You need to think about things from the perspective of any
"Your computer ought to be something that you [have to] pay to use by the month."
If you don't pay your phone bill or your cable bill monthly,
they cut you off. If you don't pay your computer bill monthly,
Microsoft cuts you off. Your computer stops working.
The scenario can even get more draconian. Company-X produces a better media mousetrap. Microsoft wants to buy it. Company-X declines. Microsoft decides that the presence of Company-X's software constitutes a possible infringement upon their digital rights and every Windows machine in the world promptly deletes it. By the time Company-X appeals, they're out of money and gone.
The software environment on your computer, therefore, is something that you do not own,
any more than you own the programs played on your television set. You own the hardware, but you don't own what runs on it. You own the work-products (documents and such) but they are subject to "inspection" at any time "to make sure they don't violate any digital rights."
You just invited Big Brother in to live at your home and you pay the rent and the light-bill.
No, I am not
No, I am not
engaging in a pleasant bit of hyperbole.
This is something that has been openly discussed for some time, and the Mellinium Digital Copyright Act specifically
allows a copyright-holder to be quite invasive in enforcing
their rights (as they deem them to be), without a judge-and-jury, without a search warrant, without anything.
You don't like
that? Well, hey, I didn't expect it. But let's do the math: I
have bezillions of dollars and two dozen key members of Congress on my payroll, and you
don't. Money talks, and nobody's listening to you.
(One reason why not is that your computer mysteriously stopped working.)
The fly in the ointment, of course, is Linux. There is no way to "buy it," and it runs way-y-y
too many servers now (including Google!) to stamp it out.
It would "obviously" be the worst possible scenario for this sort of evil-utopian world vision to come about. These are
the same people who opposed, at one time: playing songs on the radio; the cassette tape; the digital DAT tape; the CD burner; sound files. The iPod would never
have been invented. One-hour photo development shops would still be a thriving business.
In a word, it would shut-down technical innovation at approximately the 1960's level... and be perfectly content so to do. (Okay, a wee
bit of hyperbole now...
But shenanigans like these need to be exposed. This doesn't
reflect the attitude that the common-man has about "a piece of music" or "a television show." The kitchen lights have to be turned on full-bright so that the roach bugs will scatter.