Robert Heverly has been blogging up a storm on Displacement of Concepts recently and he has several good posts on Cory Doctorow's recent speech at Microsoft on DRM including, I wish I had said that and Still More on Cory's Talk. In a slightly longer post, Heverly disagrees (Not Wanting to Bully, but Not Having That Choice) with a posting by Microsoft evangelical blogger Robert Scoble defending MS's use of DRM (Cory wants Microsoft to be a bully with the RIAA).
Scoble argues that:
Cory wants us to bully the RIAA and push a format that is easily copyable (for music, at least). He says that's exactly what the VCR industry did (yes, he says, they got sued, and won, and were repaid hansomely in the marketplace). Interesting argument. I don't agree with Cory that that'd be a good thing for Microsoft to do. I want to see us avoid the courtroom if at all possible and avoid situations where we're bullying anyone.
But Scoble's take is just plain wrong. Microsoft, by including DRM in its technology and not providing the option to operate without it, is bullying consumers. Even in Scoble's own framework, it's not really a "bully or not bully" choice; it's a "who to bully" choice. Put (hopefully) a bit more articulately, it's a question of where Microsoft's own interests lie, and it seems in the eyes of most people, that they lie with the consumers (remember, the customer is always right). [italics in original]