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MPAA Sues Firm For Loading Legally Owned DVDs Onto iPods

from the come-again? dept

It really was just a few days ago that the entertainment industry folks were claiming that it was the consumer electronics industry that was trying to pervert "fair use," right? Somehow, it seems like it's the entertainment industry that's the one pushing the boundaries. Almost exactly a year ago, we had a post about a new service that would sell you a video iPod and DVDs... and would load the video from the DVDs onto the iPod (and then ship you both the iPod and the DVD). This should be perfectly legal. After all, the owner has legally purchased both the iPod and the DVD, and the company is simply making the process easier by transferring the video to the iPod as well -- and it's well established that you can make a personal backup of content you have legally purchased. However, knowing how the industry views fair use, Carlo titled his post "Sue Me, I Dare You" and noted in the text: "the clock's ticking on the first lawsuit." Well, it turns out the clock ticked a little longer than we expected, but it did happen eventually. The EFF is noting that the MPAA has sued a company for doing exactly this. They are, of course, claiming that ripping the DVDs is a DMCA violation, because the DVDs have copy protection, and circumventing that is against the DMCA -- even though physically copying content you own to another format is legal fair use.

As the EFF notes in the post, while the MPAA is focusing on this company that does the ripping for you, the meaning is clear: they do not believe that making a personal copy of a DVD is legal -- despite all of the historical precedent set with CDs and software. The only "difference" here is that the DVD has some weak copy protection, and therefore the DMCA applies. In other words, they're not saying that it's illegal to make a copy -- because it's not. They're saying it's illegal to get around the copy protection. And, of course, they're doing this because they want to force you to buy the same content over and over and over again. And, yet, they still claim that it's folks like us who are changing the meaning of "fair use."

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  1. identicon
    Not for The Content Nazis, 23 Feb 2012 @ 7:28pm

    Heard of Cinavia?/Closing the analog hole

    Actually, the MPAA is successfully closing the analog hole with their blu-ray players. Heard of the analog sunset? The original hi-def component outputs are being discontinued because they aren't "secure" enough. Then the red white and yellow output will be gone. Encrypted HDMI output will be the only output allowed. I was in Walmart the other day, and some of the players only had HDMI, and maybe red white or yellow but I think there was a player that didn't have those either. A new additional layer of protection has just been started on some blu-rays and it is a watermark. It is called Cinavia. This is designed to make sure streaming or copies don't work. You have to have the original disc, and ALL blu-ray players will now be mandated to support Cinavia. How Cinavia works is that if the player sees the watermark, but does not see AACS, you will get an error message after 20 minutes. The watermark is so integrated into the audio, it is impossible to remove without destroying the audio. Get ready to keep buying. The error for a BD-rom on this will be error 3 _NOT_TRUSTED_SOURCE.

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