Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Apple Drops DRM - For Pete sake Don't Panic!

The answer to the piracy problem in the early 2000 was DRM (digital rights management). The technology failed to deliver at making the market "safe" for creators of digital products. Don't read too much into this announcement from Apple.

In case you didn't know EMI and many independent record companies released products through ITunes prior to this announcement without DRM. Now the rest of the 10m tracks will be by the end of the quarter. Part of the message is that now ITunes downloads will work on other types of devices.

One concept behind these decisions is that to thwart piracy, the price of digitally distributable product has to come down and you have to give consumers the conveniences they want. So now we will see $.69, $.99 and $1.29 downloads. Make it easy, make it cheap and you sell more of it.

What can you say, it is an imperfect world and at least we are witnessing movement. The worst thing that could happen is that everything stays the same. It won't do anyone any good to continue playing the victim. Trends are in motion.

Victims give up, go home and don't follow their dreams. This is the season for the Creator of art who is creating it for the right reasons. Create it because you have to, it is who you are. If companies with the overheads of Universal, Sony, and EMI can make money on $.69 downloads, so can you.

This is not part of some doomsday for creators, this is the season of liberation. Wake up, smell the coffee and go create something cool for the world to experience.

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