Jon Johansen (pictured) may not look too threatening, but he’s the kind of guy who keeps entertainment-industry execs up at night with the heebie-jeebies. A few years ago, he cracked a DVD-copying code that got him lots of press attention (and even more legal attention); now he’s come up with a program called DoubleTwist, which will allow iTunes-purchased songs to be used on any device, with no DRM restrictions:
As [Johansen and his partner] explain DoubleTwist in a conference room they share with several other companies, he points to a sheet of printer paper tacked on the wall that has a typed quote [Steve] Jobs gave the Wall Street Journal in 2002: “If you legally acquire music, you need to have the right to manage it on all other devices that you own.” As Johansen sees it, Jobs didn’t follow through on this promise, so it’s up to him to fix the system…
“Today’s reality is that there’s this iTunes-iPod ecosystem that excludes everyone else from the market,” says Johansen. “I don’t like closed systems.”
Awwww snap! He did not just pull out the old “too-exclusive ecosystem” smack-down line! We can’t wait to see how Jobs responds to Jonhansen’s ploy (we’re guessing a noogie, followed by 2,000 pages of legal paperwork), but we’re excited by the prospect of a DRM-free world. Do you have any idea how much of a pain in the ass it is to share that New Pornographers iTunes live session?
Unlocking The Hero [Fortune]