Motion Picture Academy Member Unhappy About Being Treated Like A Criminal
from the be-careful-with-those-screeners dept
We’ve covered the rather ridiculous lengths that the MPAA has gone through over the past few years to try to “protect” screener copies of the movies it sends out to Motion Picture Academy members as they vote for the Academy Awards. First, they tried banning DVDs altogether, since they were too easy to copy and upload online. After complaints, and even a lawsuit, the MPAA relented, but started sending special DVDs that could only be played in special DVD players. That was also a cumbersome and annoying process, that was finally dropped this year. However, the industry is still using digital watermarking, to mark exactly who each copy went to so it can track down who leaked it. Apparently, the movies also come with all sorts of forms that require signatures demanding you won’t share the film, as well as reminders as the film starts that you are not to share it with anyone.
It would appear that Academy members are pushing back a little on being treated like criminals just to vote for the Oscars. TorrentFreak points us to a rather amusing tongue-in-cheek analysis of one Academy member about his fears should any one of the DVD screeners get into the wrong hands. He discusses (jokingly) just how much it would cost to properly secure the screeners to guarantee that they wouldn’t accidentally be watched by someone else and concludes it’s just not worth being a member of the Academy anymore, as the cost of protecting the screeners is much higher than the benefit of being a member.
“So that’s the cost of a surveillance camera, guard dog, German lessons, a safe, plus ADT, making a total of $8730.00 as an initial, screener-security investment plus my Academy dues of $250 per year. And who knows how much yearly maintenance of all that would cost. Dog food, vet bills…. $9000.00 for starters plus yearly maintenance. I just couldn’t figure out how to do it. Even if we moved to a smaller apartment. Even if took a job managing an apartment building again; I just couldn?t figure how to do it.
“And I have reluctantly come to a decision. So that I won’t contribute to film piracy by inadvertently allowing one of my screeners to fall into the wrong hands, pirating hands, thereby costing the film industry millions of dollars (not to mention putting me in prison), I will not renew my membership in the Academy.
“It makes me sad, but I’m also happy in a way. Because without those screeners being delivered to my vulnerable little home, with its multiple and human inefficiencies, I know that it will no longer be possible for me to harm the studios, my industry colleagues and the Academy. Yes, so by resigning from the Academy I will contribute to saving the film industry, and I have to be happy about that.”