So, part of the problem with the whole music DRM issue is this: People are stupid.
It never occurred to the Napstroids that no, there really is a difference between making a mix tape or CD for a friend or two, and, via P2P, effectively making an infinite number of CDs for an infinite number of people in a trice. RIAA may not have liked tapes, or CD burners, but face it, they weren't really being hurt by it either.
I hear the flames starting...shut up, I'm not done.
RIAA was stupid too, hell is stupid. It never occured to them that people would notice something. Like how the quality of the stuff on CD hasn't gone up in over 20 years. Oh, they have nicer players, but that's just some minor oversampling and skip protection, along with digital studios. But it's still 44.1KHz, and 16 bits, and it's still fucking flaccid. Yes. CD audio is flaccid. As flaccid as Janet's right tit. Deal. They never thought that anyone would realize...
If I can buy CD blanks for a quarter a pop, and I just read about a monster royalty being two dollars a disc, why did that Jet CD cost me damned near twenty dollars?Face it, other than the occasional pretty packaging, I haven't seen a real improvement in CDs in the last 20 years. The packaging still sucks too.
The problem isn't hordes of Shawn Fannings, out to get the simple, honest, Amish-like folk at RIAA. It's that buying a CD makes you feel like you just got dry - fucked in the ass by a concertina wire - wrapped dildo. The big Lexington Steele model. People aren't pirating music because they're evil. They're pirating because they get treated like shit at every stage of the game. If you treat your customers like shit, what do you expect?
This is why the DVD biz is so much better.
On the couch next to me is a legally bought copy of "Pirates of the Carribean". Cost at the Nebraska Furniture Mart? $25.00US. About the same as a dual - disc CD.
Now, let's see...the sound quality on the DVD is so much better than the CD, that you cannot compare. It's better than Vinyl. CD audio sucks ass. It's decent enough I suppose...for twenty years ago. For today? Tin cans and string man, tin cans and string.
(Oh stfu about MP3 or AAC. I know that's worse, but it's more portable, and convenient. Besides, for The Donnas, you need a big dynamic range?)
I get 5.1 surround with THX features. Neat. What do I get on the CD? Why, stereo. Ooooh...and that's only what, 50+ years old in popular use? Why isn't that on CDs? Who wouldn't want to feel like they're on stage with Stevie Ray Vaughan with 5.1 sound? Hell, most car systems have enough speakers. Why hasn't audio progressed? Hell, if you count the death of Quadraphonic in the 70s, it's gotten worse.
So right now, based on audio only, the DVD wins. By a dimension. Literally. The packaging is very nice. Lush colors, textures. A case that is easy to hold, and shelve. Why the fuck can't CDs just use DVD cases? They're the SAME FUCKING SIZE! Oh wait, that might make CDs pleasant to buy. Silly me.
The disks are packaged in a way that makes them easy to get to. True, some DVD cases are put together by refugees from
Night of 1000 corpses, but those are the exception, not the rule. So far, quite pleasant.
Now, lets look at content. The original movie: two hours and 23 minutes. This twenty five dollars, that will at most, buy me maybe two hours and 40 minutes of nasty CD audio gives me...something like 12 hours of stuff. It links to the Internet. It's like a fucking treasure trove, (how appropriate here) of coolness. Got a shit-kicking TV? No problem, the DVD has some high-quality video for that toy. I can spend over half a day and be doing something new every minute, and if I have the hardware, damned near replicate the theater experience, (I say nearly, since I don't have to deal with inappropriatly - aged kids, loud fucktards or cell phones. So I don't completely replicate the theatre experience. Oh well, I suppose I'll just have to deal somehow.) for the same $25 that keeps me busy for just under three hours, and it's the same busy I could have gotten in 198-fucking 3!
But suppose I didn't see this fine example of pirate-y coolness. What if I'm not sure I want to buy it? No prob, hi-ho, hi-ho, to Blockbuster I go. I'll spend a five, and watch tonight, hi-ho, hi-hohi-hohi-ho. I can rent the movie for a couple of days, and watch it before I buy it. Not at some dipwad "listening station". But at home. In my underroos, drinking bourbon, and farting when someone on screen opens their mouth without saying anything. In whatever fashion that defines
movie-watching comfortfor me.
In other words, it's pretty damned nice, the whole renting movies thing.
Buying music sucks ass, with one real exception. (Well, two, but I'm not telling you where God's used LP store is.)
The iTunes Music Store, aka iTMS. (No url, if you don't have iTunes, it will do you no good, and if you do, you don't need it.) I can go in, search, find (or not) buy my crack...er...music...and get the fuck out, FAST. No figuring out where I can play song a vs. song b. In out, wham-bam-gimme my fuckin' music. Yeah, it has DRM. Boo-hoo. But it's kind of a lame, easily dealt with DRM.
So it's like a titty twister.
Now, if you've never had a titty twister, heh...ask a male friend, I'm sure one will oblige...sucker. But anyway, if that's the worst you've ever had, it hurts...pretty bad. But if you've just gotten your rectum reamed by RIAA's Razor - Bladed Dildo of Doom for the umpteenth time, then that titty twister seems pretty fucking nice. And face it, Steve Jobs is a bit of a hippy, and a vegan, so it's not like he's going for the uber, purple nurple-dear-god-I'll-blow-you-if-you-sto
So yeah DRM sucks, but the iTMS is like American Democracy. It sucks so bad, except that it's better than everything else.
As long as the MPAA treats me like it has, I'll buy me some DVDs and not bother copying them. Why should I, I get my money's worth, there's no incentive to spend time and space ripping DVDs.
But RIAA? Man, they make it so you cackle with joy when you pirate music.
Maybe when they stop being stupid, they'll see that trend reverse. Don't bet on it.