Louis CK to offer HBO show as DRM-free download, chip away at cable content deals

With certain exceptions, HBO has developed a reputation for being protective of where and how its content goes digital. That makes Louis CK's plans for a 2013 comedy special a slight jolt to the system, even though it's not his first digital release linked to the channel. While HBO will get a first crack at airing the show, which will be recorded during Louis' ongoing tour, the comedian now plans to post the production online a few months afterwards using the same successful formula that has become his calling card: $5, no DRM and no region restrictions. The offering doesn't overhaul the industry, but it undoubtedly wrests control from the network as soon as the download link goes live. Think of Louis as making a small crack in cable TV's content wall.