The Mac Observer

Skip navigational links

You're viewing an article in TMO's historic archive vault. Here, we've preserved the comments and how the site looked along with the article. Use this link to view the article on our current site:
Amendment May Protect DRM in France

Amendment May Protect DRM in France

by , 4:05 PM EDT, May 9th, 2006

The French Senate is considering an amendment that would offer protection for proprietary Digital Rights Management (DRM) formats as a part of the controversial bill designed to open those same formats to competitors. The bill passed the French Lower House earlier this year, and includes language that requires companies to share their DRM technology with competitors. As it stands, Apple, Sony, Microsoft, and any other company that wants to sell digital music online would have to share their copy protection schemes so that every music download can play on any device.

According to Forbes, the proposed amendment adds a stipulation to the bill that allows companies to protect their DRM technologies as long as the digital content copyright holders and the distributors have agreed on a copy protection scheme. In the case of the iTunes Music Store (iTMS), it means that as long as Apple and the music labels agree on FairPlay as their DRM scheme of choice, competing music download services won't be granted access to the technology.

Valerie Alumage, an online copyright specialist with Paris law firm Dubarry Le Douarin Veil, commented "As long as Apple can show that the restrictions conform to the wishes of copyright holders, there would be no case to answer."

The same holds true for Sony, Microsoft, and every other digital content download service. As long as the companies can show that they have obtained the authorization of the copyright holders, they can refuse to share their DRM technology.

The proposed amendment essentially nullifies the original intent of the law, which is to allow for interoperability between all music devices and services. Opponents to the bill, including Apple Computer, feel that it will erode protection for digital recordings because it will become even easier for users to steal music and movies.

Adding the amendment may very well be an attempt on the part of the French government to avoid losing legal music download services in their country. In leu of opening up their DRM technologies to competitors, legitimate music providers are likely to stop selling their products in France.

Although Apple and other companies have been lobbying intensively to protect their copy protection schemes, it's still unclear if the French Upper House will add the amendment to the bill.

Recent TMO Headlines - Updated August 30th

Tue, 3:53 PM
Sonos's Future: Opening Up Control to Alexa and Third-Party Apps
Tue, 2:06 PM
9 Great New 'Little' iOS 10 Features
Tue, 2:06 PM
TMO Daily Observations 2016-08-30: Apple's EU Tax Bill, September 7 Media Event
Tue, 12:37 PM
EU Says Apple Owes €13B in Back Taxes, and the Fight is On
Mon, 9:03 PM
Apple Music's Carpool Karaoke Will Feature Broader Range of Celebrities
Mon, 7:54 PM
MOS Pack Backpack Charges Multiple Devices with One Plug
Mon, 5:45 PM
Blood in the Macintosh Water: Apple's Competitors Now Sense Weakness
Mon, 5:29 PM
FresheTech Splash Tunes Bluetooth Shower Speaker: $19.99
Mon, 5:15 PM
Apple Might Destroy the EU
Mon, 3:49 PM
Fitbit Aims at Apple Watch Crowd with Charge 2, Flex 2 Fitness Trackers
Mon, 3:47 PM
TMO Background Mode: Interview with Omni Group Software Engineer Liz Marley
Mon, 1:31 PM
Apple Media Event Officially Set for Sept 7
  • __________
  • Buy Stuff, Support TMO!
  • Podcast: Mac Geek Gab
  • Podcast: Apple Weekly Report
  • TMO on Twitter!