Give Me Something To Bitch About

Sorry for the late comic. I was preparing for, then participating in an actual job interview for an actual job. The Experiment isn’t over, just evolving. More on that as things develop.

Re: The background of this comic – I asked Twitter what my background color scheme should be and Josh suggested (rather CHALLENGED) “dopefish3d @hijinksensue no no no, houndstooth, alternating between mauve and periwinkle.” Far be it form me to back down once the gauntlet has been thrown, so there you go. I don’t really like it, but I still win.

I’ve really been relying on the “I would totally buy form iTunes if not for all the DRM sadness” crutch for years. Now I have nothing to justify my thevery.

The iTunes Music Store is a brilliant piece of technology. I know people who aren’t normally susceptible to traditional ads and upsales that MARVEL at how ITMS gets them to fall for “you just bought this song… your playlist would be twice as awesome if you added these other 3 songs… i bet some hot chick would totally do you if you played those 4 songs for her and burned some incense and got all suave talkin’ with lotions and oils and shit… click here to buy some incense…” But is it really “getting you to fall for it” if it is actually helpful and you enjoy the shopping experience? Their marketing genius can’t be denied, but you are welcome to debate the true nature of their intent. Is Apple the next RIAA or are they the harbingers of fair and just digital distribution?

I don’t have these questions about Bit Torrent. It’s like paying cash for RAM in China Town. It’s cheaper than retail, comes in a paper sandwich bag that said “RAMS” in Sharpie marker, and I know before I buy that if anything goes wrong the people that provided the goods would sooner drug me and steal my organs than help me out.

For more DRM comics, click up on THIS!



I keep drawing shirtless old men.

The fact that WalMart is shitting shutting down the DRM servers that allow customer who have purchased music from them to actually listen to said music is a mostly a non-issue for me. If you looked at all of your choices for online music purchasing and chose the place that gives you a case of Coors and a 30 lb bag of cat food with every oil change, then your probably deserve whatever you get.

I was forced for the first time to pay for DRM’d music when, in order to purchase presale tickets to a Ben Folds concert, I was required to buy his new album through the iTunes store. This was a problem for me on so many levels. Ben is my favorite performing artist of any medium. His music has had a greater impact on my life than I can explain in words and I want to thank and support him for that. That’s why I’ve gone to at least 10 Ben Folds shows in the last 8 years. I pay $40 a pop and he gets a healthy chunk of that. I buy $25 teeshirts and he gets nearly all of that. TicketBastard forced me to pay $13 for a group of crippled files, of which Ben probably gets $.05 per track (if that). His label, Sony, gets a fairly even split with Apple. So now I have to burn those broken files to a disk, re-rip them in iTunes and replace them in my library. It’s not hard. It’s just a hassle, and it certainly doesn’t support the artists, which is the only reason I would ever BUY music in the first place.

I enjoyed Ephram and Paw. I might bring them back in the future. Maybe they can tangle with Pete.

(Thanks to FB, Joe Conroy, for inadvertently giving me the punch line for this comic.)

Spore DRaMa

Turns out gamers don’t like it when games, like Spore, give their computers digital herpes. I know a big part of the overwhelmingly negative reviews on Amazon are driven by “metooism” amoung young gamers that just want something to bitch about, but haven’t publishers already learned their lesson about DRM? The inevitable negative feedback will certainly harm sales more than piracy. At one point Amazon deleted all the reviews, then restored them. Undaunted, EA plans to continue their “we hate our customers” strategy well into the future.

If you are new to HijiNKS Ensue, you might not know about the HE Podcast. Check it out. In the most recent episode (Episode 28 which is probably not uploaded as of this writing but will be shortly) you can learn Josh’s thoughts on Spore’s DRM, find out what the HE crew thought of “Fringe,” learn exactly how hard Eli’s parents party and oh so very VERY much more.

If you are subscribed to the Podcast RSS feed or the Main RSS feed, please update your RSS readers. I moved them over to the Google side of Feedburner to give me more control over them. The updated links are in the sidebar.

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NBC Makes Excellent Business Decisions

Remember Scrooge McDuck’s money bin? It housed not only the whole of his vast riches but also his “Number One Dime.” I imagine Jeff Zucker, President of NBC, has a similar structure for housing NBC’s wealth. I also imagine (nay, assume) that Mr. Zucker backstrokes through gold ingots and bank notes alike, occasionally diving only to resurface and spew priceless coins from his blow hole.

The only reason I can come up with for NBC’s decision to drop iTunes as a distributor for it’s television properties is that the Money Bin in question must be full.

“We simply can’t fit any more money in this fantastic chamber! One more dollar and I won’t be able to use the diamond encrusted high dive! What good is all of this money if I can’t swim through it? What other uses could I possibly find for it? I know I can have sex on it, or WITH it, but that’s not the point. No! Do not empty that wheelbarrow of money in here! Where did that money come from? iTunes sales of popular NBC shows like “The Office” and “Heroes?” Get Steve Jobs on the phone immediately! I’ll put a stop to this!”

The guy talking was Jeff Zucker.

Josh might have been concerned by this news but it turns out that the terms of the deal in no way affect his ability to illegally download NBC shows from BitTorrent. So he’s cool with it.