It's the kind of thing you think you'll only do a few times. It's only harmless you say. You hear the horror stories, but you think that it won't happen to you. And then it does. You're at a party. Your party in fact. And it all goes horribly wrong. And you're left feeling a bit like you've been done.

Yes, that’s right. You tried to play a legally downloaded track, and it wouldn't play.

You think DRM (digital rights management) is ok. That you can deal with it, that it's not really all that bad. You buy a few songs from IMS (iTunes Music Store). Some especially for the party in fact, including a kick ass U2 Vertigo Remix by Jacknife Lee that was going to be a headline track.

You see this is why DRM is bad. In that it's not management at all, it's restriction. Yeah the artist gets their cut, but the record company gets an even bigger cut. The consumer however gets shafted. As I have said before, what you are paying for is essentially the right to have someone else dictate what you are allowed to do with you music.

The difference is, previously it was only a legal statement, that you couldn't make a copy of the music, etc etc, with some sort of fair rights assumed. Now that are trying to enforce it with technology.

See when we tried to play the track on the night, it needed an internet connection to authorise the computer. Now this is what I call untenable. A situation where I have paid for music, but suddenly at 1am I need an internet connection to listen to it simply is not a sustainable business model.

Which is why I wont feel bad, stripping the DRM off in future on music I have legally bought. And why right now I don't feel all that bad downloading albums off the net. Largely because the current music model just isn't working. I buy CDs. I'm probably buying less CDs I don’t wont than I used to, but I still buy CDs. I don't download TV or movies, because between Sky, DVDs and the cinema I have something that gives me what I want.

Having someone else tell me what I can do with my music and how I can listen to it, and not getting the headline track played at my party, isn't.

I relasise this is a long and rambeling post, and could largely be written well as opposed to how its written. The take home message is this:

DRM is bad. There a lot of people trying to sell the concept to you. They're lying. It's still bad.

So I was in Amsterdam (city of "Oh I'm so going to get run over by something") last two days. My hotel runs out of rooms, so gives me a suite. Now this is all good and well but my overriding thought was

I'm single, what a waste.

Suites in hotels can be pretty bling. I had a balcony overlooking the a canal, three rooms. Two TVs. A bed that screamed "hotel sex".

Many years back I got a suite on my first stay in Liverpool too. Jacuzzi bath, strawberries and chocolates dusted with icing super on a silver tray on the desk, great view, etc etc. I was also single then. It also went to waste.

This is a room you want to land when you have a lady. However when I'm dating Jose and in Liverpool, I get the Holiday Inn Express. Nice, but a vending machine for snacks is not icing sugar dusted chocolates and strawberries. It is not a bigger than king size bed. It is not jacuzzi bath.

My other overriding thought was, "Fuck me, It's bigger than my flat".

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