Saturday, February 18, 2006

Your Senator Does Not Need a Free iPod

When I first heard about this, I thought it was a joke. Now I have confirmed that the Intellectual Property Action Committee ("IPac")is raising money to give video iPods to all members of the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation.

IPAC feels that these senators need a first-hand experience to better understand the issues of digital rights management (drm). The iPods will come pre-loaded with "examples of the cultural richness made possible by sharing and collaboration - public domain content, Creative Commons content, and audio messages about the importance of balanced copyright policy. It will be engraved with the words "listen to the people." And it will arrive at each Senator's campaign office with a letter of explanation and a list of all the people who helped pay for it."

I predict a few things will happen with these iPods:

  • Hopefully at least some of the senators will say "no thank you"
  • Many of them will be given away to children or granchildren, unopened
  • Pretty much all of the pre-loaded content will be deleted without ever being listened to - assuming the senators can figure out how

Regardless of what happens to these devices, it's absurd to think it will have any impact on the drm issue.

One interesting note: this appears to be a non-partisan issue. The list of senators for whom IPAC has purchased iPods so far is split pretty evenly between red and blue. I'm hoping that at least Barbara Boxer and John Kerry will fall into my "no thank you" category, though I doubt it.

2 Comments:

Blogger The Continental Op said...

If I thought the Senators would listen to the specially recorded message from Larry Lessig, I might have a more favorable opinion of this idea. But, I'm inclined to agree with you that it is, at best, a total waste of time and money.

8:40 PM  
Blogger Andreya said...

Hi Nice Blog .If you fast forward through your playlist, Ipod batteries will need to fill its cache more frequently, thus accessing the hard drive more often and using more power. This will decrease overall battery life.

2:59 AM  

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