After announcing that they'd be shutting off their DRM servers and nuking their customers' music collections, Wal*Mart has changed their mind. Now they've told their customers that they'll be keeping these servers online indefinitely — which means that they'll be paying forever for their mistaken kowtowing to the entertainment industry's DRM mania.
All those companies (cough Amazon cough Apple cough) that say they're only doing DRM for now, until they can convince the stupid entertainment execs to ditch it, heed this lesson: you will spend the rest of your corporate life paying for this mistake, maintaining infrastructure whose sole purpose is to lock your customers into a technology restriction that no one really believes in. Welcome to the infinite cost of doing business with Hollywood.
Based on feedback from our customers, we have decided to maintain our
digital rights management (DRM) servers for the present time. What this
means to you is that our existing service continues and there is no
action required on your part. Our customer service team will continue
to assist with DRM issues for protected windows media audio (WMA) files
purchased from Walmart.com.
While our customer support team is available to assist you with any
issues, we continue to recommend that you back up your songs by burning
them to a recordable audio CD. By backing up your songs, you insure
access to them from any personal computer at any time in the future.
We appreciate your support and patience as we work to provide the best
service possible to you. As we move forward with our 100% MP3 store,
we'll continue to update you with key decisions regarding our service
and your account via email.
Thank you for using Walmart MP3 Music Downloads.
The Walmart Digital Music Team
(Thanks to everyone who suggested this!)