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Old 11-01-2006, 10:49 AM   #1
nekokami
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BBC reports: Copying own CDs 'should be legal'

This could end up having interesting implications in the eBook world:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/6095612.stm

"A think-tank has called for outdated copyright laws to be rewritten to take account of new ways people listen to music, watch films and read books."

Later quote:
Report author Kay Withers said: "The idea of all-rights reserved doesn't make sense for the digital era and it doesn't make sense to have a law that everyone breaks. To give the IP regime legitimacy it must command public respect."

Now that's common sense. It's not in case law yet, and it's only one country, but it's a good start.
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Old 11-01-2006, 11:07 AM   #2
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Yep. It's out of hand, and DRM is being used for what is clearly not in the best interest of the public which is the original motivation for copyright law in the first place. Imagine the textbook market. Suppose if bookstores sold textbooks like software or e-books or DVDs. They would come with a card that you had to fill out before you could buy it. That card would say something like...

Only you can read the book. You promise not to give it to anyone else when you are done with it. It can only be read when it's physically laid on the one desk that you will be licensed to read the book on. In order to ensure that you are abiding by these rules, there will be something attached to the book -- a "Dont Remove the Media" from your desk gadget. It will take pictures of the surrounding area to ensure that the book is only read by you on the proper desk, and will flash you with annoying laser lights in your eyes until you comply. If you are found breaking the terms of this agreement it will be a Federal felony which we will prosecute vigorously. You must also read the first pages aloud, and take no less than 2 mins, where you will learn about how the FBI and Interpol will find you and kill you if you break the law and don't comply with our terms.

They would certainly feel self-justified, right? This is only fair, isn't it? "After all, it's our book and we should be able to determine the terms under which you read it, right?!"
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Old 11-01-2006, 11:29 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Russell
You must also read the first pages aloud, and take no less than 2 mins, where you will learn about how the FBI and Interpol will find you and kill you if you break the law and don't comply with our terms.
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Old 11-01-2006, 12:38 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Russell
It will take pictures of the surrounding area to ensure that the book is only read by you on the proper desk, and will flash you with annoying laser lights in your eyes until you comply.
I figure GPS with electroshock if you try to move the book once you open the cover and break the seal.

Actually, this doesn't go far enough. You ought to have to thumbprint the book to get the cover to open. Maybe the book should even continuously monitor the biometric data of the person holding it. You shouldn't be allowed to let someone else read the book, even at your desk.

All this reminds me of Garth Nix's Abhorsen series. The Book of the Dead had some pretty tight DRM, as I recall. "Only a trained necromancer could open that book... and only an uncorrupted Charter Mage could close it." Anyone else who tried would get burned to a crisp. Now that's DRM!

Nix's books sometimes have other interesting features, too: "You could never truly finish reading such a book, for the contents changed at need, at the original maker's whim, or to suit the phases of the moon or the patterns of the weather. Some of the books had contents you coudn't even remember till certain events might come to pass. Invariably, this was an act of kindness from the creator of the book, for such contents invariably dealt with things that would be a burden to recall with every waking day." Yeah, I've read stuff I wish I could forget until I "need" it, too.

Nix's books are available in Mobipocket and Palm Reader formats for mostly paperback prices, though I don't think they have such tight DRM (or such intriguing content access features). Highly recommended.
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Old 11-01-2006, 12:51 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by nekokami
Now that's common sense. It's not in case law yet, and it's only one country, but it's a good start.
I think that if you research the question, you'll find that there are countries that already allow this.

As far as I can judge, it's still allowed in Sweden -- national copyright laws allow a few copies of literary and artistic to be made for personal use. There are exceptions, of course, for things like computer software and works of sculpture and architecture, entire books, as well as the role of third parties.
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Old 11-01-2006, 01:14 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ath
I think that if you research the question, you'll find that there are countries that already allow this.

As far as I can judge, it's still allowed in Sweden -- national copyright laws allow a few copies of literary and artistic to be made for personal use. There are exceptions, of course, for things like computer software and works of sculpture and architecture, entire books, as well as the role of third parties.
Well, it might be the law, but if you are, for example, Virgiin Records, and put DRM on your CD so that it can't be transferred to an mp3 player, the company usurps the law and copyright convention for the last, oh, 50 years or so.

And as a buyer, Virgin Records won't get any more of my money - EVER - even if they change their approach.

(Sticks tongue out, give rasberry to Branson).
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Old 11-01-2006, 01:20 PM   #7
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Hey GB cant even use a FM transmitter to broadcast a MP3 Player to the car radio... Hard they are either possible allow it or to think on it...
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Old 11-01-2006, 03:27 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by VillageReader
Well, it might be the law, but if you are, for example, Virgiin Records, and put DRM on your CD so that it can't be transferred to an mp3 player, the company usurps the law and copyright convention for the last, oh, 50 years or so.
As far as I can see, the BBC news was about copyright law only -- is that a misunderstanding? Licensing is something else.
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Old 11-01-2006, 03:39 PM   #9
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As far as I can see, the BBC news was about copyright law only -- is that a misunderstanding? Licensing is something else.
I'm talking about a Virgin audio CD (copyright applies, not patent or software licensing) that I could not transfer to my mp3 player because of DRM protection. I stand by my original comment (that way if someone shoots at the comment they miss me).
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Old 11-01-2006, 04:09 PM   #10
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Watch out for those ricochets, Tex!

Well, hopefully Virgin will change its ways if the GB law is passed... but it's not passed yet, and Virgin (and Sony) are the kind of companies that will take efforts to stall passage, if they think it will cost them. So let's see where all this goes.
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Old 11-04-2006, 03:10 AM   #11
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Australia is already doing it.

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Old 11-04-2006, 08:16 AM   #12
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A good effort, and an interesting set of laws. A few areas bother me:
  • The guidelines state that a consumer can record a broadcast/cable/satellite movie or TV program exactly once, and once it's played back, it must be deleted.
  • It forbids you to make a collection of your favorite TV shows to keep.
  • It states that you can watch said recording with your family or friends, but not at a public gathering, but there are no definitions that designate how many friends you can have, or exactly how you must arrange your watching venue, before the venue becomes "public." (Example, does this mean I can't watch a recording on my patio where my neighbors can see it?)
  • It states that you can copy a VHS tape to a digital player, but you cannot copy a DVD to a portable player.
  • It states that you cannot make a backup CD, but you can make a compilation CD, as long as the song order is changed.

Some of these guidelines seem vague at best, and draconian at worst.
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Old 11-06-2006, 09:34 AM   #13
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Interesting notes on The Register on DRM (Peter Jenner says it's dead), future development, and a conference:

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2006/11/03/peter_jenner/

The pot is boiling ...
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