Shift-key Lawsuit

Imagine, for a moment, that you’re a software company. Imagine that you’ve come up with an “unbreakable” Digital Rights Management (read: copy-protection) system for CDs, to prevent people from ripping them. And imagine that you’ve licensed this system to BMG, which has just released the first CD with your copy-protection system.

Now imagine that your high-tech, unbreakable, multi-million dollar copy protection system can be bypassed by the incredibly high-tech method of holding down the Shift key on the keyboard.

Now, since the word has gotten around, your stock has fallen 20% and nobody wants to license your system again. What do you do?

Do you offer an apology to BMG? Do you suck it up, admit you blew it and head back to the drawing board? Slap yourself on the forehead saying “Duh!”? Maybe even come to the realization that it doesn’t matter how good your copy-protection system is, someone will break it, and give up? (We can only dream…)

Nope, if your name is SunnComm, you sue the student who revealed the work-around for “maligning the company’s reputation”.

Welcome to the new world order.

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