Monday, January 30, 2006

WB Offers Fake P2P

Slashdot posted an article just now about how WB in Germany is going to try offering movies and shows via P2P.

Except they're not.

Real P2P means a few things. 1) It's free, as in "free pizza". WB's won't be. So far, so proper; it's their shows, after all. But WB says the price "will be similar to the cost of a DVD". So they get users to foot the distribution costs, they have no physical media costs, and pocket all of the cost savings. Yeah, right. Not to mention they "get control" of my computer and whatever piece of my upload bandwidth they want? Not on my computer, you don't.

2) It's peers, talking to peers. Get it? The "P" in P2P means "peer"! The article says nothing about being able to go get a movie from a friend, or even seeing what others have. This is not P2P.

3) It's free, as in "freely copyable". WB's? Nope. You may have bought it, but their "security features" won't let you make a copy. Your computer just crashed? So solly, buy it again. Want to put it on your laptop for a business trip? So solly, buy it again. Want to take it to your lake house on vacation? So solly, buy it again.

There are legal problems with P2P, as many folks use it, but there are benefits even within what is (or should be) legal. I'd use something like iTunes or Google Video, perhaps, (if they would offer something I wanted to watch), but if WB offers what they're sending out press releases about ... I'm just speechless.

You have got to be kidding.

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