For the longest time Windows users have been the brunt of many a joke about haw we are so locked in to Microsoft and their deals cut with the entertainment industry. We have to suffer through things like DRM and whatever other draconian measures Microsoft wraps around their software to ward off piracy. Well we are no longer alone as Mac users will soon discover when they start buying new hardware – especially monitor.
It appears that new Apple hardware is shipping out with “HDCP” anti-copying technology that will prevent the showing of some videos on non-compliant monitors. As the team at TUAW point out
In this case, ‘compliant’ means HDMI or recent-vintage DVI, but even monitors or TVs that support HDCP may not properly negotiate with the DisplayPort connector to give iTunes and QuickTime the all-clear signal (if so, quitting and relaunching iTunes once the display is hooked up may clear the playback hold). Equally annoying: HDCP is only supposed to apply to ‘high-value’ digital streams, meaning standard-def purchases and rentals on the iTunes store should be out of scope… but some reports indicate that both the HD and SD instances are flagged, blocking playback on anything but the laptop’s internal display or a straight-thru HDMI connection. Argh!
As Cory Doctorow pointed out on Boing Boing this doesn’t have anything to do with copyright law per se
Best part: the list of “compliant” monitors will change over time: the monitor you buy today can be “revoked” tomorrow and stop working.
Slashdot says that Apple’s added “copyright protection” to its video. But copyright law isn’t violated when you watch a movie on an “unapproved” monitor. This isn’t about enforcing copyright law, it’s about giving a small handful of movie companies a veto over hardware designs.
Sorry but you get no sympathy from me on this and the next time you start making fun of Windows users I’ll just point you to this post and suggest you STFU.