Big Content Win

This is pretty technical, but one easy way to understand it is that it means my brother-in-law is right: Selectable output control is going to go away.  Big content is actively looking for ways to close the 'analog' hole.  And based on this piece in Arc Technica, the hole just got smaller:

After almost two years of deliberation, the Federal Communications Commission has granted Hollywood and cable companies permission to shut down analog streams to HDTV equipped home theaters. The geek term for this is "selectable output control" (SOC)—until now forbidden by the FCC. The Motion Picture Association of America requested a waiver on the SOC ban in May of 2008, arguing that without it, Hollywood studios could not securely offer consumers pre-DVD released movies on television.

So, here's the deal:
You don't need a digital HDMI cord in order to get HD quality picture.  You only need the component cord.  The difference in the picture quality ranges from trivial to completely un-noticable (And is largely in the completely un-noticable category until you get to truly immense TV screens - get out the 40 inch screens and into and above the 50s).  So why bother getting an HDMI connection at all.  Well, because big content wants you to.  Why? you say.  Because the digital HDMI cord has built-in copy protection that big content can take advantage of to limit what you can do with the content.

I don't care for this.  I want to get HD content that I can control (make that I want to control all the content I buy).  I want to save it as long as I want to.  I want to have the ability to burn it to disk and play it on any and all of my electronic devices as many times as I desire.  I want to be able edit it; maybe take out the ads or take out one really good joke and send it along to my friends.  Big content either doesn't want that or wants to be paid for it.  I can't say that's wrong.  I can say that I find any win by big content a little disappointing as it lowers my ability to use content as I want to be able to use it.  So, I'm not overly happy with this waiver.

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