Why yes, it can be says this nifty article from mindjack. It reiterates the same things that people like Eric Flint have been saying all along. Digital piracy promotes word of mouth and eventually makes the product even more successful than it would have been otherwise. He uses Battlestar Galactica and Dr. Who as his examples.

He also throws together an different way of advertising that would allow pirated (or freely released on the i-net) shows to still have advertising and still make the producers money.

I doubt the TV industry and content producers are going to be impressed right away with the article. It’s more likely that they’ll be dragged kicking and screaming while destroying tons of consumer protections until they eventually capitulate and participate in new forms of distribution or die off slowly.

It looks like I’m going to have yet another problem once the PS3 comes out very similar to the problem I had with the PS2. I’m cheap. I scrounge up parts and hack together interfaces between inexpensive parts for my entertainment center. Back when I first bought the PS2, I only had a 20 inch standard TV with no composite inputs. Only a single Coax jack. I used an old VCR as an interface converter to link the two together. This worked great for games, but it rendered utterly unusable for playing DVDs due to the MPAA’s demanded Macromedia copy protection. I limped along for awhile using my wife’s computer to play DVDs (which was unstable and overheated, skipped, etc.) until finally I just gave up and bought a TV card for my computer and used the PS2 through that to watch DVDs. (Coincidentally, one could also record dvds through that system. So much for macromedia being decent copy protection. All it was is a huge inconvenience for the consumer.)

The PS3 has HDMI ports on it. I have a DVI tv now. HDMI is technically the same in signaling as DVI, but the HDMI standard requires HDCP copy protection while it is optional in DVI. I can get an adapter for HDMI to DVI, but I believe my DVI monitor lacks this copy protection. Some sites have said that it will not be used for Games and Film, but I believe otherwise. I’m pretty sure that BD-Rom movies will require HDCP copy protection to be shown. It’s likely they may even require it of standard DVD-Rom movies. This means I’m right back where I was last generation. Because of MPAA mandated copy protection, I can no longer get full use out of my hardware. The sad thing is, they’re hurting themselves 2 separate ways here (Customer loyalty and word of mouth sales) without even dealing with the style of piracy that actually takes money from their pockets (chinese pirated copies that are sold on the street and on ebay.) I don’t as of yet see a way to view movies on my LCD screen in full resolution. I guess that will mean I’ll be less likely to buy sony’s little Bluray disc movies as they will not provide a quality boost over DVDs if I can’t view them on my HD Lcd screen.