Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 4th Oct 2011 13:31 UTC
Legal A few days ago, several countries signed ACTA, the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement. As you are probably aware, ACTA was drafted up in secret, and is basically Obama/Biden's attempt to impose the US' draconian pro-big business/big content protection laws on the rest of the world ('sign it, or else'). The European Parliament still has to vote on it, and as such, Douwe Korff, professor of international law at the London Metropolitan University, and Ian Brown senior research fellow at the University of Oxford, performed a 90-page study, with a harsh conclusion: ACTA violates fundamental human rights.
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RE[6]: Call me contrarian...
by lemur2 on Fri 7th Oct 2011 02:54 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Call me contrarian..."
lemur2
Member since:
2007-02-17

While it is true that the DMCA does not provison the locking out or collection of license fees, it enforce any digital rights management included on digital media. The DMCA is a pain in the ass, but well as serveral other things that are included in the DMCA, it does provide companies with anti-circumvention of their encryption methods. http://www.chillingeffects.org/anticircumvention/ You might want to read up on what the DMCA actually allows you to do. That site is what google uses when they have takedown notices for search results. Remember it only applies to members of the USA - its not enforable anywhere else in the world, as such and like I said, is why the VideoLAN (who are in France - that outside of world America) people were able to create the libs and thus why VLC player works without a takedown notice. If the libs or VLC was created in the USA, then it'd have been removed long ago.


http://arstechnica.com/old/content/2005/02/4636.ars

http://arstechnica.com/old/content/2004/10/4352.ars

"To the extent compatibility requires that a particular code sequence be included in the component device to permit its use, the merger and 'scenes a faire' doctrines generally preclude the code sequence from obtaining copyright."

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sc%C3%A8nes_%C3%A0_fai...

VLC software is not a copy of any other software. VLC does not use the software from the DVD consortium. The actual CSS algorithm is effectively a "scene that must be done" in order to play a DVD. Playing a DVD does not copy its content in a way that violates copyrights. As long as the VLC software in question is being used to play videos, and consumers legally bought DVDs and a DVD drive, then essentially it would seem there is no case for VLC to answer. Even under the DMCA.

When actual illegal content (i.e. content which violates a copyright, even a copyright held by an American interest) is hosted on download sites, such as Rapidshare, anywhere in the world, copyright owners (even American ones) are able to use the DMCA and issue a "takedown notice" to get that content removed.

There have been no takedown notices issued for VLC. Playing a DVD using VLC is not illegal.

Edited 2011-10-07 03:07 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[7]: Call me contrarian...
by saynte on Fri 7th Oct 2011 04:14 in reply to "RE[6]: Call me contrarian..."
saynte Member since:
2007-12-10

I am curious, did you read the parent's post? I am only asking because it basically spells out what part of using VLC could be considered illegal. It also spells out why you wouldn't find a DMCA notice issued for VLC.

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[8]: Call me contrarian...
by lemur2 on Fri 7th Oct 2011 05:11 in reply to "RE[7]: Call me contrarian..."
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

I am curious, did you read the parent's post? I am only asking because it basically spells out what part of using VLC could be considered illegal. It also spells out why you wouldn't find a DMCA notice issued for VLC.


Did you mean this?

http://www.chillingeffects.org/anticircumvention/

"In order to control the distribution and use of their works, copyright owners are increasingly embedding access (keep you from accessing the work) and copy (control what you do with the work) protection schemes in their digital works. Under section 1201 of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), the circumvention of these access mechanisms is illegal, with only a few narrow statutory exemptions. The DMCA also prohibits the distribution of programs that can be used to circumvent both copy control and access control technologies."

Neither VLC nor CSS itself does anything with regard to "control what you do with the work". VLC does not copy works on DVDs.

CSS is a means to "keep you from accessing the work". However, I quoted a decision from a court case where even the DMCA cannot "keep you from accessing the work" insofar as accessing the work is what is required in order for people to do what the product was intended to provide. When people have legally purchased a DVD and a DVD drive, then they have the right to play the DVD, since doing that is what they have paid for.

In other words, "circumvention provisions" are not protected under the DMCA if they don't actually circumvent copying the work in order to violate copyright. Lexmark found this out when they tried to use the DMCA to prevent someone from making Lexmark-compatible printer ink cartridges. Lexmark found out that the "anti-circumvention" provisions of the DMCA didn't apply here, because the DMCA is an anti-copying law, not an anti-competition law.

In an entirely similar fashion, the mere naming of CSS as a "copying prevention device" does not make it one. VLC implements CSS in order to play DVDs, not to copy them. Therefore, anti-circumvention provisions of the DMCA do not apply to VLC software.

The Lexmark case is very strong legal precedent for this. I'm sorry that I didn't make this clear enough so that you were able to follow the reasoning.

As for the fact that VLC is written in France, that too is a red herring. If a French website hosted an illegal copy of a movie for which an American firm held the copyright, then the American firm would indeed be able to get the infringing copy taken down.

Edited 2011-10-07 05:26 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[7]: Call me contrarian...
by sagum on Fri 7th Oct 2011 09:18 in reply to "RE[6]: Call me contrarian..."
sagum Member since:
2006-01-23

From the pages you've linked, Judge Merritt said;

Judge Merritt in his concurring opinion spoke out strongly against the use of the DMCA as a monopolist?s tool.


By contrast, Lexmark would have us read this statute in such a way that any time a manufacturer intentionally circumvents any technological measure and accesses a protected work it necessarily violates the statute regardless of its ?purpose.? Such a reading would ignore the precise language ? ?for the purpose of? ? as well as the main point of the DMCA ? to prohibit the pirating of copyright-protected works such as movies, music, and computer programs. If we were to adopt Lexmark?s reading of the statute, manufacturers could potentially create monopolies for replacement parts simply by using similar, but more creative, lock-out codes.



So DMCA is, was and continues to provide measures for the "prohibit the pirating of copyright-protected works such as movies, music, and computer programs"

Regardless of how you want to read into the DMCA, it no longer affects DVD play back anymore, but you seem hell bent on trying to pass on the rights of the rest of the world in the USA for some reason.

And you are right in one instance. VLC was never illegal - American's using it to watch or rip DVDs were using it illegally.

Reply Parent Score: 1