If you’ve been keeping track, I’ve had quite a saga of computer purchases, sales, repairs, and replacements over the past six months or so. In the process I managed to use up all of my five allocated computer activations for iTunes, meaning that with my most recent machine I was no longer able to play any purchased iTunes content. I got pretty angry about this, decided DRM is evil all over again, and started re-buying the songs I had from allofmp3.com in a non-DRM format and replacing the ones I had bought from Apple.
Then it occured to me to email iTunes customer support. I laid out my problem in three sentences, and within a day or two my account had been reset and I could once again authorized five computers. How awesome is that?
I’m still replacing iTunes music with allofmp3.com music anyway, as I find it and remember to do so. Its just more convenient to not have to worry about silly DRM restrictions and to be able to occasionally send a song to a friend or whatever. But I’m no longer pissed at Apple. I know their DRM is insidious, because it gets consumers to accept DRM. On the other hand, the reason its so effective is because its such a good compromise, compared to everything else out there, and the way they make it easy to use and generally keep it out of your way does deserve to be commended, even if I still can’t agree with it in principle and try to limit my purchases on iTunes to avoid the lock-in that DRM imposes.