Watermarked music worse than DRM'd music?

I just posted the article Watermarked music worse than DRM’d music?.

Now that the major record labels have finally decided to drop DRM in at least some way, a new problem consumers potentially face is music companies deciding to watermark their music as…

Read the full article here:  [http://www.cdfreaks.com/news/14117-Watermarked-music-worse-than-DRMd-music.html](http://www.cdfreaks.com/news/14117-Watermarked-music-worse-than-DRMd-music.html)

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Very interesting and valid points brought up in this article. When I first heard of watermarking as a possible replacement for DRM I was all for it. Because it would allow a person who legally purchases software to make multiple backups(which they should legally have the right to do) and protect the artists from piracy of their work. However, most of the points in this article that appear valid against the use of watermarking are probably not. Point 1 against) That encoding personal information into the watermark will encourage hackers to steal watermarked content for identify theft. Solution) The watermark will be encoded/encrypted so as to make any intelligible sense to anyone except the watermark creators. So the first argument against watermarking falls flat on its face. However, the most valid argument against watermarking in my opinion is that there is this: What good would it do??? As the article states, if someone loses their iPOD and someone finds it and uplodas every water marked song to the internet, how can that person be held accountable and how would that help the watermark creators to catch anyone? It wouldn’t. I guess laws will always be broken. Software will always be pirated. Such is the world we live in.

You know, I’ve seen whole different kinds of horrors of music. Songs interrupted by advertisements, DRM, but watermarking! Say some crook steals a watermarked song and puts it on The Pirate Bay. The watermark traces back to the original owner, not the real criminal. So, guess who goes to federal prison?

However, with the right tools, watermarks can be destroyed (with a slight drop in quality). So, music will be free, no doubt about. But! There are some tools to rip up songs from YouTube and make them sound BETTER than iTunes, better than iPod, better than FLAC! They are called KickYouTube and AoA Audio Extractor, and they are the music pirate’s bread and butter. AAE can even do mass extraction jobs to WAVs, with 320 kbps sound, with an enhanced engine option! Imagine. The world would be full of illegal, awesome sounding songs and the RIAA would have a heart attack. I’m personally all for the RIAA’s demise, but what would happen to the record companies? (No!!! Island Records is gone!) There would be no music at all if these tools were mass used. So, keep your watermarks. Encrypt them with 1024-bit encryption methods. Just kill AAE and KickYouTube. They sound good, but are they worth it?