Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

USA Gov. Brief in MPAA vs. 2600 case Online

michael posted more than 13 years ago | from the petition-your-government-for-a-redress-of-grievances dept.

The Courts 317

The U.S. Government plans to enter the MPAA vs. 2600 case on the side of the movie studios, arguing in court that the District Court's injunction against distribution of or linking to DeCSS was correct and that the Court of Appeals should not overturn it. The legal brief the government filed is available, as are some news stories. In general, the government supports all of Judge Kaplan's "best" positions in his decision: linking is not speech, linking is equivalent to distributing banned content yourself, etc.

cancel ×

317 comments

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

One good thing is possable......... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#408051)

We will end up with a new def. of what free speech is.

and anyway, if free speech isn't linking, then all one needs to do is list the entire source code in on a web page. If that isn't free speech then I think the printed media would be in an uproar.

Re:don't bother (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#408053)

Nobody wrote DeCSS to teach you encryption, and you'll never convince a court that they did.

Not even if I show them this:
http://people.a2000.nl/mwielaar/dvd-css/csspaper/c ss.html [a2000.nl]
The Cryptanalysis of Contents Scrambling System paper by Frank A. Stevenson

Freedom to shut-up ? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#408054)

Apparently were not too far from this:

http://www.segfault.org/story.phtml?mode=2&id=39b4 fa94-003d9000

Re:Argh! This sucks (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#408055)

They would consider it harmful speech and would limit it. The first amendment, although it says the freedoms should not be abridged, is sometimes disregarded if the government defines it as harmful, and since they see it as affecting an industry, they might say it is harmful, and they will likely try to argue against it in the same ways the RIAA argued against Napster, that it is being used for illegal purposes. This should seem rather absurd that this is considered harmful speech, but that is likely the argument that will be used.

so don't link. (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#408056)

if you can't link, type. the act of linking COULD be considered "equivalent to distributing banned content yourself" since in a way, it's aiding & abeting (i.e. if i tell you where you can get drugs, it's legal; if i take you there, it's ILLEGAL).

so if that's illegal, then don't use a hyperlink. people can copy & paste text links into their browser. this is an easy one to get past, should tick off the MPAA something nice, and will probably fall under free speech since this time, it's simply information.

Re:HAve you contacted your Congressman (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#408057)

You'd think this would be a perfect case for the ACLU to take up because the DMCA does, indeed, restrict civil liberties, and they pledge to uphold the constitution yet they let such a blatant violation of the first amendment go unopposed. I really think that while restricting material goods might be legitimate, the restricting of information is wrong, and very much unconstitutional. I just hope that if they are able to restrict the DeCSS source, that it gets posted on servers in Russia, China, and wherever else it can without the big business of the US stepping in to force it to be taken down. Maybe it seems like I'm contradicting myself, but I could accept restricting information on things such as how to build bombs because those are of use only to harm, but that's a far cry from restricting the distribution of the DeCSS source. This is wrong no matter how you look at it.

Re:As long as we're talking about what might be... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#408058)

Most people shot with guns die
That is blatantly false.
Most people shot with guns do NOT die...
The mortality rate for gunshot victims is fairly low.

Re:Corley should drop the case (1)

Ranger Rick (197) | more than 13 years ago | (#408059)

The amateurish "according to my reading of the Constitution" analysis of people who don't know shit about the case law is embarrassing

But isn't that exactly the problem? If what it says is no longer what it means, we've already strayed too far. If our "unalienable" rights have become malleable, they're not exactly unalienable, are they?


1st Law Of Networking: Loose ends are bad, termination is good.

Bottom line... (1)

kir (583) | more than 13 years ago | (#408060)

Isn't the bottom line here simply this - WE'RE SCREWED AND THERE IS NOTHING *WE* CAN DO ABOUT IT.

The corps have the one advantage they need: Most people don't give a RATS ASS about the MPAA/DVDCCA's scheme, let alone even BEGIN to understand it. Remember folks, *WE'RE* in the minority.

If I'm wrong on this, flame my ass. If there is something *WE* can do, please enlighten me. BUT, don't give me some long rant on free speech and the size of your penis. Give me a real answer. What can I, Joe Schmuck Anybody, REALLY do about this?


Word!

--
Kir

Re:As long as we're talking about what might be... (1)

Crass Spektakel (4597) | more than 13 years ago | (#408074)

Actually Chances to die when hit by a nuke is much higher than dying after being hit by a Smith&Weson.

But recently more people died of guns than of nukes.

Nevertheless, I would like to finally remove the ban on thermonuclear handgrenades for selfdefence. They are pretty cool, you can throw them 50m and they have a deathrange of 5km. Believe me, one or two of those get crime out of town easily.

The Real Meaning of this (1)

jjr (6873) | more than 13 years ago | (#408076)

There will be no such thing in the future as fair use. No such things as time shifting. We will be in a society such that people will not be able to record there favorite show any more. All content will will be control in how long and how much you can view it. hmmm Well this is not what I want to see happen in the future.

Re:Supreme Court should hear this case. (1)

IQ (14453) | more than 13 years ago | (#408086)

So you are telling us that this is vaporware. Why not just release it? The linux community can deal with code that *not finished* 8)
I think this is just a plant to bolster the case against 2600. Yes, another conspiracy...

Re:don't be silly; I didn't mean that (1)

IQ (14453) | more than 13 years ago | (#408087)

Shouldn't that be 'more signal and less noise'?

Re:Development of Encryption Technology (1)

maroberts (15852) | more than 13 years ago | (#408090)

Yep, it's one of my favourite movie lines....

Ironic, especially when you find out more about Verbal towards the end of the movie....
(trying not to spoil the plot here)

Re:don't bother (1)

maroberts (15852) | more than 13 years ago | (#408091)

It didn't teach me encryption, I'm familiar with is principles from doing Condition Access Teletext and other stuff, but it advanced my state of knowledge, which is all that is required.

Re:don't bother (1)

maroberts (15852) | more than 13 years ago | (#408092)

Yes, Frank A. Stephensons papers/webpages on DeCSS were read extremely avidly by me. They were a great help to advancing my state of knowledge.

Big Brother has a nasty bite. (1)

dreamking (28787) | more than 13 years ago | (#408096)

This is just the sort of ridiculous position I've come to expect from the US government, and with Bush in office I'm sure we can expect alot more "you scratch my back and I'll scratch yours" play with big corps. It wouldn't be so bad except the WTO wants to impose US trade policies, patents, and rules on everyone else in the world too. Any other geeks up for buying an island and forming our own country? *g*

Re:This sucks (1)

dreamking (28787) | more than 13 years ago | (#408097)

Actually It has alot to do with the First Amendment. They may not be able to stop 2600 magazine from publishing what they do(until they figure out how to get rid of that irritating constitution) but they can certainly use it as a judgement against their moral character pertaining to anything else they can get 'em on. If the defendants look like bad guys to the general public then they must be bad guys.

Re:Bottom line... (1)

radja (58949) | more than 13 years ago | (#408110)

move to europe. I could use a new neighbour.

//rdj

Re:linking is not speech (1)

Snard (61584) | more than 13 years ago | (#408111)

In further news, the publishers of the White Pages in thousands of cities nationwide were added to the list of defendents, since their published phone books list the telephone numbers of many of the ISP's who have been known to host the aforementioned DeCSS files. Film at 11.

Re:Supreme Court should hear this case. (1)

treke (62626) | more than 13 years ago | (#408112)

Intervideo will most likely not support their product on Alpha's, Sun's, PPC's, and the other architechtures Linux runs on. Eliminating Linux because there is an Authorized Player still leaves other systems. Net BSD, Solaris, GNU/Hurd, and any other system you might possibly want DVD capabilities on. The arguement still holds that there will not be an authorized player for everyplatform that it's wanted on.
treke

Two Words: Common Law (1)

Student_Tech (66719) | more than 13 years ago | (#408114)

People have been linking to "questionable"/illegal things for years. How could this judge decide that the linking is now illegal?
"Computer code is not purely expressive any more than the assassination of a political figure is purely a political statement," Kaplan wrote in his opinion today.
Does this mean that people that write computer code kill people to make political statements?

For all I know copy machines are next on the list of devices that are helping people to break copyrights, and they will be ruled illegal.

huge difference, here's why (1)

Ender Ryan (79406) | more than 13 years ago | (#408116)

If you yell fire in a crowded theatre and everyone runs for their lives because they think they're going to die and people get killed/injured, you've just tricked a few hundred people into getting themselves hurt. If, however, there really IS a fire, then you haven't broken the law.

If what you are saying isn't true and people get hurt because of it, then you're responsible. If what you are saying IS true, then that's freedom of speech.

Argh! This sucks (1)

Ender Ryan (79406) | more than 13 years ago | (#408117)

Why the fuck does the US Gov. feel the need to step in here? And why the hell are they trying to help out the MPAA? That is absolutely ridiculous, linking is OBVIOUSLY just speach, it doesn't directly cause any damage, and the DMCA (which this whole damn case is based on!) is OBVIOUSLY unconstitutional! This is absolutely insane!

The DMCA has got to go.

no, you're exactly right (1)

Ender Ryan (79406) | more than 13 years ago | (#408118)

One of the most frequently used tactics in litigation in this country is to keep the other guy in court till he runs out of money.

So I would say it's more like Liberty and Justice for the rich.

that's not how I see it (1)

Ender Ryan (79406) | more than 13 years ago | (#408119)

Shouting FIRE in a crowded theatre creates an immediate danger(possibly life threatening) to the people there and is therefore not free speech. Linking to a site containing illegal content does not create an immediate danger, someone else has to act on it to cause damage. Further, the damage that can be caused is monitary, and has in no way even been shown to be true that damage actually could be caused and therefore the ruling was completely wrong.

you are correct (1)

Ender Ryan (79406) | more than 13 years ago | (#408120)

CSS is not a copy protection system, it is a region control system (which the legality of is questionable in many areas).

DeCSS allows you to view the mpeg data in unencrypted form. You CAN use this to copy the mpegs, but then you have 4 GIGS of mpegs, there's a lot more you have to do for this to be useful for piracy. There are also MANY other ways of doing this, and there are also MANY other uses for DeCSS.

DeCSS is NOT a piracy tool, not even close.

supid AC (1)

Ender Ryan (79406) | more than 13 years ago | (#408121)

I shout when I want to be heard IRL, I'll shout here too if I feel like it.

Are you are a complete moron to think what I said invalidates copyright in any way, it's just not constitutional in it's current form, especially with the DMCA.

If the length of copyright is anywhere near as long as the average lifespan(which it is) that is in effect not a limited time and therefore unconstitutional.

If copyright is used for any other purpose but to promote progress then it is unconstitutional. Copyright is being used to make as much money as possible for the copyright holder, and therefore unconstitutional. There is a balance somewhere that needs to be met, but that's not what it's aiming for anymore.

Re:good morning... (1)

philipm (106664) | more than 13 years ago | (#408136)

All my trolls are belong to us!

Re:Jeebus christ (1)

philipm (106664) | more than 13 years ago | (#408137)

all your guns are belong to us!

Re:This is what happens... (1)

philipm (106664) | more than 13 years ago | (#408138)

all your cabbage are belong to us!

Re:Gov vs 2600 (1)

philipm (106664) | more than 13 years ago | (#408139)

vich country are you froom? is it ze stinky one or the convict one or the spanky spanky one?

Re:completely wrong (1)

nlvp (115149) | more than 13 years ago | (#408148)

Can someone please clarify for me the following?

Why do you need DeCSS to copy a DVD? I was under the impression that any licensed DVD player could do the work of DeCSS, and that therefore all you needed to do was copy it - encrypted byte for encrypted byte, and then run it through another DVD player and voila!

So I thought that DeCSS was a "viewer-enabler" but not a copying system.

The court obviously doesn't agree with me and I can't figure out why not - either I have the technology wrong or I've misunderstood what the court's argument is - how is CSS a copy-protection system?

Run for office (1)

bildstorm (129924) | more than 13 years ago | (#408151)

Ok. How about it? Let's get a good network going for those of us politically-minded!

We've got until November of 2002 to get the word out and make people aware. We're sick of ignorant politicians and dumb bureacrats. So let's do this!

Of course, for those of you ignore the news until it comes up like this, well, it's time to start learning about the world and what's in it. But can you imagine what an effect this would have if we even got 100 of us running for office united across the country?

Re:Supreme Court should hear this case. (1)

luckykaa (134517) | more than 13 years ago | (#408152)

However, I believe that there is as yet no BSD DVD player...

Kaplan dismissed the argument too quickly anyway, based on the fact that it was also available for Windows.

Search Engines (1)

Shocker69 (141391) | more than 13 years ago | (#408155)

If linking to illegal material is against the law, I would think that every search engine should be taken down. How can this be different?

Re:expected, but scary (1)

nothng (147342) | more than 13 years ago | (#408158)

"These Things take a while to prepare, so I wonder if this is something that was developed under the Clinton Administration, and then now has the blessing of the Bush. It is doubtful that the Bush folks would have put something like this just since the swearing in, or even since the election, since they were so distracted with other business."
Sadly I think big business aleady bought both parties long before the election. Also this case for the majority of the US is widely unnoticed. Aside from geeks, hardcore freedom advocates, and those involed with MPAA not many people even know that their DVD's only play on regional players or have a clue what CSS and DeCSS are

I've asked serveral of my classmates about DeCSS, MPAA and this case. Not a single one had a clue what I was talking about. Our school news paper in the past 6 months has published several articles about Napster, but not a single one on DeCSS. It's partly the media's fault for not giving it more publicity, but mostly I think it tends to be a bit to "technical" for most people and they scan over the articles (on the rare occassion there are articles), see some anacronyms they've never seen before and put it off as being an article about computers instead of our rights.

Corley should drop the case (1)

streetlawyer (169828) | more than 13 years ago | (#408176)

What this says to me:

Corley should drop the case. The only real hope he has is the overbreadth attack on the DMCA; Kaplan was entirely right to say that while code is speech, the DMCA is a constitutionally permissible restriction on speech.

So all that's left is to say that the DMCA is overbroad because it restricts fair use. And that's going to be very difficult to establish while DVD remains a minority format and all the material you might want to use is available elsewhere. The US Govt. is right that "having to buy another copy or make do with an inferior recording" is not the sort of impediment to fair use of which overbreadth defences are made.

So Corley should drop his appeal, take his licks and come back with a better case once copy-prevention has become ubiquitous, at which time the constitutional argument will be stronger. Losing on this one due to contingent facts of the case is going to make it much more difficult to win in future with a stronger case.

Oh yeh, and people, can we stick to pointing out technical errors in the document? The amateurish "according to my reading of the Constitution" analysis of people who don't know shit about the case law is embarrassing, unhelpful, and only raises the overall signal/noise ratio

don't bother (1)

streetlawyer (169828) | more than 13 years ago | (#408177)

Nobody wrote DeCSS to teach you encryption, and you'll never convince a court that they did.

don't be silly; I didn't mean that (1)

streetlawyer (169828) | more than 13 years ago | (#408179)

Lawyers are going to be the ones who interpret the Constitution no matter what you want or say. Think for yourself by all means, but when one of our friends is on trial for his liberty and rights we hold dear are at stake, it would be better for you to concentrate your help on where it is most practical use. Once the immediate problem is over, I'd love to discuss the Constitution with you, but for the time being, we need more noise and less signal

whoever gave you that idea? (1)

streetlawyer (169828) | more than 13 years ago | (#408180)

which is all that is required

No, the defence under DMCA is that it is permissible to cirumvent if you do so for the purpose of advancing knowledge of encryption. As is so often the case in law and so rarely the case in computing, intention matters. In any case, this is an appeal of a previous case in which that defence wasn't offered, so all your help would achieve would be to waste clerical time; this is something that can only benefit the side with more resources.

So what are you going to do? (1)

streetlawyer (169828) | more than 13 years ago | (#408181)

Well in that case, I think you should hole up in a shack in Montana, and prepare for the end times while you pack bags of fertilizer onto a Ryder truck. Seriously, if you're that serious about the doctrine of original intent, and if you think that it's at all possible to be certain of what the Constitution either "says" or "means", then your only real option is violent revolution. But, since we must consider the possibility that your revolution may fail, could you perhaps take a minute or two to look at the US Govt's amicus brief in this case and point out any technical errors which you are qualified to comment on?

Re:completely wrong (1)

sqlrob (173498) | more than 13 years ago | (#408183)

You're right. But kindly tell me what this has to do with DeCSS.

DeCSS does not in any way shape or form require distribution of any files it creates. If you want to be fair, simply prosecute the people that distribute the files, which is currently allowed under copyright law. No need whatsoever to invoke the draconian measures that the MPAA is using.

Re:Supreme Court should hear this case. (1)

PyRoNeRd (179292) | more than 13 years ago | (#408184)

There is an authorized Linux DVD player, called LinDVD [intervideo.com] from InterVideo, Inc. [intervideo.com] . Though currently only available to manufacturers as an evaluation. Since InterVideo also make WinDVD which is a consumer product they will no doubt make it available to consumers as well soon.

So the unavailability of a Linux DVD player is not an argument. Of course it isn't GPL but I doubt the judge would be swayed by that.

This sucks (1)

CaptainZapp (182233) | more than 13 years ago | (#408187)

Defendants publish a magazine for computer hackers, which "has included articles on such topics as how to steal an Internet domain name, access to other peoples e-mail, intercept cellular phone calls, and break into computer systems at Costco stores and Federal Express

Although this is factually right of course, it's an absolutely mean tactic to install the fear of god in the upright citizen.

I personally don't agree with stealing domain names or hacking e-mail. But what the &^$%^%*$%( has this to do with the issue at hand or the first ammendment ?

Absolutely right (you are) (1)

CaptainZapp (182233) | more than 13 years ago | (#408189)

It would be the same logic to bust the editor of the NYT because the paper reports that crack is sold at the top right corner of Central Park.

Hey, after all they linked to the possibility to commit a crime...

the World V the U.S. legal system (1)

The_Flames (184659) | more than 13 years ago | (#408191)

I like it how if the US legal system says something is ilegal,Then the rest of the world gets affected. If something is stopted like this or napster then they are gone as no-one else would challange the US over there laws.
Am I beeing correct in this line of thaught?

Re:Corley should drop the case (1)

KjetilK (186133) | more than 13 years ago | (#408192)

Hm, no, I can't agree. For civil disobedience to work, you need to fight and get into court every possible case you can get, get it as far as you can, and get it as early as you can. That's why it is important to get this through. And I really think it is a good case.

Only 9.99$ (1)

jawtheshark (198669) | more than 13 years ago | (#408194)

That's where pay-per-view drops in: I already see the commercials: "You're at work? You can't be there: the 'big game' for your enjoyment on HTDV, more real than in the stadium, and only for 9.99$" (in very small letters...pay per view, taxes not included, MPAA decriptor not included, may only be seen by one person at a time.)

long live the lobbyists (1)

Bender Unit 22 (216955) | more than 13 years ago | (#408200)

Long live the lobbyists, otherwise I completely fail to see how this could catch the attention and time of the U.S. Goverment.

As said in the Simpsons "I guess poor people just can't afford justice". Another reference could be: - Motto at courthouse (bg):"Liberty and Justice for most"

Oh well, maybe it's overdoing it a bit, but it does however seem to me that a rich dude would have a better chance of winning and that the U.S. justice system is more about money than justice. Just call me a troll if you must, but that is the impression that you get as an "outsider". Anyone agrees?
--------

Re:Again, is the effect inductive? (1)

Soruk (225361) | more than 13 years ago | (#408203)

The whole internet is supposedly within 7 hops of any page. It looks like the courts have just ruled the internet illegal.

Where does that leave the organisation (BT!) that holds the patent for links... like the creator of DeCSS maybe they should be done for creating the means to mreak the law....

This is what happens... (1)

kyz (225372) | more than 13 years ago | (#408204)

This is what happens when you install a man with a cabbage for a brain as President.

Congratulations, Americans! Your leader will now do whatever his daddy and his daddy's friends - corporations - tell him to do. You have a puppet leader, and he will do everything in his power to screw you.

Someone definately set up you the bomb, America.

Great (1)

mother_superius (227373) | more than 13 years ago | (#408208)

This dashed one of my major hopes about the court loss. I had always hoped that Kaplan was a nut, all alone is his blindness. But since the US govt is taking the side of the studios, a good portion of my hope is lost.

Since this violates the first amendment, wouldn't it take another amendment (2/3 Senate) to override the 1st amendment? Sorry if I misspelled/screwed up big time, but I am in a hurry before school.

Re:Big Brother has a nasty bite. (1)

RootPimp (230121) | more than 13 years ago | (#408210)

Count me in!!! Maybe we can pick up Isla Nublar from InGen pretty cheap, although we might have a slight pest problem.

Re:expected, but scary (1)

Bobo the Space Chimp (304349) | more than 13 years ago | (#408226)

The right to link will be preserved by the Supreme Court. It may be illegal to have a crack house on the corner, but it's not illegal for me to tell you there is a crack house on the corner, or how much they illegally sell drugs for inside.

Same Difference (1)

Henry Lightcap (306363) | more than 13 years ago | (#408227)

How is that any different? Shouting FIRE in a crowded place requires the action of others for bodily injury to be possible! If the people don't panic and run for the exit, then no one gets hurt...
Much like if you provide a link (shouting "here is DeCSS!") It requires the action of another to go and physically get the program.
So, your point was?

Disclaimer: This does not mean that I agree with the courts/gov/big business, but I'm sick of seing flawed logic on this site.

Sigs suck.

Re:And so it continues... (1)

ooze (307871) | more than 13 years ago | (#408229)

That is the main problem with all those limited liability structures. The property is not connected to responsibility anymore. Or do you think the Shell shareholders feel responsible for the things happening in Nigeria? Or the mnagement? Come on, they are hired bill jobbers. It may be a democratic background to seperate possesion and mangement, but this cripples or kills responsibility.

The one side feels not responsible for the actions of a company and the other side feels only responsible to the shareholders. And both sides have actually no clue whats going on. And the people with a clue have only seldom a chance to influence political decisions.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not for total control by the gouvernment, I just want to make people liable for things happening, so that they may remember that they are responsible for it.

Re:Mudslinging... (1)

vidarh (309115) | more than 13 years ago | (#408230)

I believe the best response would be to refer to the Larry Flynn case, and point out that the Supreme court has made exceedingly clear that however offensive someone find you or what you do is irellevant when considering whether what you have published in a specific instance under judicial scrutiny is illegal or not.

It doesn't matter if 2600 publishes things the DOJ or the judge doesn't like, or even if they publish stuff thats illegal, since the courts mandate is only to decide whether the linking to decss is legal or not.

Re:Corley should drop the case (1)

vidarh (309115) | more than 13 years ago | (#408231)

First of all, the DOJ doesn't decide whats constitutional or not, thats up to the courts. A brief from the DOJ tell only how the administration likes to interpret the law.

If anything, a ton of law professors disagree with them (see the amicus briefs submitted in support of 2600), as do a multitude of media organisations, dr's and other notabilities in the area of computer science, and several well respected organisations in support of free speech.

You may just dismiss their arguments out of hand - but there's no reason to view the DOJs arguments as any more valid just because they're from the DOJ. If you have specific reasons to believe the DOJs arguments more, why don't you state them, instead of pretending that it's obvious that Kaplan was right because the DOJ said so.

And your argument about everything being available elsewhere is blatantly wrong. I've several DVDs with material that is not commercially available in other forms. Including additional material included on many DVDs where the movie itself is available in other formats.

Re:Corley should drop the case (1)

khyron664 (311649) | more than 13 years ago | (#408232)

Unfortunately, I think the poster of this may be correct. Many people have said that the DeCSS case is a strong case, and for the most part I believe that. However, is it a strong case that will likely be ruled so? Probably not. As much as I hate to say it, I don't see Corley ever winning this case. Now it the gov't and big business against the little guy trying to get a law declared Unconstitutional and I don't think he has a prayer. The judges of these cases either don't understand the technology, are running scared because of the possible wrong uses, or flat out don't want to rule against big business. I would love to be wrong about this and if anyone can shoot me down please do so, but from what I see, Corley will lose all his appeals and this will set a legal precendence. I have yet to see the lightest bit of evidence that any judge has an understanding of the real issues involved in the case. So, in that regard, it doesn't seem the DeCSS case is a strong one in the sense he can win.

Someone please convince me otherwise as I'd really like to believe, but the more I read the more disheartened I become.

Khyron

Re:Development of Encryption Technology (1)

jpetzold (319053) | more than 13 years ago | (#408237)

hey!!!! the person who you are quoting in your sig is verbal from the usual suspects...SHEEESH

Linking is not distribution (2)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#408241)

If I link to goatse.cx, you don't have an ass pic until you--yes, you--follow the link.

If I link to DeCSS, you do not have DeCSS until you follow the link.

If I tell you that someone's selling cheap crack three blocks from you, you don't have crack until you go and buy it.
If I tell the police where the murderer is holed up, they still haven't caught him until they actually go and arrest him.

Question for you: the net is constantly changing. What happens if I post a link which right now contains pictures of someone's pet kitten, but which they later modify to contain the DeCSS source without my knowledge? Am I still responsible for the linked content?

linking is not speech (2)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#408242)

I'm sure all the slashdot folks will either moderate this poorly, or it'll get jumped on, because heaven forbid if someone out there thinks differently about this stuff...
Anyways... Sure linking is akin to distributing, that's what you're doing, plain and simple. The question we have to ask is: Is the right to free speech allowed when it directly infringes the rights of another? Sometimes yes. I know, people will say that there can be no exceptions, but if this argument was about linking to child pornography, there'd be no argument. No law can be absolute. And yes, many people will argue that we're just giving more power to the big bad giant multinationals, but tough. The law (if it works) doesn't differentiate against the little guy. Now, I will agree that in reality this often isn't the case, but you can blame the current state of the American legal system for that. Forcing people to pay for their own attorneys if they are sued... In many other countries, if you initiate a law suit and lose, you pay both sides legal fees...
In any case, I'm starting to ramble. Sorry.
I would like to hear some intelligent replies to this thread. Is linking to something that is not necessarily kosher alright?

Re:Corley should drop the case (2)

Masem (1171) | more than 13 years ago | (#408246)

If it's dropped now, and then we wait until copy protection is ubiquitious and present a stronger case, sure we'll have a better chance of winning.

However if we wait till then, copy protection controls WILL be ubiquitious. The US SC will state that the studios and hardware producers will need to remove or alter their hardware and software to allow fair use. How fast do you think RIAA, MPAA, and the others will move on this? They'll pull the Microsoft arguement then; the cost and time to 'fix' the problem will be huge, just like IE was so embedded in Windows that it couldn't be removed without great cost (a fallacy, I know, but...). Certainly people will have the option after such a decision to buy new equipment, but most people will not want to change, and some might even be 'brainwashed' by RIAA/MPAA and think that copy protection is the only way to fairly pay the artists.

In other words, if we wait for the next better case, it will be practically impossible to go back to how it is now without SDMI.

The DeCSS case is a very strong case, maybe not as strong for trying to remove provisions in the DMCA, but is very strong in terms of free speech in regard to linking, etc. However, it needs more lawyer-speak power, and I'm wondering if Lessig and other law professors that have stood out for 2600 and DeCSS aren't trying to figure out how to get onto this case.

Re:Linking isn't speech (2)

msuzio (3104) | more than 13 years ago | (#408257)

> I really can't see the justification for linking > as speech.

Then you effectively ban me saying to someone: "Hey, I hear you can pick up a hooker on 8 Mile and Woodward". I'm allowed to do that now under the Constitution -- but I'm not allowed to do the technical equivalent on the Web?

No way. If this decision stays as a piece of prior case law, I'm all in favor of taking up arms and staging another revolution.

(Oh, I'm allowed to say that too... Nice thing, free speech).

Good comment, senseless (-1) moderation (2)

Morgaine (4316) | more than 13 years ago | (#408258)

It strikes me that, perhaps, the US government has just about finished its transformation from a government of the people, by the people, and for the people into a government of the businesses, by the businesses, and for the businesses.

ClayJar's item seems both insightful and very nicely written. The fact that, as he says later, he's dismissed as a radical merely by mentioning that our freedoms are being usurped by big business really does highlight the key problem which underpins the whole DeCSS/MPAA and DMCA issue --- the majority of the public seems to be blindly accepting or oblivious of what's going on, and therefore government and big business can proceed with whichever agenda suits them best with impunity.

Yes, in what's allegedly a democracy, that's definitely the key problem.

Mistake to rely on courts and government (2)

Morgaine (4316) | more than 13 years ago | (#408261)

I suppose it's natural to be forever hopeful that the government of one's country is going to do the right thing for its citizenry, but if you remove the rose-tinted spectacles, that hope turns into wishful thinking.

Given the realities of the situation, the online community went about the DeCSS problem in the wrong way. Instead of hoping for sanity from the courts and government, dozens of alternative mechanisms should have been created by different groups, and made available as plugins.

This would allow generic players to be created and published safely on websites, supplied only with a plugin for accessing unencrypted content. Meanwhile, an unstoppable rain of alternative plugins would be available over Usenet.

Re:Again, is the effect inductive? (2)

PhilHibbs (4537) | more than 13 years ago | (#408262)

If I link to an "illegal" site, does that make my site "illegal" too? If so, what happens when you link to my site?
It depends. I think the pertinent criteria is intent. If it is demonstrable that your link is designed to helppeople get hold of copies of DeCSS, then you can be done for it. That's why google.com is not in violation, but a link to http://www.google.com/search?q=decss&btnG=Google+S earch [google.com] or whatever probably is. Note that I'm not making any right/wrong judgements here, just trying to inject some sanity in a world gone mad.

USA as Intervenor (2)

troyboy (9890) | more than 13 years ago | (#408267)

If someone claimed that one of your laws was unconstitutional, you'd intervene too! Notice that the brief only goes so far as to argue that the law is constitutional, not that the MPAA should win, or anything like that.

Re:HAve you contacted your Congressman (2)

Detritus (11846) | more than 13 years ago | (#408273)

We have Pat Schroeder telling us Libraries are a communist plot.... and narly a voice is heard from informed Open Sourced people.

Pat Schroeder is a Democrat. Therefore, she can do no wrong.

Remember kiddies...

Democrats GOOD
Republicans BAD

Mudslinging... (2)

maroberts (15852) | more than 13 years ago | (#408278)

..as others have pointed out; the government brief slings mud at the defendents which is not relevant to the issue at hand
i.e
Defendants publish a magazine for computer hackers, which "has included articles on such topics as how to steal an Internet domain
name, access to other peoples e-mail, intercept cellular phone calls, and break into computer systems at Costco stores and Federal
Express."


I think the defendents submissions should include some derogatory terms also, and I'd like some suggestions.

As a starter I propose:
Plaintiffs use the DMCA and associated copyright laws to fix absurdly high prices for their products ?

Re:Corley should drop the case (2)

maroberts (15852) | more than 13 years ago | (#408279)

After reading streetlawyers user info, I'm responding to this as a sincere post.

Whilst the opinion in the parent of this article was interesting, I don't think Corley should drop the case.

The plaintiffs have claimed that the primary purpose of DeCSS is to rip DVDs, which it isn't. In any case, at the time the case was bought, use of DeCSS was uneconomic.

DeCSS has made a GPL Linux DVD player possible; nothing else would have done so.

DVD is currently a minority format, but I predict within 5 years that tape will be dead or dying, replaced by one or more forms of random access media such as DVD, TiVo type devices etc.

Therefore I think we do have to fight now.

Re:Corley should drop the case (2)

cwilson (45570) | more than 13 years ago | (#408299)

The amateurish "according to my reading of the Constitution" analysis of people who don't know shit about the case law is embarrassing, unhelpful, and only raises the overall signal/noise ratio.

Well, yeah, us poor dumb hicks who don't know nuthin' 'bout bein' a fancy lawyer take a real exception to the whole concept of case law trumping the Constitution. It seems pretty obvious that it's real easy to build a road, one 'case law' brick at a time, that takes you from "Congress shall make no law...abridging the freedom of speech" to "Certain politically disapproved speech is not allowed in certain forums" to "Say what we allow you to say and don't say anything else"

And code isn't protected speech
Neither is email
Nor wireless transmissions
Nor any kind of digitally encoded data

And yes, it CAN happen here. "Are you now, or have you ever been, a member of the Communist Party?" "Identify your associates within that organization, and we'll go easy on you..."

Or, for a even more divisive example from today's news: from "the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed" to "five days later, maybe, but you can't take it with you anywhere---and be sure not to store it in such a way that it would actually be useful as protection against an intruder..."

It seems that on occaision, one MUST return to the core principles---"according to my reading of the Constitution..."---otherwise, the United States as a Constitutional Republic is doomed. One 'case law' brick at a time. If people can't be expected to understand their rights without a law degree, what good are they?

completely wrong (2)

Ender Ryan (79406) | more than 13 years ago | (#408307)

"The question we have to ask is: Is the right to free speech allowed when it directly infringes the rights of another?"

That is completely false, linking DOES NOT DIRECTLY infringe anything. Linking is telling someone where something is, nothing more. Further more, what RIGHTS are being infringed. DeCSS is a program that can be used for many things, and it is not even the best tool to use for "pirating" movies. Add to that the fact that copyright law today is completely unconstitutional in that in the constitution it allows for LIMITED (limited cannot mean longer than the average lifespan) copyright to FURTHER PROGRESS (NOT TO MAKE AS MUCH MONEY AS POSSIBLE FOR THE COPYRIGHT HOLDER!!!).

Linking is speech in code-terms [Rant] (2)

Steeltoe (98226) | more than 13 years ago | (#408309)

How can linking to criminal content not be speech when the only difference is that you click on it, instead of copy&paste it into the URL-box in the browser? Also the internals of HTML support this view. If code is speech, and HTML is code. Then how can a link-tag not be speech? If code isn't speech, then how can mathematic formulas be speech? The only difference is that one is procedural while the other is functional.

Basically, there are no fundamental grounds for banning linking. Linking is a quote, and a quote is a mentioning of something or someone. If you make linking to criminal content illegal, you logically also illegalize speaking about criminal activities, criminal sites and criminals, even reporting it.

Oh wait! I hear you now: INTENT. Intent is the keyword here. Somehow, the judges and juries are supposed to read the vict.. criminal minds. What a nice curtain to hide behind when you've lost the argument, isn't it? So after all this talking we still have to use violence to sort things out. Besides, it will win you another election if you start a war..

Does the means REALLY justify the ends, when nobody feels safe putting something on the "World Wide Web"? What was great about the Internet is surely lost to lust for more money and power anyone else can spend their lifetimes.

- Steeltoe

linking is not 'distribution' (2)

TheGratefulNet (143330) | more than 13 years ago | (#408313)

linking is equivalent to distributing banned content yourself

so by his thinking, if I link to a picture of a pot plant, its the same as distributing that same pot plant?

and the term "banned content". why does this just give me the shivvers?

--

just like last time (2)

SupahVee (146778) | more than 13 years ago | (#408314)

I think I may have said this the last time that the case was on the front page. But the New York Times linked to 2600, which had the list, the New York Times, also told that any person could go to yahoo, do a search for DeCSS, and find it that way.

I would love to see any piece of government try to take on the New York Times, for something that they printed. People don't think it's any big deal, just because it's some rag called 2600, and its run by those "evil hacker types". Bush seems to have wasted no time in putting pressure where his funding wants it to be. He's barely been in for a month, and we are pretty close to yet another war with Iraq. And our good buddy Ashcroft, who has "sworn to uphold the law" even if the law was flawed from the start. The DMCA is a royal pieve of horse-doo, and I don't doubt that it will get repealed, but my mind cannot fathom what damage will be done by corporations and our government until that time. A "Salem reverse-engineering Trial"? You can bet your ass, I'll be on the first bus to Canada when that happens, then I won't have to fight in Bush's pointless little war, either.

Re:The Real Meaning of this (2)

cyber-vandal (148830) | more than 13 years ago | (#408316)

Fair use cannot be stopped. Joe Public may not understand all the legal implications, but take away his ability to record the big game when he's at work and you'll get trampled in the rush to return HDTVs & DVD-Rs.

As long as we're talking about what might be.... (2)

Kibo (256105) | more than 13 years ago | (#408330)

The governments case, at least as I understood it, is that a plurality of people might use the information 2600 diseminated to steal the property of others. They might also use it to make a Open DVD authoring suite for linux, or BeOS, but they might use it to steal.

Most people shot with guns die, and its not usually legal. Maybe death seems worse than mabey theft. But I can go into any spy store and buy a set of lock picks so that's not the problem. Everyone who drives cars breaks a traffic law at one time or another, right? I don't think anyone really thinks this is about what's right or wrong. MPAA knows that control of the information at all levels (creation, distribution, and use) is what keeps them in business, and anyone else who interferes with them, be they hobbiest, a satanic penguin molester, or Joe Regular is a threat to their bottom line.

I would imagine event the woman prosecuting the case (Mary Jo White, (212) 637-2741) has a thought process something like this:

Wow! What a coup. MPAA is loaded like a Republican tavel agent at a fund raiser for Enron executives on a nuclear submarine. I bet they'll be plenty happy to bankroll my forthcomming campaign bid. And all this mana from heaven after I got all that good press for bitching about Clinton's pardon of Mark Rich. Oh Santa, I must have have been a good girl, thank you and a God bless everyone. Except of course for those heathen bastards who don't accept Christ as their personal savior and one true God of America (Democrats and commie pinko's); keep religion free!

FIN

If there's any truth to that "The enemy of my enemy is my friend" jive, then maybe Clinton deserves some major props for pardoning Rich.

In a way, how can one be surprised by this? Ammused I understand, but surprised? Naw.

However, I am somewhat curious as to exactly when America returned to an Oligarchy (tyranny of the few, the rich)? Government, particularly the American government, is not in place to serve the intrests of a select few. It's job is to serve the people by providing sanctuary for the unfettered exchange of ideas. I fail to see how this action can even pretend to work to that end. FDR was something of a socialist, and did a lot for returning government to the people. I can't see the idealism of the 60's being at fault. The deceite of the 70's, is that when we the people began to give our government away? Was the apathy of the 80's to blame? I'm interested to know when exactly we passed that critical point where we lost the balance of influence.

Implications for search engines... (2)

ip4noman (263310) | more than 13 years ago | (#408331)


So if distributing "harmful matter" (what Jello Biafra [alternativetentacles.com] was accused of) is criminal, or if distribiting DeCSS or other "infringing speech" is criminal, AND if creating a link to such a site is equivalent to the "crime" itself, what will become of search engines?

So, soon all the search engines will universally adopt the list of banned sites from BESS [bess.net] , Netnanny [netnanny.com] , etc., and then the net will be truly safe for children! Nothing controversial, no illegal speech, no forbidden speech, and we will all be using our cable modems to download live streams of Barney [nbnet.nb.ca] and Teletubbies [teletubbies.com] ...

QUICK! Grab all the Bill Hicks .mp3's .ra's and .rm's you can while it's still legal to give you this link!! http://www.sacredcowproductions.com/hicks/videos/i ndex.html [sacredcowproductions.com] (be sure to check out the "Positive Drug Story", it's a Hicks classic.)

Linking isn't speech (3)

volsung (378) | more than 13 years ago | (#408334)

I really can't see the justification for linking as speech. However, the worse issue is that when you link to a site, you have no control over the content of the site you linked to. If you become legally responsible for someone else's content when you link, you have big problems. The slippery slope gets ugly when you have to sort out whether the "intent" was to aid in the distribution of "illegal information" (a phrase that makes me shudder), whether search engines are responsible, and whether you can legally tell a search engine to avoid a known "bad" site.

Both parties equally bought and paid for (3)

FreeUser (11483) | more than 13 years ago | (#408337)

It is doubtful that the Bush folks would have put something like this just since the swearing in, or even since the election, since they were so distracted with other business.

This simply isn't true. Beurocracies chug along just fine during political transitions and have for the last century (at least). You are probably right in that the foundation was almost certainly laid under the Clinton administration, but you are wrong to assign innocence to the Bush administration.

Hollywood has its claws into both parties. Actors and Artists are typically in the Democratic camp, while Recording and Movie Executives are typically in the Republican camp. I say typically; there are obvious exceptions, such as Actor turned President Ronald Reagan. In any event Hollywood and the Copyright Cartels hold a great deal of influence over both parties.

Remember, it was a Republican congress who passed the DMCA into law, and a Democratic president who signed it.

Development of Encryption Technology (3)

maroberts (15852) | more than 13 years ago | (#408340)

Distribution of DeCSS certainly advanced my state of knowledge of encryption technology; so much so that I was able to understand from it how the encryption method worked and submit suggested improvements to the algorithm.

So how do I submit a paper contradicting the opinion in the Governement brief?

MPAA will probably win (3)

Kefaa (76147) | more than 13 years ago | (#408346)

I would have expected this in both the Clinton and Bush administrations. It is also very likely that 2600 will lose. MPAA chose an excellent target, a magazine which provides information to "hackers". Hackers who are typified to mom and dad as heroin addict looking individuals who are destroying their email, stealing from their bank accounts, and compromising national security for "fun".

Now, if we consider the simplest case where OS company "M" asks video card vendor "V" to stop anyone attempting to write a driver for another OS. Ingenious in a way that it would prevent anyone from expanding say OS "L" to include the newest technology.

We can add that anyone caught linking to the new "illegal" driver as guilty of a crime (based on the ruling above) and the rest is history... If you find this unlikely, consider your favorite video card and on which OS they sell the most. In the name of "quality" they want to ensure that only the best drivers, code, programs, data, links, etc. are available to their customers.

Now consider the experience level of the average PC user who has gotten 50 ILOVEYOU messages (and probably opened five), who do you think they will believe?

ALL YOUR BASE ARE BELONG TO US (3)

Pogue Mahone (265053) | more than 13 years ago | (#408347)

Here's something from the DMCA (as quoted in this article) that I didn't notice before:

"(A) is primarily designed or produced for the purpose of circumventing a technological measure that effectively controls access to a work protected under [the Copyright Act];

If a "technological measure" can be circumvented, there's no way it can be described as "effective".

Kill 'em with their own words. ;-)

PS Sorry about the subject line. Something must be interfering with transmission.


--

As much as the Usurper Annoys me ... (4)

FreeUser (11483) | more than 13 years ago | (#408349)

This is just the sort of ridiculous position I've come to expect from the US government, and with Bush in office I'm sure we can expect alot more "you scratch my back and I'll scratch yours" play with big corps.

As much as the Usurper annoys me, and as opposed to his notions as I am on several issues, it is IMHO unfair and inaccurate to imply that he will be engaged in any more quid-pro-quo money for politics behavior than his Democratic counterparts. The difference mainly lies in who the parties of the transaction will be (e.g. Big Oil vs. Big Law Firms), not the quantity of sleazy bargaining engaged in.

As far as this particular issue is concerned (Copyright Cartels stealing our rights through corrupt legislation bought and paid for), both parties are equally reprehensible. It was a republican congress that passed the bill, but a democratic president who eagerly signed it into law. The same is true for encryption and a number of other issues that concern technology folks BTW -- on the issues many of us really care about, there is no difference between the two major parties, and hence no real choice.

Re:Corley should drop the case (4)

nellardo (68657) | more than 13 years ago | (#408351)

and all the material you might want to use is available elsewhere.
but in fact, often it isn't. Most DVDs these days include extensive "Added Features!" These typically include:
  • The trailer(s) for the film itself (never on VHS, only trailers for other films the studio wants you to buy).
  • Alternate language soundtracks (often never released in the US - I mean, really, "South Park" in French is not on the shelves in Blockbuster in the US (maybe in Quebec, maybe not), but it is on the DVD).
  • Subtitles, both in other languages and for the hearing impaired (you can verify that line you can't quite hear, and oh, that's [rhythmic farting] during the "Uncle Fucker" song on "South Park").
  • Director's commentary (never on VHS).
  • Music-only soundtrack (never on VHS).
Now, add in the features you get on a better DVD release. How many of us bought a DVD player just to see all the groovy stuff they put on "The Matrix" DVD? I mean, you simply can't jump back and forth between behind-the-scenes and released footage on video - it's tape! it's linear!

Okay, I'm clearly getting overwrought :-) Time for some coffee and happy pills.

Re:This sucks (4)

Alien54 (180860) | more than 13 years ago | (#408353)

But what the &^$%^%*$%(has this to do with the issue at hand or the first ammendment ?

What is interesting is that there are books like The Anachists Handbook, that are printed legally in the USA. There is an interesting FAQ here [righto.com] . This passage is relevant:

Lyle Stuart (the auther)published the book (The Anachists Handbook) for a number of reasons. At the time Librarians across the US were being intimidated by the FBI and CIA who wanted to get names of people checking out books they felt were subversive. Lyle Stuart felt that publishing this book would make those efforts meaningless since people could simply buy the book without signing for it. Anyway Lyle did publish the book.

In my opinion the event of publishing the book was important. The contents are garbage. This was a very dangerous and brave publishing act for the 1960's.

People obviously do not want this info (found at 2600) spread around for reasons of their own profits. But somehow publishing on the internet is different than putting out a book?

HAve you contacted your Congressman (5)

MrBrklyn (4775) | more than 13 years ago | (#408354)

We really deserve everything we get. How many people sit in here whining about the violations of our rights under the guise of Copyright Protection, and then do NOTHING to influence Congress on the issue. We now have DMCA protected books critical to Dental Education which can be aquired only under a limited license for 180 days at a time. Our basic ability of read infomration is under attack by the printed publishers, using the DMCA as it's stick. We have Pat Schroeder telling us Libraries are a communist plot.... and narly a voice is heard from informed Open Sourced people. Where is the Open Source Lobby on capital hill? http://www.nyfairuse.org

Again, is the effect inductive? (5)

Black Parrot (19622) | more than 13 years ago | (#408356)

If I link to an "illegal" site, does that make my site "illegal" too? If so, what happens when you link to my site?

The whole internet is supposedly within 7 hops of any page. It looks like the courts have just ruled the internet illegal.

Ah, well. Free speech was a nasty ideal anyway. You could end up with people criticising their governments or something. Maybe even going so far as to criticise a corporation or a consortium.

--

Time for action... (5)

Noryungi (70322) | more than 13 years ago | (#408357)

Ladies and Gentlemen, I guess it's time for us to show where we stand on this question.

To do this, there are only two (legal) solutions I can think of:

Support the EFF [eff.org]
Support 2600 Magazine [yahoo.com]

Please do it now. I know I will.

And so it continues... (5)

ClayJar (126217) | more than 13 years ago | (#408358)

It strikes me that, perhaps, the US government has just about finished it transformation from a government of the people, by the people, and for the people into a government of the businesses, by the businesses, and for the businesses. Of course, since a corporation is a legal person in this country, perhaps they've just misplaced part of their heads.

The scary thing is that almost nobody sees what's going on. When those that do see the dangers have the audacity to talk about it, they are branded as conspiracy theorists et al. I can hardly put forward the idea that our freedoms are being usurped by big business before I'm dismissed as a radical. If eternal vigilance is indeed the price of freedom, I'm afraid that the days of freedom are limited. Perhaps there are still many left, but at the rate we're progressing, we're getting dangerously close to the point where nothing short of a full-fledged revolt will have any chance at producing change.

We're precipitously close to an Orweillian society run, not by governments, but by big businesses who all but own the governments. If such a dystopia comes in to power, I'm afraid it may be extremely difficult to break the bonds of socio-economic tyrrany. At our current progress, such a system will at the very least attempt to take over; I can only hope that we can work fast enough and be strong enough to topple it in its infancy.

expected, but scary (5)

Alien54 (180860) | more than 13 years ago | (#408359)

I guess it is expected that the US gov would enter a brief on the side of big business, but in this case it is slightly disturbing. heck, it is plainly disturbing.

These Things take a while to prepare, so I wonder if this is something that was developed under the Clinton Administration, and then now has the blessing of the Bush. It is doubtful that the Bush folks would have put something like this just since the swearing in, or even since the election, since they were so distracted with other business.

This then presents the picture of both political parties supporting the people with deep pockets. Again not unexpected. But upsetting, since you would hope that *someone* was not corrupt.

This separate from the merits of the debate to begin with.

That's exactly the point (5)

CaptainZapp (182233) | more than 13 years ago | (#408360)

can certainly use it as a judgement against their moral character pertaining to anything else they can get 'em on. If the defendants look like bad guys to the general public then they must be bad guys.

It's the same tactic as sleazy ambulance chasers use in rape cases.

Jury, look at this women: she drinks, she hangs around bars and she dresses in skimpy skirts. Dear jury: Anybody can see that she actually wanted it

The strategy is to get somebody convicted (or vice versa) simply on moral grounds which are not whatsoever related to the cause

This, in my book is blattant abuse of the judical system.

Could it be possible... (5)

Syllepsis (196919) | more than 13 years ago | (#408361)

...that free speech and intellectual property are mutually incompatible in a society where people speak in a language such as html.

I think that it is clear: A Corporate Republic will always choose IP, a Democracy will choose freedom. Enjoy the extra 0.0004 cents squelching DeCSS just might bring to shareholder dividends in a few years. You will not be able to link (speak, what's the difference?) freely because of it.

Supreme Court should hear this case. (5)

theDigitizer (239913) | more than 13 years ago | (#408362)

The core fundamental defense that 2600 has on its side is the fact that DeCSS is a player for Linux boxes, where there was no player provided by the industry. The MPAA didn't believe that Linux was an "authorized" system for use of their property.

That is why this case should keep going straight to the Supreme Court, where they will reaffirm the fair use doctrines, since after all, it is not illegal that you use whatever player you wish. Truly, it is the movie industry with their DVD region coding, and their "authorized player/use" that violates fair use and infringes on the rights of the users

Regarding the DMCA, I would have to say that I hate this legislation. It was done quickly, and with little regard for the actual consumer and rights of individuals. It's doubtful that the Supreme Court could overturn the DMCA based on this case. We will have to wait for another case that clearly infringes on the rights of the consumer(and believe me, it will come), and uses the DMCA as the wonderful law that is being broken in the case. Until then, we should find ways in which to use content within fair use, and wait to be challenged by the powers that be. Then we'll take them to the top.

The time has passed (5)

Prophet of Doom (250947) | more than 13 years ago | (#408363)

The US legal system was siezed by corporate interests quite some time ago. The branch of government that was supposed to be beyond corruption, above all others, is now no more than a glorified legal team for its corporate benefactors. Decisions like this one only serve to reinforce that thinking.

Someone who posted earlier wrote that all of the amateurish "as I read the first amendment" interpretations of the Constitution are meaningless. While I'm sure that the sentence wasn't intended to be a commentary on the state of our country, it actually is an excellent observation. Our views, the views of average citizens, no longer matter. The only views given any consideration are those that come from a source that can provide something in trade for that consideration. Be it campaign contributions, consulting fees, a partnership, whatever, you must have something to offer if you wish to be heard.

Sadly we have no one to blame but ourselves for the current state. We have allowed these circumstances to envelop us one small step at a time. We have done very little to become actively involved determining the direction of our country. Our freedoms have fallen slowly, often for the 'greater good'. Each one brought us closer to today. We look at issues one by one: copyright violations, reverse engineering, hate speech, guns, privacy violations. Each one of these is examined individually, often in times of crisis (the RIAA says "They're stealing our music!"), and a decision is made without really understanding how it might effect the rest of our lives.

I'm not sure of the solution to this problem. Far too many place far too much stock in the word of the mainstream media. That media presents stories in such a way that moves public opinion in the direction they choose, they have had years of practice. The common citizen needs to wake up and see the direction we are heading with each of our choices. Only then can we begin to right the system that has strayed of our course.

Hmmmm... (5)

ooze (307871) | more than 13 years ago | (#408364)

No person shall manufacture, import, offer to the public, provide, or otherwise traffic in any technology, product, service, device, component, or part thereof, that --

  • (A) is primarily designed or produced for the purpose of circumventing a technological measure that effectively controls access to a work protected under [the Copyright Act];
  • (B) has only limited commercially significant purpose or use other than to circumvent a technological measure that effectively controls access to a work protected under [the Copyright Act]; or
  • (C) is marketed by that person or another acting in concert with that person with that person's knowledge for use in circumventing a technological measure that effectively controls access to a work protected under [the Copyright Act].

alternative:

No person shall manufacture, import, offer to the public, provide, or otherwise traffic in any technology, product, service, device, component, or part thereof, that --

  • (A) is primarily designed or produced for the purpose of circumventing a legal measure that effectively allws access to a work protected under [the Copyright Act];
  • (B) has only commercially significant purpose or use to circumvent a legal measure that effectively allows access to a work protected under [the Copyright Act]; or
  • (C) is marketed by that person or another acting in concert with that person with that person's knowledge for use in circumventing a legal measure that effectively allows access to a work protected under [the Copyright Act].
  • And you are definitely allowed to make a copy of any content for personal use. And you are definitely allowed to watch any content whereever you are. And silly DVD region codes and encryption is attempted to prevent both. Just imagine you are not allowed to read an original Shakespeare in a non English speaking country. There are so many movies on DVD only available in one region code. Or you are not allowed to cite from a book, as this is prevented by a copy protection.

    That commercial thing just should not be the base of every decision. This gonna be much more dangerous than any cracking tool. This type of content protection is even used in agriculture! There are manipulated cereals that only germ if they are treated with some chemicals only available from the seeds company!

Re:Linking isn't speech (5)

vidarh (309115) | more than 13 years ago | (#408365)

I'll show you justification....

http://slashdot.org/

The above isn't a link. It is just a URL. It's trivial to automatically make a link of it, though. Something many systems and applications (such as gnome-terminal) do automatically.

Should that be considered linking, or speech?

What about "You can find it on Slashdot". Is that linking, or speech? It would be trivial with gnome-terminal for instance to define a regex that matches any such reference, and creates links to slashdot.org/.net/.com.

The effect is the same. And with the help of applications, it will in many cases be indistinguishable for the end user.

The critical part is that if you are legally obligated not to link to sites containing illegal material, many will not dare link at all, since a site may change at any point, and it may be impossible for you to prove later that the illegal material weren't there when you linked.

Also, for you Americans, your courts has time and time again defended news sources rights to publish material that was either aquired by illegal means (the Pentagon papers spring to mind), or to paraphrase libelous material or other material where the original publication was deemed illegal, because censoring it would prevent the free dissemination also about criticism about the work.

What if free sale of Mein Kampf were forbidden, as it is in Germany (you can get hold of it, but you are required to have a "legitimate" interest in it, for instance for research purposes), and you were not allowed to quote even to illustrate your arguments against nazism? It would strike not only the publishers of the book and those supporting it, but also those opposing the banned work.

In this case the work in question has been deemed illegal by the lower court. And even those opposing it and it's use will risc breaking the law if they link to it even for the purpose of illustrating what they are talking about.

Linking in this respect is akin to quoting, or to giving an ISBN number, or tell that "you can go to that store, and they will have it", all of which is legal.

The really interesting part of this, is that judge Kaplans justification for banning the linking is so thin that there's a good chance a printed newspaper could publish all the links it wanted to decss without the risc of any repercussions, while a website can not (at least not in the form of an actual link).

But the real issue here is that the court is trying to censor what should be protected speech - the decss program itself.

Gov vs 2600 (5)

OpenSezMe (311686) | more than 13 years ago | (#408366)

Mark Twain was right, we have the Best Governement Money can Buy.
Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>