It seems that the new super duper HD-DVD protection has been hacked prior to its release. I wonder how much money went down the drain on this investment? Probably the HD-DVD’s would be way cheaper if the consumer would stop paying money for such intrusive protected media.
On May 22nd, new HD movies will be released featuring AACS version 3 and using a new volume key, however, unfortunately for the AACS LA, the new version has been beaten already! SlySoft’s AnyDVD HD software has been reported to be able to rip early release previews of the Matrix trilogy that use this new AACS version.
It was not long ago that the AACS LA revoked the old key and even tried issuing cease & desist letters to websites, including Google & Digg, to remove the published key. However, that simply resulted in a major backfire. Interestingly, they still plan on clamping down on key distribution, even though this is likely only going to help encourage the spreading of keys all over again!
With hackers being able to break keys before the get put into new HD DVD releases, it is already looking like the AACS revocation system is of limited use. At this stage, AACS is turning out to be aggravation for the AACS LA to have to keep fixing it, inconvenience for the device & software makers who need to issue updates and support its customers when discs don’t play, hassle for the end users who have to put up with this dreaded system and fun & games for the hackers.
Unlike the music industry, where DRM is starting to be dropped by the major label EMI and already by many smaller labels, the movie industry insists that DRM is here to stay. The main difference however is that the movie industry aims to allow their content to interoperable with other DRM devices, such that consumers can legally rip their movies and should not need to rely on removing the DRM protection. On the other hand, they have already caused major compatibility problems by preventing non HDCP compatible digital displays from being able to show protected HD content in high definition. This is claimed to be the main reason why it was so quickly attacked and beaten.
It will be interesting to see how well Blu-ray’s BD+ protection stands up once it is introduced. Its main advantage is software based copy protection, which means that a new copy protection system can be developed should a system in use get beaten, unlike AACS, which relies on a revocation system, which is already showing its weakness.