Canon made big news this past week when it started telling customers how to defeat the Digital Rights Management (DRM) in its toner cartridges because of supply chain issues with the chips they normally use to enforce it. That Canon explained how to bypass the DRM when it suited them, and that it didn’t negatively affect the operation of the printers or the customer, made it clear that DRM and the chips that enforce it offer little if any benefit to customers. Instead, DRM is only in place so the vendor can exert remote control over their product after the customer buys it. Computer vendors are marching to the beat of this DRM, and their ultimate goal is to exert the same sort of control printer and smartphone vendors enjoy into laptops and desktops.
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