Professor Felten has a reasonable write up. Cory’s class blog was one of those sites receiving a demand letter. I thought AACS was so technically superior that the licensing authority could cope by issuing key revocations? Perhaps I have misunderstood the material I’ve read on the subject and the 128-bit integer in question is not one of the many keys in the system that can be revoked. Or if it is, maybe it just isn’t practical to do so. I rather suspect that latter.
It has been several months since this particular cat escape the proverbial bag. This seems like a belated reaction, as ill advised as it is. I think Professor Felten is right, though, that once they started, they couldn’t very well stop without looking foolish. More foolish. I also hope that he is right and that this key reaches the same status as deCSS and moots the current generation of video DRM.
I was glad to see Felten also mention what I think is the greatest real barrier, currently, to widespread sharing of high definition video online. The god awful size. Since I suspect most commercial pirates are interested in selling physical media, that particular hurdle would seem to me to be only effective for personal sharing. Like DRM advocates get any of this and if they do, it just reinforces my view that DRM is about suppressing innovation, not preventing any real threat of piracy.