xkcd is sometimes really funny. It is also sometimes over my head. But I really like this one. Straightforward, and so very true.
There are things wrong with the state of copyright law today. Technology has changed some of the fundamental ways media and creativity are created and shared. It has outpaced the law, and now the laws mean very different things than they did. Many of the assumptions copyright laws are based on no longer hold true.
Ask Larry Lessig. He has some very interesting things to say on the topic.
The laws are antagonistic to the empowered user, and the user is circumstantially inclined to become a criminal. They are pushed that direction by media rights holders who hold to antiquated practices, demanding that consumers do the same.
Just ask Cory Doctorow. He knows.
My personal philosophy is this: When science and technology advance such to empower the holder, we are obliged to deal with the facts. We can't wish ourselves back, we can't say "I wish we'd never invented the H-Bomb" or, "If only we'd never done any research into cloning" or, in this case, "If only the people couldn't copy music and video". Guess what? They can. And when somebody artificially cripples that ability, people will be upset. I am.
I bought In His Own Voice: Ronald Reagan's Radio Addresses over the summer. I made the mistake of buying and downloading from iTunes, and the files are "protected". I bought it with the express purpose of listening while I was jogging. Then, after purchasing, I realized that I wouldn't be able to listen to it away from my computer because I didn't' have an iPod. I had an MP3 player, but not an iPod.
I bought it. I should be able to listen to it whenever I want, on whatever I want, for whatever reason. But I can't. They cut it off at the knees so I can't run with it.
Needless to say, I'm very glad the G1 will come with a direct link to the DRM-free Amazon store.