Weekend Open Forum: DRM in games and music, does it prevent you from buying?

By on October 17, 2008, 7:24 PM
Nobody on its right mind would dare to defend DRM (Digital rights management) in front of a web crowd, unless you represent one of the few enterprises pushing it forward, of course.

Itís a simple fact of life, the consumer has never been pro-DRM, and for the right reasons. But among the different types of restrictions and scenarios of how DRM is being used today, two specific cases come to mind as examples of poor implementations or just DRM gone awry for the consumer side.

Only this year, three major online music stores (MSN, Yahoo, Walmart) announced they would be taking their DRM servers offline, rendering consumerís music purchases useless to play on new computers. Eventually these companies backed down and extended their deadlines by a few years, but in some of the cases itís only a matter of time.

On the gaming side, the DRM flop of the year has to be Spore. After much anticipation prior to its release, the game got smashed everywhere online because of the copy prevention software that came built into the game. Just yesterday it was also announced that another hit title, Far Cry 2 will be using the same SecuROM DRM software, though restrictions are expected to be less severe.

Yet, for many these imposed restrictions are enough for not spending any money in online music or games. Is this your case? Have you had good/bad experiences with DRM restrictions as outlined above? How could developers and the music industry create a safer environment to generate sales without punishing the paying consumer?

Discuss.




User Comments: 28

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windmill007 said:
Well yeah. For sure I would never buy any music unless it is at least 320VBR Mp3's. Unfortunately I have yet to find on legit music place that sells that. Sure there are a few Mp3 without DRM but unfortunately the quality isn't that great. You can tell a difference if you have high end equipment. And why would anyone buy anything besides Mp3's is beyond me..Yeah I'm looking at u Apple. And as for games I don't want to have to put Cd's in when I play the game. So I get No CD cracks for any games I get which gets rid of the annoyance and any DRM they like to include. Some of this DRM spins the CD for minutes before deciding your OK and some phones home through the internet...Uhhh sorry I think not.
---agissi--- said:
DRM defiantly stops me from buying these lateast drm-botched games. Its something I now I have to look into before buying the game. All these surprises on how you hace access to the physical CD.
lncpapa said:
I'm in the same boat with these two guys - DRM, if I know about it in advance, will prevent me from buying a game. DRM in music is really a non-issue - I don't trust the online stores enough to purchase anything from them. For one, I don't do lossy audio formats - and second, I know it's just a matter of time before they shut down their servers preventing me from playing my old music.I hate having to put a CD/DVD into my drive just to play a game. For these games I'll usually find a No-CD to get around it, but sometimes DRM can get in the way of my trying to get this out of the way ;) With the DRM inclusion being publicly known ahead of time I will NOT be buying Crysis Warhead or FarCry 2. I own enough games that sit up on my shelf an not get played just because I have to break out the disk each time. No more will I throw my money at these developers. The people who pirate the games have a much easier time playing the games I've paid for than I do - just disgusting.
geechiesway said:
I avoid DRM at all cost. When it comes to music I purchase CD's always. Can't beat the best quality and no DRM. When it comes to games I stick to consoles, PC games lately are too much of a headache, gotta upgrade your system, upgrade to Vista, deal with DRM, not worth my time or money.
Badfinger said:
Not affected much either way, I usually buy games 1-2 years after release, and music wise I only buy used off amazon any more, between '87 - '93 I bought over 1000 CDs, I have almost no interest in most new music, but when the itch strikes, used on amazon... same thing for movies, I never buy a new release, I have a redbox .5 mi. from my house for $1.08 a night, or $7.56 for used.Not sure how the rental stores survive with all the overhead and choices these days, let alone the crappy economy I keep hearing about.
viperpfl said:
I avoid games and music that contain DRM. If I don't buy the games I am labeled as a pirate. If I buy the games, my computer is at the mercy of the game company. What would happen if companies like Toyota or GM placed restrictions on there cars? What if you couldn't modify your car using aftermarket parts? What if you weren't allowed to sell your car after a couple of years? People would be up in arms over that but game companies are allowed to get away with there restrictions. We are going down a slippery slope with restrictive DRM. To say your only allowed a certain number of installs is nonsense. If I bought the game legitimately then I should be allowed to install however many times I want on my own computer. Changing the config of your computer like removing the cd rom drive to play the game is down right criminal. It's like inviting a stranger into your house and allowing them to do whatever they want. If I don't buy the game, it's not myself who will lose out, it will be the game company. I will just go around the copyright and buy a used console game or get the game from a friend. If the game company loses money, they have no one to blame but themselves.
mrtraver said:
So far DRM has not actually stopped me from buying a game, but I have regretted it at times and it may stop me in the near future. I have downloaded full games a few times when a demo was not available, but then I buy the game if I enjoy it enough to keep it. Whether or not I buy the game, I always uninstall it and delete the download. When I do buy a game, I always install a no-CD crack so i can keep my discs safely stored away. My 13 year old is not the most careful person with discs, and my 2 year old loves shiny things.Securom screwed up my DVD drives so that autorun doesn't work for anything, and any time I try to install a new game from the disc I get a message that my drive is not a valid win32 application. To install a game with Securom I have to copy the entire contents to the hard drive and run the installation from there. Although it's a temptation to seed the folder to get my drop of blood from the publisher, so far I have not done so.Obviously EA doesn't get it. The few people who will want to install a game on more than 3/5 systems are likely to know how to download a DRM-free version. I myself am getting tired of the hassle DRM games provide, and am considering depriving myself of some upcoming titles like Red Alert 3 and Dead Space. At first I had considered buying them and then installing cracks, or just downloading a full version and keeping the shrinkwrap on my purchase, but EA's arrogance is pissing me off enough that I don't want to give them any of my money no matter how much I enjoy their titles. (For the record, I am not an EA basher. I have several of their games for PC and Xbox and have enjoyed nearly every one of them. I'm not a fanboy, but I have never jumped on the "death to EA because they are too big" bandwagon so popular with the kids these days. It's so gauche.)
hamsteyr said:
Hmm... I admit to getting my games online, thats for one. Doesn't mean that i don't buy original games though. My basic idea is that if i love the game, i buy it.HOWEVER, if the game has a retarded DRM, i don't get it. So far only games like COD4 and Battlefield 2 have passed those criteria, and i don't quite want to go back to the days of me disconnecting my 2nd hard drive, taking out the 2nd Optical drive, trying to hide all the other drives, killing all my software in my pc, and what for? JUST FOR SILLY PRINCE OF PERSIA TWO THRONES to run. In the end the only salvation from that was cracks. I am forever grateful to NoCDs because they take the silly frustrations out of my day. They'll never learn these people. Excellent games sell well regardless. I find COD4 to be one of those, and not Crysis...Anyway i hope FarCry 2 doesn't quite suffer the same irritating fate. I've had enough with DRM. If all games in the future will have it installed, count me out from buying them. Games are supposed to work right out of the box (given you have the right specs). The game shouldn't intrude and ask you to uninstall your other programs just because the devs don't like them.Shame on copy protections. They should find other ways to go around this. Steam's idea of things are great taken out the fact you pretty much need an internet connection 24/7 to play the game.
yukka said:
Every game is cracked within a day of being released anyway. It just punished people that buy the games legitimately.
MetalX said:
Any time a game comes out with DRM, that game company doesn't get my money. I download the torrent. Same with music. They want to put DRM on it, fine. I'll just go get it for free. Maybe the ESA should come stick it to me.[Edited by MetalX on 2008-10-17 23:47:43][Edited by MetalX on 2008-10-17 23:48:06]
captain828 said:
> Is this your case?I loved BioShock, Mass Effect & Stalker Clear Sky, but I would never buy them... the DRM on them is far too annoying.> Have you had good/bad experiences with DRM restrictions as outlined above?Yes; remember StarForce & Ubisoft? I had issues with Splinter Cell Chaos Theory, it couldn't read my DVD! Good thing they released a patch that removed the DRM crap.> How could developers and the music industry create a safer environment to generate sales without punishing the paying consumer? First of all, music with DRM is really pointless; you pay for the track, then it means you can do whatever you want with it, including copying it on several media devices (iPods, other PCs, burning them to an audio CD) or even modifying it for your own pleasure, as long as it remains for your private use.For games, DRM needs to be used, however a new standard must be made, because the current SecurROM iteration is way too intrusive... come on you can't install your game on x number of PCs?! or still need the god damn DVD in the drive to play it?!Steam is a much better option; no DRM and an easy way of DL-ing games + it remembers what games you have purchased so if you uninstall a game and your DVD was lost you can just download the game again. Needless to say, pirating with Steam also exists, so it doesn't remove the problem entirely. Also, you need internet connection only to activate the game once, afterward you can play it in offline mode.
thejedislayer said:
If a game I knew had strict DRM rules on it that prevented me from being able to say reinstall the software at a later time, etc, and imposed strict restrictions on me, then I would not buy it. Then again, if the game itself was good enough to play and I knew that Iíd only play it once for the story, then Iíd consider buying it then.As goes for music that has DRM on it, well, all I can say is to hell with that. I use a music subscription from Rhapsody and when Rhapsody doesnít have the songs I want, then I buy DRM free music from them, or Amazon.
phantasm66 said:
Why buy when you can [url]http://thepiratebay.org/[/url] ?
Auldian said:
DRM hasn't stopped me from buying a title or song.
Kastan said:
Of course it does!!
MetalX said:
[b]Originally posted by phantasm66:[/b][quote]Why buy when you can [url]http://thepiratebay.org/[/url] ?[/quote]Truth.
---agissi--- said:
[b]Originally posted by MetalX:[/b][quote][b]Originally posted by phantasm66:[/b][quote]Why buy when you can [url]http://thepiratebay.org/[/url] ?[/quote]Truth.[/quote]Because if the developers of the games you love dont get any money (sales), they wont keep making games. They'll lose their jobs eventually.
Rick said:
While I don't like it, DRM wouldn't keep me from purchasing something I'd really want.BUT, that isn't really the point. My point at the moment is it doesn't keep me from getting it or sharing it either....
Darth Shiv said:
I was like mrtraver... now I've gone that step further and just don't buy games with DRM. When the workarounds to get a game I paid for to work include no-dvd cracks, then I think that the people pushing that rubbish on us are the crooks. I don't have to buy it. And I won't.
phantasm66 said:
[b]Originally posted by ---agissi---:[/b][quote][b]Originally posted by MetalX:[/b][quote][b]Originally posted by phantasm66:[/b][quote]Why buy when you can [url]http://thepiratebay.org/[/url] ?[/quote]Truth.[/quote]Because if the developers of the games you love dont get any money (sales), they wont keep making games. They'll lose their jobs eventually.[/quote]Stop charging me extortionate prices and adding crap like DRM in to restrict my freedoms and I will pay. Often I do rent movies from Virgin Media's filmflex service rather than download, its not about just being a leech - its about refusing to pay inflated prices for media that has restrictive technology built in. Once there is a fair and reasonable alternative to illegal downloads people will embrace that.
nirkon said:
[b]Originally posted by mrtraver:[/b][quote]So far DRM has not actually stopped me from buying a game, but I have regretted it at times and it may stop me in the near future. I have downloaded full games a few times when a demo was not available, but then I buy the game if I enjoy it enough to keep it. Whether or not I buy the game, I always uninstall it and delete the download. When I do buy a game, I always install a no-CD crack so i can keep my discs safely stored away. My 13 year old is not the most careful person with discs, and my 2 year old loves shiny things.Securom screwed up my DVD drives so that autorun doesn't work for anything, and any time I try to install a new game from the disc I get a message that my drive is not a valid win32 application. To install a game with Securom I have to copy the entire contents to the hard drive and run the installation from there. Although it's a temptation to seed the folder to get my drop of blood from the publisher, so far I have not done so.Obviously EA doesn't get it. The few people who will want to install a game on more than 3/5 systems are likely to know how to download a DRM-free version. I myself am getting tired of the hassle DRM games provide, and am considering depriving myself of some upcoming titles like Red Alert 3 and Dead Space. At first I had considered buying them and then installing cracks, or just downloading a full version and keeping the shrinkwrap on my purchase, but EA's arrogance is pissing me off enough that I don't want to give them any of my money no matter how much I enjoy their titles. (For the record, I am not an EA basher. I have several of their games for PC and Xbox and have enjoyed nearly every one of them. I'm not a fanboy, but I have never jumped on the "death to EA because they are too big" bandwagon so popular with the kids these days. It's so gauche.)[/quote]You are aware that SecuROM will pay you $10,000 if you can prove that securom messed up your dvd drives right? check on their website.edit: or at least they used to offer that... maybe someone proved it...
bun-bun said:
With regards to music I will not buy online for 2 reasons. First quailty, second DRM. Properly ripped, encoded MP3's sound no worse then flac or original CD. However online retailers haven't caught on to this yet. So why would I spend money for something of lesser quality that sounds like crap and I can't easily transfer it between my home stereo and my car stereo? No brainer to me. If Oink was a pay service I would have paid for it. Wouldn't even have hesitated to give them money. Hell I would pay $2.00 a song for a legit service in the form of oink. Make CD's availible in DRM free high qaulity encodes (with options like MP3, FLAC, OGG) for $10-$15 for the entire CD and I am sure you will see a lot of people move to online buying, myself included. For now I buy CD's that I want to support the artist from (and then rip them and transfer the files to my central server and all my mobile devices).Now as far as games go. DRM to a point has a purpose and is acceptable. I feel this line is drawn at a CD-KEY and requiring original CD for authentication. Once a game requires internet access to install and/or multiple activation requirements it has gone well beyond the acceptable line and I refuse to purchase such game. And for you naysayers who say you can just download cracks after that and remove DRM... not true. The game still needs to phone home to complete it's installation process. The only way to truly remove it is to crack the installation process as well and make a new DVD... completely unnaceptable to me. 2K Games is close to remedy'ing there situation with Bioshock but until they offer me replacement disc's without any form of DRM that don't need to phone home, I will never play the game.
darkshadoe said:
Theres an easy way to get them to remove DRM from CD's, games, etc...Quit buying them. Vote with your dollars people. The "I gotta have it NOW" attitude is what these companies count on. Force the companies to lower the prices and remove the DRM by not buying that brand new game until its 6 months old.
Rage_3k_Moiz said:
Of course. I download games that come with DRM and will continue to do so until it is removed.Feel free to complain to your nearest legislator.
9Nails said:
[b]Originally posted by MetalX:[/b][quote][b]Originally posted by phantasm66:[/b][quote]Why buy when you can [url]http://thepiratebay.org/[/url] ?[/quote]Truth.[/quote]When you get a job, work hard and they don't pay your wages, you'll understand.You've seen the credits at the end of games, there's a lot of names listed who had a part in making that game and had to be paid for several years before you enjoyed the game to the end. Some companies list the babies born during that time and have a long section of names! In other words, it effects people, companies, and children when you steal a game. If you enjoyed the game, you should pay them for their hard work.Download the demo, and never steal the full version!Thief's are bad people. Don't be a thief.
mopar man said:
I am in the same exact boat as Rage (In fact, I dunked him earlier, almost caused him to drown) in that I will not buy anything DRM since an untimely incident in which my dad got very angry when he couldn't burn a music video we bought off of iTunes...
mrtraver said:
[b]Originally posted by nirkon:[/b][quote][b]Originally posted by mrtraver:[/b][quote]So far DRM has not actually stopped me from buying a game, but I have regretted it at times and it may stop me in the near future. [/quote]You are aware that SecuROM will pay you $10,000 if you can prove that securom messed up your dvd drives right? check on their website.edit: or at least they used to offer that... maybe someone proved it...[/quote]I have heard that, but I read somewhere that you have to take your computer to their headquarters in Russia. Oh, wait, that was Starforce! To bad i have a new PC now, and I have not installed any games with Sucuwrong.
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