A cheap source of fun for the economically-minded gamer, or a knife through the profits of the industry?
Remember SOPA? Sorry if i've brought up any purposefully-repressed memories. Fortunately, the world saw some kind of sense (or more likely certain members of congress saw that popular opinion was so against the acts that there was little money to be made from them), and it was put to bed. But it seems corporations' war against people sharing stuff has merely swapped battlegrounds, and it is now the games industry whose freedom is potentially to be restricted.
A quick look over to IGN today and any casual browser of the internet will be beset by rumours that the next generation of consoles, most specifically the Xbox 720, could introduce a feature which locks games to a single owner. The upshot of this is that we will no longer be able to buy pre-owned games, or lend games to a friend.
I suppose the ideology behind this is sound enough. You want a game, you pay for the game, and the people who made the game get the money, thus allowing them to make more games and continue the industries happy cycle. However, in order for games to be sold, they need retailers. And figures show that the most popular game retailer over here in the UK, the imaginitively titled 'GAME', makes more money from pre-owned game sales than it does from original sales. And even then, GAME and its rivals are struggling. Many GAME shops have had to be closed in the last year, due to sales being stolen from them by cheaper online services like Amazon. If we cut away the majority of these stores' income, then games won't have a place to be sold, and no matter what ideology you use, that will never be a good thing for the industry.