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Understanding DRM and why it doesn't work

Forums - PC Discussion - Understanding DRM and why it doesn't work

I have noticed a lot of confusion on this forum about what exactly DRM is and why it is so bad.

 

First of all DRM stands for Digital Rights Management, it's pretty much anything that controls your rights to a digital file.  When used in the context of video games, DRM often limits the amount of times you can install a file or the number of places you can install a file.  It is not some sort of bug or something that screws up your computer, it is an intentionally put in device to limit our rights to the game we purchased.

 

The main intention game devlopers and publishers have had in putting in DRM was some crazy guys idea to prevent piracy.  The thing they forgot to take into account was the fact that pirates are pirates and there was copy protection before, and if you increase it they will still find ways to get around it.

 

The only thing DRM accomplishes is hurting the actual paying customers.  Paying customers are the only ones truly affected, because a pirate is a pirate no matter what. 

It's the same as anti-gun laws, someone who was planning on doing a shooting isn't going to go and say "Oh darn! Those tricky feds made that law that says I can't bring a gun into that building and shoot that person, I guess I'll have to just not do it then!"  Hell no! In fact did you know that every school shooting that has happened in the United States has happened in a school where bringing guns into the building was illegal?

 

So the problem pretty much is, DRM doesn't stop people who used to pirate games from pirating them, but it causes a whole bunch of other people who normally buy their games to pirate the game as well, either because they want to stick it to the publisher or they don't want to have to deal with DRM altogether.

 

One of the big problems is the fact that many publishers have come to the conclusion that if their game sells poorly on the PC the one and only reason is piracy.  If you want a game to sell well on the PC.  Just make a high quality game.  If it's good and the gamers respect you, they will buy your game.  Yes people are going to pirate your game, but no matter what you do they always will.  So developers and publishers, just respect your customers and they will respect you.

 

Well I hope that clears some things up for people that didn't understand before, and hopefully now you will see why publishers and developers have made a huge mistake in adopting DRM as an anti-piracy measure.



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"First of all DRM stands for Digital Rights Management, it's pretty much anything that controls your rights to a digital file. When used in the context of video games, DRM often limits the amount of times you can install a file or the number of places you can install a file. It is not some sort of bug or something that screws up your computer, it is an intentionally put in device to limit our rights to the game we purchased."

If anyone has ever read the EULA or any game license since the beginning of game licsences this is standard. Games have always insisted on a single install at any one time. Though it's been loose about being installed on another machine, providing it was uninstalled on a prior machine. This move to impliment heavier DRM is only to enforce this ignored licsence. btw DRM sucks.



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.jayderyu said:
"First of all DRM stands for Digital Rights Management, it's pretty much anything that controls your rights to a digital file. When used in the context of video games, DRM often limits the amount of times you can install a file or the number of places you can install a file. It is not some sort of bug or something that screws up your computer, it is an intentionally put in device to limit our rights to the game we purchased."

If anyone has ever read the EULA or any game license since the beginning of game licsences this is standard. Games have always insisted on a single install at any one time. Though it's been loose about being installed on another machine, providing it was uninstalled on a prior machine. This move to impliment heavier DRM is only to enforce this ignored licsence. btw DRM sucks.

 

DRM does suck, thats what the point of my thread was.  And yeah they've always wanted only one install but this actually enforces it and also it limits reinstalls (WTF!?)



PC Gamer

single installs make sense for multiplayer games BUT it doesnt make much sense for a single player game. If a game has both single and multiplayer gaming in it make it so you have to login to an account to use online functions like Steam does. You can play all off-line single player titles off-line but no multi-player online games.



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Also, DRM cannot be uninstalled even after you uninstall the actually game.
DRM works similar to trojan/virus that it's very well hidden and you cannot clean it off unless you know your way around (which the majority don't).

It's known to mess up people's computer, also and basically forcing a clean install to make things working "properly" again.

DRM intention is to limit customers. However, DRM itself could be used by hackers as trojan and pretty much take over your computer and turn it into spam machines. Remember the Sony DRM that installs shit into your computer? From music CD?



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A few years ago, I had DRM on my hard drive that didn't allow my DVD burner to read F.E.A.R's disks and I had to use the regular DVD drive to do it.

At first I had no idea what it was and thought that the burner was dying on me, but now I would have to say it was some form or DRM restricting it since I reinstalled the game last year on the same hard drive (though it had been reformatted at least once since then) with the exact same DVD burner and it worked.

It makes me shutter when I think about how annoying this could be with other games.



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Very nice explanation and a post overall except for the part with the no-gun laws. If those laws existed people would be much more hard pressed to get their hands on the gun in the first place to go shoot people with. Not really a great analogy when put up against DRM.



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PC is moving online - 70% of it's revenue was already through online (traditional retail was only 30%), so it has to have DRM for protection.



vlad321 said:
Very nice explanation and a post overall except for the part with the no-gun laws. If those laws existed people would be much more hard pressed to get their hands on the gun in the first place to go shoot people with. Not really a great analogy when put up against DRM.

 

I know I was just using it as an analogy as to how just like piracy protection it doesn't stop it from happening.  I was just using it in general and not some technical thing, I dunno.



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