Friday 24 January 2014 by Bradley M. Kuhn
Apparently, the company that makes my hand lotion brand uses coupons.com for its coupons. The only way to print a coupon is to use a proprietary software browser plugin called “couponprinter.exe” (which presumably implements some form of “coupon DRM).
So, as for, I actually have a price, in dollars, that it cost me to avoid proprietary software. Standing up for software freedom cost me $1.50 today. :) I suppose there are some people who would argue in this situation that they have to use proprietary software, but of course I'm not one of them.
The interesting thing is that this program has a OS X and Windows version, but nothing for iOS and Android/Linux. Now, if they had the latter, it'd surely be proprietary software anyway.
That said, coupons.com does have a
send a paper copy to a postal
address option, and I have ordered the coupon to be sent to me. But it
expires 2014-03-31 and I'm out of hand lotion today; thus whether or
not I get to use the coupon before expiration is an open question.
I'm curious to try to order as many copies as possible of this coupon just to see if they implement ARM properly.
ARM is of course not a canonical acronym to mean what I mean here. I mean “Analog Restrictions Management”, as opposed to the DRM (“Digital Restrictions Management”) that I was mentioned above. I doubt ARM will become a standard acronym for this, given the obvious overloading of ARM TLA, which is already quite overloaded.
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