Friday, November 11, 2005

The contract you sign when you insert a SONY CD in your PC and click on 'agree'

The "EULA" is a legally binding contract. You sign it when you click on "agree" when installing software, or after you inser a SONY CD into your PC or Mac. SONY's EULA is 3000 words of unreadable legalese. The EFF has helfpully translated it:
EFF: DeepLinks

...# You must install any and all updates, or else lose the music on your computer. The EULA immediately terminates if you fail to install any update. No more holding out on those hobble-ware downgrades masquerading as updates.

# Sony-BMG can install and use backdoors in the copy protection software or media player to 'enforce their rights' against you, at any time, without notice. And Sony-BMG disclaims any liability if this 'self help' crashes your computer, exposes you to security risks, or any other harm.

# The EULA says Sony-BMG will never be liable to you for more than $5.00. That's right, no matter what happens, you can't even get back what you paid for the CD.

# If you file for bankruptcy, you have to delete all the music on your computer. Seriously.
SONY is now best known as the company that installs software on PCs and Macs that covertly breaks the operating system. It is now the funnel for some nasty viruses and worms.

I'm ready to start funding Russian hackers who's job it is to crack SONY's DRM and pillage their music. I wouldn't actually use the music (that's illegal), I'd just send them charitable donations. After all, they are doing yeoman's work.

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