Sony: ‘What you don’t know won’t hurt you”

Sony President of Global Digital Business Thomas Hesse dropped the most outrageous statement to date on their DRM nightmare during an NPR interview, in which he stated that “Most people, I think, don’t even know what a rootkit is, so why should they care about it?” Reaction on Digg, Gizmodo, Engadget, and Techdirt. Some day someone will write a marketing case study about what not to do and say when dealing with a customer revolt, and that statement will be its epigraph.

7 Responses to “Sony: ‘What you don’t know won’t hurt you””

  1. Damian Says:

    The ignorance and arrogance of these spokesmen is astounding. They’d do better to shut up: they’re shooting themselves in the foot.

    I’m not an electronics engineer, and consequently I don’t know how audio bugs work, does that mean I wouldn’t mind having one secretly planted in my bedroom? Would Thomas Hesse? Of course noe: if I put a bug in Thomas Hesse’s bedroom, he’d complain.

    I’m not a car mechanic, and I haven’t studied professional level manuals for my car, does that mean I wouldn’t mind dangerous practices on the part of the automative manufacturer? Would Thomas Hesse?

    I’m not a doctor and I don’t know the medical details of what ground glass would do to my insides, does that mean that I wouldn’t mind if a supermarket chain didn’t recall contaminated food? Would Thomas Hesse not mind?

    And what if I didn’t understand *and* didn’t mind about these things: would that make them right? Of course not.

    No! This is not right. If Ford had sold cars with dangerous parts Ford would put out a recall. If Safeway discovered that food it had distributed was contaminated it would ask for people to return the affected food and accept a refund.

    But Sony, this rotten, corrupt, and criminal company, pretends innocence and thereby compounds their original profoundly immoral behavior.

  2. Giorgio Zarrelli Says:

    You know what’s the best? Some of DRM protected CD, don’t work in Windows unless you use their crafted players.
    Then, you boot in Linux (or any Unix) and play as a regular audio CD.
    This is the right meaning of “don’t even know what a rootkit is”, an OS that doesn’t care of DRM and let you listen the music you payed for.

  3. matt Says:

    And the sony products we don’t buy won’t hurt us either…

    “most people don’t know what sarin gas is but i wouldn’t want sony letting it loose in the building”

  4. Noah Callaway Says:

    Sony continues to disgust me at every turn. I can’t believe how they are responding to this. I won’t be buying anything Sony again. It’s rediculous. Way to go, Sony. I hate you.

  5. Jamie Says:

    The issue has a Crooked Timber post now

    mentioning the NPR interview, and asking for comments to come up with the best, most outrageous parallel suggestion, “Most people, I think, don’t even know what a ____________ is, so why should they care about it?”

  6. Justin Rowles Says:

    Sony are simply lying in an attempt to get people to go away.

    According to the FAQ at, “The software does not collect any personal information nor is it designed to be intrusive to your computer system.”

    If there’s any way they can explain how a rootkit - which overrides parts of the Windows OS and stays resident after use, using resource - is not ‘intrusive’ I’d be delighted to hear how they justify the claim.


  7. The Sony Boycott Blog » Blog Archive » Sony BMG: Thinking again about DRM Says:

    […] Talk about a non-statement: Thomas Hesse, of “nobody knows what a rootkit is” fame and President of Sony BMG’s Global Digital Business unit, says that the company is reconsidering how it employs DRM “because of the bad publicity” around its two badly flawed systems. But he says that the company is still committed to blocking copying of its discs because “copyright infringement is a huge issue for the record industry as a whole.” […]

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