/ / Articles, News, Podcast

A photo of me from the summer of 2020, taken by Paula Mariel Salischiker for Rolling Stone Argentina. I'm sitting in a red leather armchair, talking with one hand held out. I'm wearing a Pirate Bay tee. The background has been replaced with the destop wallpaper that shipped with Windows XP. Over my left shoulder is a Microsoft Clippy with a yellow speech-bubble. In the bubble is EFF's DRM logo, a monstrous padlock and the letters 'DRM.'

This week on my podcast, I read my Microsoft DRM talk, first delivered 20 years and one day ago in Redmond, Washington. It was a viral hit in the nascent blogosphere and became a defining document in the fight against DRM.

Greetings fellow pirates! Arrrrr!

I’m here today to talk to you about copyright, technology and DRM, I work for the Electronic Frontier Foundation on copyright stuff (mostly), and I live in London. I’m not a lawyer — I’m a kind of mouthpiece/activist type, though occasionally they shave me and stuff me into my Bar Mitzvah suit and send me to a standards body or the UN to stir up trouble. I spend about three weeks a month on the road doing completely weird stuff like going to Microsoft to talk about DRM.

I lead a double life: I’m also a science fiction writer. That means I’ve got a dog in this fight, because I’ve been dreaming of making my living from writing since I was 12 years old. Admittedly, my IP-based biz isn’t as big as yours, but I guarantee you that it’s every bit as important to me as yours is to you.

Here’s what I’m here to convince you of:

1. That DRM systems don’t work

2. That DRM systems are bad for society

3. That DRM systems are bad for business

4. That DRM systems are bad for artists

5. That DRM is a bad business-move for MSFT