With Windows Media Player 9 (WM9) it's not users but broadcasters, Hollywood, and the music studios which are being offered a tempting bait - guaranteed copy protection - and they're all but hooked.
Bill Gates's vision means that users will not be able to make an illegal copy of something which is intellectual property.
MP3s will have copy protection and, more importantly, one in which Windows Media formats are the only digital games in town.
The bonus is that it's a genuine technology breakthrough: better video compression and a huge leap in the ability of studio customers to adapt WM9 Series to their own purposes with a powerful software development kit.
Intellectual property owners are keen. One Microsoft partner, Tandberg TV, will offer its big broadcast customers a choice between MPEG and Windows Media all down the line, from the head-end equipment through to the players and even set-top boxes.
Tandberg engineers believe that WM9 is a significant advance. "You can do things with this, like broadcast-quality TV over ADSL, which you couldn't very easily do with MPEG 2," said Tim Sheppard, strategic development director at Tandberg TV.
Not only is the Microsoft standard nearly ready for final release, while rival MPEG-4 standards aren't even close, it will be pervasive.
"[Microsoft] is doing a massive push into the consumer space; not just the PC, but other devices such as set-top boxes, DVD boxes, game players and so on, all of which will appear with WM9 capability," said Sheppard.
"This means that the broadcaster doesn't have to fund so much. It becomes possible to go for the standard Windows package and assume that playback will be there. Broadcasters won't have to fund the set-top box the way ITV Digital had to."
Erik Huggers, Microsoft's European group manager for the Windows Media division, claimed that the response from broadcast companies had been very enthusiastic, and not just because of the quality of the codecs or the player, but because of the focus on digital rights management.
He said that Microsoft will show "how this fits into the standards space" at the IBC show in Amsterdam in two weeks' time.
For the PC user, the main changes will be in Windows Media Player which is going to be compared with rivals like Real, Quicktime and iTunes, which have comparable feature sets, making the 'tick-list' easy to compile.
WM9 Series will be lacking only one significant feature: the ability to produce MP3 files.
Officially, this is because the MP3 'ripper' software carries a licence fee which Microsoft doesn't want to pay, leaving it down to the end user to retrieve from a remote site.
But the real agenda is that MP3 can't be copy-protected in the same way as WM formats.
Already there are CD players which will play Red Book CDs as well as WM and MP3 files. Microsoft is promoting this heavily to makers of both audio and video players.
These will all be able to check that the media is legitimately licensed, and will refuse to play media which can't be validated.
Freshly launched 11nm Qualcomm silicon will come with Adreno 612 GPU
Are pinning down the exact rate of expansion of the Hubble constant
RISC OS 5 to form the basis of RISC OS Open after Castle Technology sells to RISC OS Developments
A smartphone maker fiddling its benchmarking scores? That's unusual, isn't it?