Bob Zitter, Chief Technology Officer of Home Box Office, wants to do away with DRM — the term, not the concept. Addressing the NCTA (a cable programming trade group), Zitter proposed changing the terminology. Here’s an excerpt from coverage at Boradcasting Cable:
Digital rights management (DRM) is the wrong term for technology that secures programmers’ content as it moves to new digital platforms … since it emphasized restrictions instead of opportunities.
Zitter suggested that “DCE,” or Digital Consumer Enablement, would more accurately describe technology that allows consumers “to use content in ways they haven’t before,”
NCTA: HBO’s Zitter Says DRM Is Misnomer – 5/9/2007 12:04:00 PM – Broadcasting & Cable
Okay, more accurately describe technology… Interestingly enough, Zitter chose to exercise both sides of his mouth; speaking with the reporter after his address, Zitter added that HBO was ready to provide HD content but was loath to do so until they could ensure that consumers could not “use it in ways they haven’t before” — by shutting down the analog component outputs on most cable boxes:
Theoretically, says Zitter, those analog outputs could be disabled, forcing consumers to use a secure digital connection to watch HD content. But current FCC rules don’t give HBO or cable operators that power, in order to protect consumers who bought early HDTV sets that don’t support digital copy protection. “They say we can’t turn off the analog output,” Zitter notes.
Isn’t it time that the word police cracked down on such blatant abuse of the language?