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What Is DRM?

Digital Rights Management, or DRM, is a term that is used when talking about a number of different methods or techniques that are used for limiting the use and transfer of digital content. DRM is employed in various types of media but is most commonly used when dealing with video and music files. There are some camps that contend that the term “DRM” gives a false meaning because it deals with issues on usage of files and not about the rights of the consumer. Because of this, DRM has also come to be known as Digital Restrictions Management.

DRM proponents argue that without an established system in place that will make sure that it will only be paying customers that can gain access to media piracy will become a serious problem that will have a big effect on profits for the producers and distributors of these media. Because of the decline in sales, the input of the creative talent will also be drastically affected.

But civil liberties activists argue that usage of digital technology should not be regulated and that continuing to give producers control over media even after it has been sold will actually hurt creative input while at the same time negatively affecting consumer rights. Majority of media is copyright protected but it still has a fair use clause that means it can be used unhampered in certain cases and situations. All types of DRM technologies at present do not have adequate policies to account for fair use. This has lead civil advocates to charge that DRM limits the legal use of content.

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