to 1999. That’s dinosaur thinking. Dinosaurs are extinct. Figure out a way for me to use your product, with the assumption that I will use it reasonably and pay you for the privilege. Do not assume that I’m a thief. Treat me like that once and I won’t come back as a customer.