Friday, January 11, 2002

Conflicted interests Now that @Home is no more, AT&T provides both internet service provision and pipes, resulting in shoddy service and forcing customers to use their products, even if those products are inferior. Similarly, companies that own content and distribution equipment (Sony, AOL) are conflicted over DRM. The content arm wants the ideas locked up right, while the distribution arm recognizes this will make their products fail in the market. Philips, who makes CD players but doesn't own movie studios, acts rationally and defends its own self interests by arguing against DRM and working to commoditize the information goods complementary to its hardware. The market itself will not hesitate in rejecting DRM.

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