I was tempted to file this under STUPID. It's a tossup. I bought the new Kings Of Leon album today (it rocks) and found that it was encumbered by some very stupid "copy protection" software called Media Max. It's meant to keep those mean old pirates from copying the disc and spreading it around to cheap Kings Of Leon fans on the internets. Of course it doesn't work and just causes people like me a hassle. It's very easy to disable (click here for how), meaning that real pirates who are copying and selling the discs will just disable it. Other people who just want to rip the disc to MP3 to listen to it on their ipod (me) or mythtv home theater (me again) either won't be able to do it or will be subject to an unneeded hassle. When I buy CDs, all I ever do is fire up Exact Audio Copy and rip it to MP3. Then I listen to the MP3s and usually never see the physical disc again. I'm not pirating, not distributing, not doing anything illegal or wrong. But the music industry chooses to subject me to a hassle for absolutely no reason. Like I said, the real pirates are just going to disable the stupid copy protection or more likely use a real CD duplicator that doesn't care about the crappy DRM they used. Some day they'll stop treating their customers like criminals but it's not coming soon enough. I'm tempted to go return the stupid disc now that I have it ripped and buy a tshirt directly from the band to make up the lost money.

I've seriously curtailed my buying of big label CDs in recent years specifically because of their idiocy. I've bought more independent CDs in the last month than I have bought label CDs in a year. I used to buy a CD a week, not any more. Now I buy from guys like Brad who includes MP3s on his discs and wants you to give them out to people because he knows that more listeners == more money. I've also bought CDs from Winston (the site they use let me just buy the MP3s and download them, DRM free), Manda & The Marbles, and Slim. All of those I found because they gave various podcasts the right to play their music. Go find some artists who appreciate their fans and labels that don't thing applying pointless hassles to paying customers.

The dumbest thing about it, I fired up my favorite bittorrent search site and guess what, 2 copies of the new album ready to be downloaded. Idiots.