Gremlin sez, "Sonos recently pushed an update to their once stellar music system which disabled windows DRM. They decided that it was unnecessary to continue to support this feature moving forward. Unfortunately they also pushed this update without warning to many customers, and they are offering no way for those customers to roll back to the previous version. Their answer to those customers effected is that they've made the decision for us. Many customers have been complaining, but it sets a dangerous precedent for them to be able to remove features at will. Today it's a lightly used DRM system (mostly it effects people using Zune Pass at this point) tomorrow maybe it'll be Sirius Satellite, spotify, or something else more people use. We've suggested that we'd be fine with them allowing us to roll back and making the decision ourselves to not take future update but they will not allow this to occur."
It's entirely possible that the decision wasn't Sonos's to make. After all, DRM license agreements routinely provide for "revocation" in which a DRM vendor or licensing body reserves the right to order its partners to discontinue the playback of its DRM for some reason or another. Which is one of the great dangers of DRM: you buy a device with six features today, and tomorrow it has five, or four, or three, or none. The negotiations resulting in these confiscations are confidential, conducted between giant corporations without any input from the people who've bought the equipment and the media to play on it.
I wrote a long, open letter to Wired editor Chris Anderson about this in 1994, when he told me that rejecting DRM was "idealistic" and defended taking a "pragmatic stance" when reviewing technology that had DRM in it. But worrying about what happens when your devices are designed to be remotely deactivated without your consent or knowledge is eminently pragmatic and has nothing to do with idealism, as we keep on learning.
Question 3.6 "Sonos will no longer support the Windows Media DRM format"
A Pittsburgh-area man was charged with disorderly conduct after telling Verizon store staff that he was “definitely part of ISIS” and talking about ISIS on the store’s demo handsets. When asked to leave the store, Fleming said “he wouldn’t leave the store and that he was definitely part of ISIS,” the complaint said. He also […]
Last year’s Hello Barbie chatbot toy sent all your kid’s speech to cloud servers operated by Mattel and its tech partner, but only when your kid held down Barbie’s listen button — new chatbot toys like My Friend Cayla and the i-Que Intelligent Robot are in constant listening mode — as is your “OK Google” […]
If you’re one of the 60% of Pebble employees who didn’t get a job offer from Fitbit, the company’s new owner, you’re probably not having a great Christmas season — but that trepedation is shared by 100% of Pebble customers, who’ve just learned (via the fine print on an update on the Pebble Kickstarter page) […]
The Boing Boing Store’s Gift Guide is full of ideas for pretty much anyone in your life like hipster ice cub trays, Xbox controllers, Halo Boards, and even diamond necklaces. As always, all products in the Boing Boing Store come at great discounts, too. Shop by price bucket starting at under $20. Under $20:Bloxx Jumbo Ice Trays […]
Unlike traditional lighters, the SaberLight features an electronic plasma beam that’s both rechargeable and butane-free. This sleek lighter is even approved by TSA, so you’ll never be stuck buying lighters you’ll just have to throw away partially used. For some people, like me, this is a pretty big game-changer. The SaberLight’s beam is actually both hotter and cleaner […]
Holiday shopping is in full swing, and the Striiv Touch is one of the best gift ideas I’ve landed on. Its simple design works for females and males, and its wide range of features makes it suitable for even the non-fitness enthusiasts in your life.Unlike traditional fitness trackers, the Striiv Touch also acts as a smartwatch. It […]