The lunacy of DRM at 37,000 feet

I do a lot of air travel, and much of it is cross-country. Flights in excess of three hours can really be a drain on energy and productivity if not managed correctly. My usual routine is to break up a lengthy flight into time chunks with some time devoted to work, some for reading, and some for entertainment. My plan today, cruising across the country from Orange County, CA to the Atlanta airport, was to filter through some light reading, spend some productive time on work related things, and mix in some music that I download onto my laptop via the Yahoo!Jukebox service. Today, however, the music part was not meant to be. Instead of firing up a random playlist, I got the following message:

Well, I’m unable to connect to the internet while in the air, so I can’t access music that I’m paying for? I know that the Digital Rights Management (DRM) regime was designed to protect the creative rights (and profits) of artists, but what use is music that I’ve subscribed to, but cannot listen without logging in? Yes, I know that the subscription model requires a routine ‘check in’ with servers to make sure that I’m not ‘stealing’ music. I do, regularly, log Yahoo!Jukebox onto the Yahoo!Music website to check in. I also know that Jukebox was logged in last night. Despite being logged in, this security upgrade was overlooked! This is not the end of the world, but it is pretty frustrating. Now that “His Steveness’ has weighed in on the subject, there may be hope that the music industry will agree to some sort of protective scheme that doesn’t break when you’re cruising at 37,000 feet!

%d bloggers like this: