Items tagged "Anti-circumvention"

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The Story of Cell Phone Unlocking Reform

July 29, 2014 1201 , Anti-circumvention , Cell Phone Unlocking , DMCA

This is the story of historic legislation getting passed through an extremely partisan and divided Congress.

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We’re Asking Congress to Fix the DMCA

March 28, 2013 Anti-circumvention , DMCA , DRM

Today, we sent a letter to the leaders of the House and Senate Judiciary Committees, asking them to pass a strong, permanent fix to the cell phone unlocking problem, and to take a deeper look at the problems caused by the anticircumvention provisions of the DMCA. The letter, available here, is signed by over thirty consumer groups, companies, and online communities, and joined by a number of academics and activists.

We want to make sure that all of the people who were upset that the DMCA could prevent them from unlocking their phones get a solution that actually fixes the problem by changing the law, not just reversing the Library of Congress’s decision and waiting for a do-over a few years from now.

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Will the White House Explain why Copyright Laws are Privileging Cell Phone Companies?

February 22, 2013 Anti-circumvention , Competition , Copyright Office , DRM , Handset Exclusivity

So 100,000 of you (and counting) are as puzzled as we are as to why copyright laws such as the DMCA should prevent people from keeping their existing phones when they switch phone companies. By hitting that threshold of signatures several days before the 30-day deadline, the petition should generate a response from the White House.

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The 1201 Hearings- Protecting Business Models or Promoting Creative Progress?

June 11, 2012 Anti-circumvention , DMCA

Last week, a revolving door of digital media users took turns pleading with the Copyright Office for permission to use their content. Teachers and documentarians sought the right to create high-quality video clips for use in their classrooms and documentaries; the visually impaired argued for the right to enable read-aloud functionality on eBooks and enjoy movies with narrated visual descriptions; and Public Knowledge, advocating for the public at large, sought a right to copy lawfully owned DVDs for personal use (e.g. to play a DVD movie on an iPad, or similar device).

How did we arrive at this place, where copyright users must ask permission to use lawfully acquired content in non-infringing ways? The short version of the story goes like this:

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TPP Deep Dive: Copyright and Digital Locks

May 11, 2012 Anti-circumvention , DMCA , TPP

This post is the second in a series of blog posts examining Public Knowledge’s concerns with the proposed copyright provisions of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). Yesterday we discussed copyright presumptions that favor copyright owners in litigation, and today we examine the parts of the TPP that use copyright law to prohibit users from circumventing digital locks over works.

For the time being, this series is examining the US’s copyright proposals for the TPP [pdf] from February 2011, which is the most recent text that is publicly available.

Digital Locks in US Law

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No, Really, You Should Be Able to Rip Your DVDs

March 2, 2012 Anti-circumvention , Copyright Office , DMCA , Fair Use

Today, we followed up our request urging the Copyright Office to allow consumers to break the digital locks on their DVDs so they can play them on their phones, tablets, and other digital devices. Along with the reply comments we filed today, we included the statements of nearly 400 users (warning: massive pdf) who stated for the record that they own lawfully made DVDs and would like to be able to space shift their movies exactly the way they can shift music from CDs to their iPods.

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Help Make it Legal to Rip Your DVDs

January 26, 2012 Anti-circumvention , Copyright Office , DMCA , DRM

Quick – what’s the legal difference between ripping a CD and ripping a DVD?  Ripping a DVD is a violation of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) and could get you sued.  Unlike CDs, DVDs are protected by a digital lock.  The mere act of breaking that lock – even for a legitimate purpose – is a violation of the DMCA. 

Fortunately, the DMCA also has a built-in mechanism to deal with situations where it prevents people from doing legitimate things.  And that’s why we need your help to make sure that DVD ripping is granted an exemption from the DMCA.

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Manager’s Amendment of SOPA Doesn’t Fix What’s Ailing This Bill

December 14, 2011 Anti-circumvention , DMCA , Enforcement , Filtering , International

Monday afternoon, the House Judiciary Committee released its planned manager’s amendment to SOPA, claiming that it eliminated significant concerns with the bill. While it does fix some of the current version’s outrageous proposals, it leaves some of the most dangerous provisions largely intact. Here’s a brief rundown of our concerns with the manager’s amendment.

DNS Filtering

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Public Knowledge Asks Copyright Office To Allow DVD ‘Space Shifting’

December 1, 2011 Anti-circumvention , Press Release

Public Knowledge today recommended to the U.S. Copyright Office that consumers be given the ability to “space shift” DVDs among various devices they may own, by cracking the encryption on the DVDs.

 PK made the recommendation as part of the Copyright Office’s proceeding that takes place every three years to evaluate suggested exemptions to the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA).

The PK filing is here.

Unlike music CDs, video DVDs are usually encrypted.  It is currently a violation of the DMCA to break the encryption in order to copy the video onto another device.

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Near Final ACTA Text Released

October 6, 2010 ACTA , Anti-circumvention , Enforcement

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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