<blockquote>Microsoft can't detect any copyrights attached to media being shared, so a universal DRM wrapper is put in place. Copyrighted content stays protected, while everything else suffers, simply because it's better to stay safe than to feel sorry later.</blockquote>
Nope. I ain't buying that for a second.
Microsoft absolutely can detect if something on the Zune is copyrighted or not by whether or not the song has DRM enabled on it. If it doesn't, it's nowhere near proper to assume that all content is copyrighted.
A popular example. I'm a musician and I store all my own stuff on my Zune. I want to send it to people on their Zune. Microsoft assumes that even though the file is in a non-DRM file format (say an MP3) that it deserves DRM on it because it's copyrighted, never once asking who the copyright holder actually is.
Here's how MS should've done it.
1. Any file that has DRM gets the 3 day / 3 play limit.
2. If it doesn't have DRM, no limit to days or plays.
3. If someone shares a copyrighted song, so what? If their argument is that providing the sharing capability opens them up to lawsuits, they'd better drop networking from Windows because that can do a whole lot more to hurt copyright holders.
It's stupid logic followed up by succumbing to the interests of Hollywood and their ilk over that of the consumer.
I'm not a typical anti-DRM zealot. I believe it was Darius who once said that DRM will not make or break a device because it's on every player and here to stay at least in the short term. That's true. But a DRM that's overly restrictive on content that I may actually own the rights to is not right either.
Hell, if you're that worried about sharing being a copyright problem, don't even include it.
This was one of those things that the Zune got wrong. So much potential crippled by so much design-by-committee.