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CNET News: New Office Locks Down Documents

Sep 02, 2003, 20:00 (34 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by David Becker)

"As digital media publishers scramble to devise a foolproof method of copy protection, Microsoft is ready to push digital rights management into a whole new arena--your desktop...

"The new rights management tools splinter to some extent the long-standing interoperability of Office formats. Until now, PC users have been able to count on opening and manipulating any document saved in Microsoft Word's '.doc' format or Excel's '.xls' in any compatible program, including older versions of Office and competing packages such as Sun Microsystems' StarOffice and the open-source OpenOffice. But rights-protected documents created in Office 2003 can be manipulated only in Office 2003.

"'There's certainly a lock-in factor,' said Matt Rosoff, an analyst with Directions on Microsoft. 'Microsoft would love people to use Office and only Office. They made very sure that Office has these features that nobody else has...'"

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