'Usability problems' as Cohen predicted...
A recent comparison
between an iTunes-purchased TV episode and a pirated copy showed that legit download services have a long way to go if companies want to keep users from gobbling up pirated wares. Early impressions of the official BitTorrent store
are in, and this system also suffers from a rash of problems
. Unsurprisingly, a lot of the issues are DRM-related, and they were predicted by BitTorrent creator Bram Cohen before the official store launched
. Cohen in December:
"We're rolling out with some content DRM'd, using Windows DRM, at the insistence of our content partners. We're very concerned about the usability problems DRM introduces, and are educating our content partners about the lost commercial opportunity."
That education attempt apparently didn't go so well.Update
: Something not mentioned in the various impression reports we've seen is that the site now offers "free" games
that are really just crippled demo versions provided by TryMedia (they're a division of our friends at Macrovision
), some of which are infected with adware (screenshot
We're not much for predictions, but we're going to go out on a limb here and guess that offering DRM-crippled video and adware soaked games isn't going to be a huge profit maker for Mr. Cohen and company. Users are going to take one look at this mess and head right back to less ethically concerned
(and free) alternatives.