On February 1st, 2006 the popular comic series Ctrl+Alt+Del launched the first episode of their new animated series which, judging by the feedback on their forums, became an instant success with most of the existing fan-base although some people were criticising the characters voices - an issue which probably could not have been avoided since longtime readers of the comic already had their own idea of what the characters would sound like.
Besides those obvious issues the readers already anticipated, there was an issue regarding the format in which the first episode was made available to paying customers. A number of fans were complaining about the lack of a down-loadable version of the episode since they were only able to stream it through the web-based player software.
Of course, this method seems safer to the copyright holder, since the media cannot be downloaded and distributed to others as easily. Just a short time after the first episode was released, users on the forums reported sightings of said episode on various P2P networks. The protection in form of the web-based player has not proven a strong enough barrier to keep people from pirating the episode.
What do I conclude from this? The people who suffer from this limitation (the web-based player software) are paying customers. With this limitation, I was not able to burn the episode on a CD-R and play it on my DivX-enabled DVD player - I had to watch it on my monitor in a very small window instead of being able to watch it full-screen on my TV. The pirates, on the other hand, get to do this - and they did not pay $24.95 for a year of being able to watch the animated series.
I will certainly continue to support independent creators of any kind of media that appeals to me, but my guess is that in the long run, this sort of barrier is what will drive people into piracy. I would certainly feel more comfortable with my purchase if I could actually use it as I please.