drm.jpgPlaysForSure must have sounded like such a good idea at the time — one DRM key for all your music purchases. Except that now Microsoft is discontinuing PlaysForSure so all five of you who purchased tunes from the MSN Music store with PlaysForSure DRM are soon going to lose your music.

For now you’ll still be able listen to the tracks, but you’ve got until August 31 to decide which PCs you’re going to authorize. Once Microsoft kills the license servers you’ll never be able to listen to the music elsewhere. That means that when you buy your next PC you can kiss that music goodbye.

Or you could just use any number of audio capture programs to re-record the tracks as DRM-free MP3s and then just trash the PlaysForSure like Microsoft has decided to do.

A copy of the e-mail that went out to MSN Music customers reads:

As of August 31, 2008, we will no longer be able to support the retrieval of license keys for the songs you purchased from MSN Music or the authorization of additional computers. You will need to obtain a license key for each of your songs downloaded from MSN Music on any new computer, and you must do so before August 31, 2008. If you attempt to transfer your songs to additional computers after August 31, 2008, those songs will not successfully play.

So yes, despite the fact that you purchased and own the rights to play the tracks, you won’t be able to listen to them. For a rather humorous read between the lines check out Joe Wilcox’s market-speak translation of the announcement over at Microsoft Watch.

Let this be a lesson to you — and a great counter argument for those that say DRM is only bad for pirates — DRM will always find a way to screw you over, even if it has to commit suicide to do it.

DRM is bad, mkay?

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