3. DRM for all!

Trans Pacific Partnership DRM

Now before you think we have issues with artists and companies making a living and protecting their work from piracy, let’s be clear. We don’t, we’re all for it. The thing is, it’s always done in the most ham-fisted, dunderheaded way that actually harms the product for those who legitimately purchased it. Take DRM for example.

As a concept Digital Rights Management is no bad thing. It stops pirates from ripping off creators and enabling them to make enough money via legitimate sales that’ll help them continue making great stuff for us.

Trans Pacific Partnership underwear gnomes
Still a better plan than this

However DRM rarely works as advertised, especially when it comes to video games. For example, in 2013 EA’s Sim City 5 required players to always be connected to the internet, even when playing solo, as this was supposed to allow some MMO style features.

This turned out to just be a DRM feature, that EA then said couldn’t be turned off, even after causing huge problems at launch time, preventing those who had purchased the game legitimately from playing it.  Enterprising hackers and modders later found out that EA was barely using the internet connection and that it could indeed be switched off.

Now under the TPPA those hackers and modders, and anyone who messes with DRM, even to see how it works, could be branded a criminal and prosecuted, even if they’re not making money from it.

Even if you want to use existing software to rip DVD’s or Blu-Rays that you already own for your own use and to clear some shelf space clutter, you could effectively be branded a criminal and open to hefty prosecution.