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The Real Tragedy of Sony’s Rootkit Fiasco: Time to split up

I haven’t seen it pointed out, so I will.

The real tragedy for Sony is that nobody but nobody is talking about using Sony devices to listen to the music they buy. Remember Walkman? Now there was a cool product. No DRM in sight. I have a Sony TV at home, the last of the Trinitrons. No DRM in sight. Sony is at its best when its building cool devices, that don’t restrict the content you play.

As the company slips away into insignifiance we may see the first big company broken on the wheel of DRM. Promoting Howard Stringer was a retrograde step. We knew “synergy” wasn’t working for Sony but for some reason Sony tried again by putting a welshman from the media business in charge. Sony chose the wrong gaijin though.

The rootkit fiasco though is a symptom not a cause of the malaise affecting the company.

I mean this is the same company that refused to ship Fiona Apple’s album for more than two years, even though potential customers were clamouring for it. Two platinum albums. Who cares – we need something that sounds like a single. Zzzzttt. One set of customers boycotting Sony.

Rootkit – there is another customer boycott.

Its time to divest the media business, and Stringer with it. Put the hardware people in charge of their own destinies. Give up on integrated aggravation.

Apple is the exception not the rule.

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Comment Feed

5 Responses

  1. Cory Doctorow’s been harking back to Sony’s glory days, when they were on the consumer’s side, on a relatively regular basis for the past year at http://www.boingboing.net (which you should read if you don’t; it’s a bit shrill at times, and pretty random at others, but it has net-culture gems that are worth the dreck.)

  2. yes cory is fantastic. i actually had to shy off boingboing because it was just too good. its hard enough to track everything i need to, without that incredible cornucopia of the commons to absorb, too.

  3. Nice post. You really have to wonder what’s going on at Sony and how customer-unfriendly they’ve become. Just look at tbe Sony PSP. They are doing all they can to quell user’s homebrew efforts and then they offer media manager software for an extra charge. If they haven’t noticed, Apple offers iTunes for free with the purchase of an iPod. No wonder Apple is kicking their a**.

    You bring up a really good point that maybe they should divest their media assets, because it really is stifling their other businesses…

  4. Actually media should now invest with apple. I belive it was hugh (gapingvoid fame) who first spoke about mircrobrand- and this means that the enduser will drive the media. Ipod vedio now let’s msm to inject User specific msgs into the song/vedio !!

  5. worse than the DRM is the EULA. Sony has the right to take its music back if you file for bankruptcee…. seriously
    https://www.bizatlarge.net/exchweb/bin/redir.asp?URL=http://www.gripe2ed.com/scoop/story/2005/11/10/03956/517



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