by Mike Masnick
Thu, Mar 6th 2008 9:51am
Kevin Donovan writes in to point to law professor Tim Armstrong wondering if the DMCA is still relevant at all, now that so many content providers are dumping DRM. He also notes that we're seeing fewer DMCA-related cases. Kevin supplies his own excellent response talking about the legacy of the DMCA, including the anti-circumvention clause, noting that it's still holding people hostage. For example, he points out that everyone who bought an HD DVD player (picking the losing side in the battle) now would be breaking the law if they merely wanted to move the HD DVD content they legally purchased over to a more usable format. He also points to the importance of the DMCA's safe harbor provisions, which protect service providers from copyright infringement by their users. Both of these are good points. Also, I find Armstrong's first point, about fewer DMCA cases, unconvincing. All it really means is that many of the larger points related to how the law should be interpreted have been decided by the courts. That doesn't change the chilling effects that those rulings have left behind. The law itself is still very, very relevant -- mostly for unfortunate reasons.
If you liked this post, you may also be interested in...
- Australian Govt.: Just Kidding On That Whole Safe Harbors Reform Thing, Guys
- Congress Leaks Draft Bill To Move Copyright Office Out Of The Library Of Congress
- Supreme Court Says You Can Copyright Elements Of 'Useful Articles' -- Which May Spell Disaster For 3D Printing & More
- Supreme Court Says Patent Trolls Can Wait A While Before Suing
- Industry-Hated Game Emulators Save Two Video Games For Posterity