Entries Matching: Anti-circumvention

Near Final ACTA Text Released

The United States Trade Representative (USTR) and its negotiating partners today released the near-final draft of the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA). This text, while similar to the last draft leaked in August, has a few notable changes, most of which make the text far less problematic.

First, the provision requiring Internet Service Providers (ISPs) to disclose the identity of alleged infringers now contains a balancing provision. It states that procedures to disclose such information “shall be implemented in a manner that avoids the creation of barriers to legitimate activity, including electronic commerce, and, consistent with each Party’s law, preserves fundamental principles such as freedom of expression, fair process, and privacy.”

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It’s Not Like Roku, Boxee, Apple, Google, and Microsoft Don’t Know that You Might Like Cable Cha

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If you read the tech press closely, it looks like we are on the verge of an Internet video golden age.  HD Roku boxes now cost just $60!  The Boxee Box is available for pre-order!  Apple TV is finally more than a hobby!  Google TV announced features!  The fall Xbox360 update will bring ESPN3!

Each of these developments is fantastic.  They bring Netflix and YouTube and Amazon Unbox and Revision3 and Pandora and all sorts of Internet goodies to a big TV.  They offer attractive, easy to use interfaces.  Some even let you move content between various devices.

However, news about these awesome toys may raise a few questions in your mind.

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Public Knowledge and Rock Your Phone Pleased Copyright Office Expands Consumer Rights

Earlier today, the Copyright Office of the Library of Congress released the results of its triennial review of applications for exemptions from the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA).  The ruling found that adding programs to the iPhone (called jailbreaking) is not a violation of copyright law.  The decision is here.


The following statement is attributed to Sherwin Siy, deputy legal director of Public Knowledge:

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Defining ‘circumvention’: another DMCA case

What do printer cartridges, garage door openers, and universal power supply calibrations have in common? They all use copyrighted code, they all feature technological impediments to unauthorized execution of their code -- and now they've all been the focus of appellate litigation under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA).

One of the most-litigated and most-argued provisions of the DMCA is section 1201, the "anti-circumvention" provision which forbids breaking or bypassing certain technological measures that protect copyrighted works. Broadly speaking, section 1201(a) deals with technological measures that restrict access to a copyrighted work, and 1201(b) deals with copy controls and other measures that restrict not your access to a work but what you can do with the work after accessing it. Section 1201(a) forbids both trafficking in circumvention tools and the act of circumvention itself; 1201(b) covers only trafficking. An ongoing source of controversy is whether and how closely 'access' under 1201(a) must be tied to an underlying act of copyright infringement before circumvention liability will attach. To put it another way, is what you were going to do with a work once you accessed it relevant to the question of whether you're allowed to grant yourself access? Different appellate courts have come down on opposite sides of this issue, and another circuit court just waded into the mix.

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