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Projectionists Using Night Vision Goggles in Theaters

michael posted about 10 years ago | from the sneak-and-peek dept.

Movies 1080

sam0ht writes "Los Angeles police arrested Ruben Centero Moreno, 34, after the projectionist used night vision goggles to spot his video camera in a showing of The Alamo. He has been charged under the new California anti-camcorder law, and could face up to 1 year in jail if convicted. The BBC reports that 'The MPAA has established a nationwide telephone hotline for cinema employees to report violations, and studios and cinemas are also investing in metal detectors and night-vision goggles'. Motion Picture Ass. Head Jack Valenti said he hoped it would 'send a clear signal such crimes will not be tolerated'. Clearly, the 'War on Copyright Violation' is following the successful strategy used for the War on Drugs, with significant resources of technology and police time mobilised to send violators to jail for a long time. Soon, copied films will be as rare as students lighting up a joint after their exams." The lesson is clear: stay out of movie theaters and you won't get arrested.

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Beautiful. (5, Funny)

American AC in Paris (230456) | about 10 years ago | (#8868928)

From this day forward, I shall refer to Jack Valenti as "Motion Picture Ass Head". Thank you, sam0ht.

Re:Beautiful. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8868957)

That's too funny. Beat me to it. :)

Re:Beautiful. (5, Funny)

sfled (231432) | about 10 years ago | (#8868988)

The position itself will be "Motion Picture Ass." head. The Ass.'s current head is Mr. Valenti. Or current head of the Ass., if you prefer.

Re:Beautiful. (4, Funny)

zoward (188110) | about 10 years ago | (#8869016)

LOL - It reminds me of one of my favorite Dilbert cartoons, in which the Pointy Haired Boss tells his secretary that his title is "Director Of Product Enhancements", and to stop referring to him using the acronym... ...to which she replies, "I didn't know you were Director Of Product Enhancements".

so true (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8869030)

That's hilraious. On a quick read, I thought that's what it said! (still early for me)

Re:Beautiful. (0)

teamhasnoi (554944) | about 10 years ago | (#8869148)

One of the first times I laughed at a story. Wish that there was one for the RIAA, like:

Bradley A. Buckles, Former Head of the ATF is now Director In Charge of Kopyrights.

D.I.C.K.head Bradley A. Buckles.

It doesn't roll off the tongue very well...

GNAA + Night Vison (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8868936)

ghey sex any time of the day or night!

So? (5, Insightful)

Oculus Habent (562837) | about 10 years ago | (#8868942)

To put it simply: Good

Taking a camcorder into a theater is breaking the law. If they can spot people with night vision goggles, that's great. They shouldn't be doing it.

Completely setting the MPAA aside, this is blatant copyright violation. It's clearly prohibited, and no one can reasonably feign ignorance on this. How many people reasonably take the camcorder for purely personal viewing with no intent to distribute the copy?

If it's for personal viewing, they can wait, spent $4 more, buy the DVD, and be legal.

Re:So? (0, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8869049)

NOO! Don't you understand? The MPAA is evil and stopping people from committing a crime in a public place is a blatant invasion on our privacy!

Re:So? (5, Insightful)

drmike0099 (625308) | about 10 years ago | (#8869050)

Amen, you beat me to posting this. If anything, this is exactly what we want the MPAA to be spending its time and resources combating, not running around trying to get laws passed that prohibit legitimate fair use. These are the people that cost them actual money, and if they could shut them down, they would no longer be able to show that piracy is causing them so much damage that they need ridiculous legal protections that screw over people like you and me. Thank god they're doing this.

Re:So? (5, Insightful)

mahdi13 (660205) | about 10 years ago | (#8869058)

I agree, why are people getting upset about someone going to jail for breaking the law?
sam0ht seems to be a bit irate over this for some reason...if you are going to break a law, don't bitch when you get busted!
If you drive your car over the speed limit and get a ticket, it's not the cops fault.
If you do drugs and your parents catch you, it's not their fault
If you have sex in a public place and you get arrested for indecency, it's not the police's fault.

"If you do the crime, you better be prepared to do the time"

Terrible news. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8869117)

I just heard some sad news on talk radio - USA-backed dictator Saddam Hussein was found dead in his Guantanamo cage this morning. There weren't any more details. I'm sure everyone in the Slashdot community will miss him - even if you didn't enjoy his work, there's no denying his contributions to popular slaughtering. Truly an American icon. God bless :(

Re:So? (2, Insightful)

Your_Mom (94238) | about 10 years ago | (#8869143)

Exactly, just like if you're going to bypass CSS encryption, it's not the DVD company's fault.

There are lots of ways to look at breaking the law, you can break laws as an act of civil disobedience, although I can almost guarentee this is not the case for this story.

Re:So? (5, Informative)

idesofmarch (730937) | about 10 years ago | (#8869059)

It does not matter if the recording is for personal viewing or for distribution. You still do not have a license to record the movie. Your ticket gives your the right to watch the movie once in that theater at that time, and that is all.

Re:So? (4, Insightful)

RT Alec (608475) | about 10 years ago | (#8869084)

I agree. This is not the battle to fight, it is a clear cut case of breaking the law. If this is where the MPAA wants to direct their resources, so be it.

Re:So? (4, Insightful)

cgranade (702534) | about 10 years ago | (#8869094)

That may be, but one may feel (as I do) that perhaps if it is such a big deal, the police ought to be the ones taking action, not vigilantes from the MPAA, and that perhaps a year of jail time does not fit the offense. So MPAA lost a couple hundred dollars in profit. Boo-hoo. Mayhaps a fine would work just as well, then? As it is, this strikes me as another minor crime that lawmakers have overinflated, filling our prisions at taxpayer's expense. Look at the cost of keeping someone in prision for a year, and compare that to the amount that MPAA might have lost from this offense.

Now, note that I'm not defending this guy, but rather making the point that there's a serious problem with scale here. If things like this really mattered to lawmakers, wouldn't Ken Lay be in jail? He hasn't seen a day of jail time from the Enron scandals. I guess the moral is, then, only screw those people without the money to defend themselves. That was this guy's big mistake...

Re:So? (5, Interesting)

Xepo (69222) | about 10 years ago | (#8869096)

Yes, it is good that they caught them. That's a good thing, most people on here would agree.

What we disagree with is the fact that they're enforcing copyright violations as if it's drugs, or terroristic activities, or whatever. Putting someone *in jail* for filming a movie for "a long time" is what I disagree with. I don't think they should even go to jail, that's too harsh for a copyright violation. Simply slap them with a large fine, and be done with it.

It's very similar to slashdot's general attitude towards malevolent hackers. We don't think it's right that someone is spreading a virus, or cracking into systems, and defacing a web site, but we also don't think it's right that these people are being punished like they killed someone.

Re:So? (1)

TwistedGreen (80055) | about 10 years ago | (#8869125)

Obviously this guy is breaking the law. But the point is that this can easily get out of control. Do you want to have to pass a metal detector to watch the movie you paid to see? Because I sure don't.

Re:So? (1, Insightful)

WIAKywbfatw (307557) | about 10 years ago | (#8869132)

I have issue with this law as it stands. Taking a camcorder into a cinema shouldn't be illegal, what should be illegal is taking it in and using it to record the film being screened.

If I visit New York as a tourist, camcorder in hand, and decide to go to the movies on the spur on the moment I shouldn't be treated as a criminal because of something that may be at the bottom of my backpack.

Some people might consider that scenario to be unlikely, or one that is avoidable, but what do you want to bet that the legislation as it's worded covers all equipment capable of recording video, including laptops, PDAs and even video mobiles? Do we really want to make criminals of anyone who has a mobile phone in their pocket?

Exactly (1)

dolo666 (195584) | about 10 years ago | (#8869141)

And just think of all the Pee Wee Hermans out there who will avoid doing nasty-assed things in public, now that they know they could be seen and arrested. I bet quite a few more people engauge in heavy sexual activity in theatres than we'd suspect.

DVDs aren't that expensive anymore... it's worth it to buy a movie rather than even rent one, if you know it's a good film. Plus you avoid late fees (and I've paid likely thousands of dollars in those over the years!!!)

I strongly disagree with the MPAA and RIAA's tactics in general, but I do believe that movies recorded in theatres should be stopped because they are low quality!!

Re:So? (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8869146)

In Nazi Germany, gassign Jews was legal.

Re:So? (2, Interesting)

Eagle5596 (575899) | about 10 years ago | (#8869155)

This is where Slashdot really ticks me off sometimes. Yes a lot of us (myself included) choose to copyleft our works, instead of copyrighting them. However, this doesn't mean everyone else is obligated to do so. Taking a camcorder into a movie theater is wrong, plain and simple. People laid down a serious investment into making the movie, and if you think it is too much, then wait for it to come out on video, don't steal it through the use of a camcorder in the theater.

Further more, hey Michael, what's with the comment, huh? The lesson isn't to "stay out of movie theaters", it is, quite simply, DON'T STEAL! If you come into a bank and try and rob it, and get busted, the lesson is not "stay out of banks", but "don't rob banks". Do you truly think people should just give everything to you Michael? Then perhaps you should just donate your time to your job, huh? I have friends who work for special effects companies in the movie industry, and yes it is an industry. It's about producing something that people want to buy. If you don't buy it, and see it illegally, you're stealing.

Grow up guys, and learn to respect the rights of others. The responsible thing to do is either pay for the movie, or don't see it. If a movie comes out that I think I might want to see, but don't want to pay $8 for it, I wait for it to come out on video, and then pick it up from the local video store on their two for $0.99 tuesday deal. At under $0.50 for a show, split amongst five people, I don't think there is a pricing problem here at all. This isn't even like the software industry where they charge $300 per copy. I pay less than $0.10 to view a movie, and I'll gladly do that any day.

I wish that the readers and submitters here would learn to respect other people's hard work, and that the editors, and Michael in particular, would keep their editing professional and not post idiotic comments that have no bearing on the substance of the article, and no basis in reality.

Re:So? (3, Interesting)

jefe7777 (411081) | about 10 years ago | (#8869164)

you probably won't have much disagreement about the action in question being illegal.

but I imagine many will question the penalty.

so under 3 strikes, an 18 year old goes to prison for a very long time, if caught 3 times?

Yeah...right (4, Funny)

Gr33nNight (679837) | about 10 years ago | (#8868954)

I bet the projectionist was making his own copy of the film and didnt want competition!

Projectionist = Centropy asshat customer = FTF

I found the number (5, Funny)

thebra (707939) | about 10 years ago | (#8868960)

'The MPAA has established a nationwide telephone hotline for cinema employees to report violations'

Cam? (5, Insightful)

lofoforabr (751004) | about 10 years ago | (#8868973)

In fact, I rarely get any camera recorded movies, because of the usual low quality.
Don't we all love TeleSync and (even better), DVD-Screeners?
IMHO, camera recorded movies aren't all that worth the download, are they?

Hahahaha (3, Funny)

Alranor (472986) | about 10 years ago | (#8868975)

Soon, copied films will be as rare as students lighting up a joint after their exams"

Because we all know that the war on drugs has completely eradicated the evil scourge that is marijuana use ....


Re:Hahahaha (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8869101)

Note to self, explaining the jokes gets you modded up.

Re:Hahahaha (1)

Otter (3800) | about 10 years ago | (#8869114)

I believe that line was intended to be read sarcastically.

On the other hand, I also believe Michael's addendum was entirely sincere stupidity, so who knows?

Re:Hahahaha (1)

flyneye (84093) | about 10 years ago | (#8869169)

personally i light up before the exam.
maybe someone at the MPAA should stick one in their Ass. and light it.

yes, the message is clear... idiot. (3, Insightful)

garcia (6573) | about 10 years ago | (#8868978)

The lesson is clear: stay out of movie theaters and you won't get arrested.

How about stay out a movie theatre with recording equipment, night vision goggles, and/or the intention of stealing stuff... Perhaps then you won't get arrested.

Re:yes, the message is clear... idiot. (1)

hackstraw (262471) | about 10 years ago | (#8869077)

The lesson is clear: stay out of movie theaters and you won't get arrested.

I would bet that the number of people arrested each year outside of movie theaters is much greater than the number arrested inside of them. gheesh.

You're the idiot (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8869134)

the goggles were used to bust the person. Nobody needs the name calling, you dumb ninny.

Re:yes, the message is clear... idiot. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8869153)

For the last time, filming a movie is NOT STEALING. Get a clue, you moron.

You missed the message (4, Insightful)

duffbeer703 (177751) | about 10 years ago | (#8868983)

If you don't film the movie with a camcorder, you will not be dragged off to prison from the theatre.

Does anyone honestely believe that this is a privacy issue?

Re:You missed the message (1)

adamontherun (660770) | about 10 years ago | (#8869071)

And I thought the message was to stay home and smoke weed wit Jack Valenti instead of going to the theater.


Re:You missed the message (1)

MrNonchalant (767683) | about 10 years ago | (#8869098)

Well, I would prefer projectionists not be able to see what myself and my girlfriend are up to. Yes, she actually exists. No, she is not imaginary.

Re:You missed the message (2, Funny)

hackstraw (262471) | about 10 years ago | (#8869122)

If you don't film the movie with a camcorder, you will not be dragged off to prison from the theatre.

Does anyone honestely believe that this is a privacy issue?

Yes, its clearly a violation of one's privacy to be in a public place, commit a crime (or even just break the rules of the public place like smoke, drink, etc), and get punished for it.

I guess the lesson isn't that clear after all... (2, Insightful)

ptomblin (1378) | about 10 years ago | (#8868984)

The lesson is clear: stay out of movie theaters and you won't get arrested.

Uh no, the lesson is don't fucking steal, dipwad.

Yay (3, Insightful)

Omnifarious (11933) | about 10 years ago | (#8868985)

An excellent use of technology to catch a criminal. The contract for entering a movie theatre is clear about not having recording devices or food. It was so obviously wrong that even a projectionist had no qualms about wearing some night vision goggles to notice someone with a camera and eject them. This doesn't even need to invoke copyright law to be considered wrong.

Re:Yay (1)

Kierthos (225954) | about 10 years ago | (#8869107)

I have absolutely no problem with them busting people who are stupid enough to take camcorders into theatres. (I have to wonder how none of the employees noticed it before it was in use...)

Has anyone ever been arrested for sneaking food into a theatre though? Personally, I doubt it... most they'd probably do is chuck you out for not buying their overpriced snacks or the bucket of ice with a drizzle of soda in it.

Frankly, the idiot is getting what he deserved.


Really? (2, Funny)

ideatrack (702667) | about 10 years ago | (#8868990)

Soon, copied films will be as rare as students lighting up a joint after their exams.

Really? That prevalent? The rest of the article makes it sound like it's going to become quite rare.

Re:Really? (1)

MoonBuggy (611105) | about 10 years ago | (#8869152)

I thought that too, but then I'm not in the US and it continually suprises me hearing how conservative many (although I know not all) Americans are (Janet Jackson incident as a prime example) so I guess it's quite probably that soft drug use in the US is considerably rarer than here in the UK.

The Lesson (2, Insightful)

jaaron (551839) | about 10 years ago | (#8868994)

The lesson is clear: stay out of movie theaters and you won't get arrested.

The lesson is clear: don't be stupid and take a video camera into a movie theatre.

The Alamo?? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8869000)

Given its box office figures, surely piracy of "The Alamo" is the least of a studio's worries?

nls (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8869001)

Novell* Licensing Services (NLS) helps you manage licensed software on your Novell network.
NLS consists of License Service Providers (LSPs), License Container objects, License Certificate objects, and NLS clients. Also, NLS provides libraries that export licensing functionality to developers of other licensing systems.
NLS is tightly integrated with NDS through LSPs and other system components that reside on NetWare* servers.
In general, client workstations don't require special software. Licensing-enabled applications communicate with NLS servers (called License Service Providers) by using .DLL or .NLM files that are installed on NetWare servers.

NLS requires NetWare 4.11, NetWare 4.2, NetWare for Small Business, or NetWare 5.
For background information about NLS as a licensing service, refer to www.novell.com/documentation; click Novell Licensing Services.

* Novell trademark. ** Third-party trademark. For more information, see Trademarks.

Big ol Flashlight. (5, Funny)

Deflagro (187160) | about 10 years ago | (#8869002)

So would they mind if you brought a massive flashlight with you?
That way when the fools with the night vision are peeping around, just turn on the flashlight quickly and listen for the scream.
Although, if they had metal detectors, that would foil my evil plan.

Re:Big ol Flashlight. (1)

iainl (136759) | about 10 years ago | (#8869112)

Forget the poor guy with night vision, though. Top of the list for screaming is the arsehole with someone's fist in their face. Its the least they deserve if they are going to piss off the entire audience with their 'clever' flashlight antics during the film.

rare? (0, Redundant)

56ksucks (516942) | about 10 years ago | (#8869010)

"Soon, copied films will be as rare as students lighting up a joint after their exams."

Since when is this rare?

War on Drugs? (4, Insightful)

mwhahaha (172475) | about 10 years ago | (#8869013)

Anyone else think the comparison with the War on Drugs is a bit much? Especially when the War on Drugs has been touted as a failure by many people for it's over spending and inability to really curb the influx of drugs into this country. So does that mean the MPAA is just going to blow tons of money and fail to get anything done? Maybe it's just me...

Arms race (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8869015)

Couldn't you just flash your spotlight briefly at the beginning of the showing, effectively blinding anyone wearing night vision?

Asinine comments (2, Insightful)

PorscheDriver (698772) | about 10 years ago | (#8869017)

The lesson is clear: stay out of movie theaters and you won't get arrested

er... no. Let's try:

The lesson is clear: don't record films in movie theaters using a camcorder and you won't get arrested

Welcome to Slashdot, would Sir like a knee-jerk reaction?

In other news.. (3, Insightful)

JusTyler (707210) | about 10 years ago | (#8869020)

The lesson is clear: stay out of movie theaters and you won't get arrested.

If you like getting into your car and driving around at 100mph, you might be arrested. Ah well, the lesson is clear: stay out of cars, and you won't get arrested!

I'm all for jumping over privacy invasions and the ever domineering power of the state, but cracking down on things which are blatantly illegal isn't a violation of our freedom.

Subliminal caption? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8869021)

Motion Picture Ass. Head Jack Valenti

Seems oddly appropriate, now doesn't it?

So the original submitter.. (1, Insightful)

bob670 (645306) | about 10 years ago | (#8869023)

thinks it's okay to bootleg movies, even poorly? Christ, get some standards, you can't steal everything you want. It might be an extreme method but as long as you aren't going to jail who cares? Easy solution, if material is released under a copyright or trademark that includes criminal charges if violated, don't F'in steal it! Not everyone wants to give away their work for free and you have no right to chose for them.

Leakes (2, Insightful)

Manip (656104) | about 10 years ago | (#8869024)

Most of the illegal films on the internet are from within the movie industry it's self, although this will help reduce the number of 'cam' films being shared around, it will not help reduce over-all piracy.

Honestly, I have no good suggestions beyond giving up on cinemas and just release everything on DVD ASAP to reduce piracy. Thing is, people want the media, and they want it right now... and until the industry catches up with what people want this is going to continue.

Re:Leakes (1)

DrewBeavis (686624) | about 10 years ago | (#8869066)

Yeah, they arrested a guy who was borrowing screeners from a producer and bootlegging them for the internet. I guess they needed this case to overshadow the arrest of one of their own...

So, what's wrong with protecting your IP? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8869027)

I can't wait for the slew of "MPAA guys are jerks. and the law is eveil." posts. Why does it seem like most of the slashdot crowd has no respect for copyrights? I can't image any interpretation of "Fair use" that includes taking a moving camera into a theater.

The guy broke the law and got caught.

Slashdot: News for trolls. Stuff that's biased. (4, Insightful)

LostCluster (625375) | about 10 years ago | (#8869031)

From the /. write-up...
Motion Picture Ass. Head Jack Valenti
Was "Association" or even "Assoc." was too much to type there?

The lesson is clear: stay out of movie theaters and you won't get arrested.
Uhm, how about "Don't take video cameras into movie theaters and you won't get arrested?" They're not arresting random patrons, just the ones who are caught making illegal copies.

From the linked Register piece...
You've been out at the beach all day and you met a friend in a bar who says she is going to take in a film. You join her and caught up in the conversation and don't notice some of the new signs up at the cinema. Suddenly someone wants to search your back pack and the next thing you know you're in prison for a one year stretch for taking the camcorder which you forgot was in your pack, into a cinema. The $2,500 fine isn't funny either.
That's not the California law. The law requires that the camcorder operator demonstrate an intent to copy the movie. I don't quite see how you can accidently aim a camcorder at the movie screen and turn it on. Somebody "caught in the act" is clearly demonstrating intent, while somebody who has the camcorder off an in their backpack is clearly not.

The law has been written with future technologies in mind and can equally apply to any type of recorder, including a mobile phone. So in California at least it is soon going to be illegal to take your phone into the cinema.
Again, only if you're intent on copying the film. Don't aim your phone at the screen and hit record and you'll be fine. Besides, does anybody have a camera phone with two to three hours of memory?

Better than being an asshat (1)

stealthmidget (761031) | about 10 years ago | (#8869035)

"Motion Picture Ass. Head Jack Valenti said he hoped it would 'send a clear signal such crimes will not be tolerated'."

Suppose it's better than being an asshat.

Soon in a theatre near you (0, Flamebait)

tgv (254536) | about 10 years ago | (#8869036)

It won't be long before people such as Ruben will be rightfully called terrorists and it'll be forbidden to make movies at home, just in case you were planning to re-enact some copyrighted scene at home.

Next time.. (4, Interesting)

telemonster (605238) | about 10 years ago | (#8869045)

Next time the camcorderist should sit in the upper right or upper left part, that way he can't be seen.

Somehow, I just don't see these crappy video CD and DivX distributions of zero day movies a threat to their profits. Sure, bored kids with no money might sit at home wasting hours downloading them but anyone with income to afford the DVD copy will most likely buy it.

Wasn't it Europe where the movie industry wanted to stop text messaging because people were messaging each other and giving advice as to which movies sucked, which supposidly undermined the advertising campaign that overhypes crap?

Just like software piracy, some 14 year old running 3dStudio Max on mom's PC is not a loss in profits.

The movie is complete crap anyway (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8869046)

Good grief. I think in this instance that recording The Alamo and putting it on the net for download is the only way people would actually watch this horrible movie. It's not like they are going to lose more money on this absolute dog. It cost $140 million to make and made back a whopping $9 million at the box office. Pirating this movie is probably good for it.

Joints after Exams (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8869048)

"Soon, copied films will be as rare as students lighting up a joint after their exams."
Apparently Mr. Ass Head hasn't been on a college campus in a while. Is that really a good comparison that you want to use?

saw this first hand (5, Interesting)

pojo (526049) | about 10 years ago | (#8869055)

I run a college movie group [rochester.edu] that sometimes does sneak previews of upcoming films. I was blown away when I heard that for our most recent preview (Gothika, total crap btw) they wanted to bring in night vision goggles. They wound up basically frisking everyone that came in too, and even turned away kids with cameras in their cell phones. The people who got in didn't actually seem to mind the search that much, they kind of understood. Nonetheless, it was the first time we had a major external security force at one of our screenings.

The War on Drugs has been successful? (1)

stinkyfingers (588428) | about 10 years ago | (#8869057)

If the 'War on Copyright Violation' is ultimately as successful as the 'War on Drugs', I may never have to pay for a piece of copyrighted material ever again.

The reason reason for the night vision... (3, Funny)

jplamb (680140) | about 10 years ago | (#8869062)

I think the real reason the projectionist wanted the night vision goggles is to watch people getting it on.

Stupid. (0, Redundant)

Kid Zero (4866) | about 10 years ago | (#8869063)

I can't believe someone was stupid enough to copy a flop, and do so blatently. Geez, the gene pool needs some chlorine.

Blinded by the light (4, Funny)

LostCluster (625375) | about 10 years ago | (#8869073)

From the BBC piece...
Mr Joun was arrested after another audience member complained about a red light on a camcorder at the Pacific Theatre at the Grove.
Just how much hacking is needed to take the red light out of a consumer camcorder? He would have gotten away with it if it wasn't for that LED.

Nonsense is the name of the game... (1)

LibrePensador (668335) | about 10 years ago | (#8869075)

At a time when all goverment agencies are complaining that many of the 9/11 leads were not followed due to the fact that they had too much on their plate, it is great to see that the lessons have been learned.

Focus the attention of the police on the odd moviegoer that may have a videocamera, that is surely to do us all a great deal of good.

Since according to the studios, their very existence is on the line, next time a national tragedy occurs, we will be sad but glad to know that at least the studios were and saved and we will be able to go to the movies and realize the redeeming qualities of the Holywood crapola of the day.

Thanks. It's nice to see that we have the pulse of the times.

How ironic... (2, Funny)

lxt (724570) | about 10 years ago | (#8869078)

...that it would be cheaper for the cinemas to use Video Cameras with NightVision as oppossed to goggles...

Mathmatics of Law Enforcement (1)

Stormcrow309 (590240) | about 10 years ago | (#8869079)

Profit increase by prosecuting law/Cost of prosecuting law = Fiscal benefit of law

I would love to see if the MPAA/RIAA groups profit off of these laws, or if the morons just make fools of themselves.

Is it California or just me? (1)

rascanban (732991) | about 10 years ago | (#8869089)

Are there other states that have similar laws? Or is it only the sunny West Coast state that is trying to make a less violent prison population?

i can see it now (1)

the_unknown_soldier (675161) | about 10 years ago | (#8869090)

great, now a bunch of horny teenagers will be watched by a bunch of horny 20-somethings in the back row of the theatre with night vision goggles, with paris hilton style results

lets just say nobody will be downloading screeners for a while

Interesting... (3, Insightful)

l33t-gu3lph1t3 (567059) | about 10 years ago | (#8869092)

While I personally don't agree with being watched in a movie theatre, these guys are just trying to prevent the asshats from ripping off their stuff. If you want to watch a movie, you go to see it, rent it, or buy it. If it's really good enough to want to see then it's good enough to want to buy.

How is this a violation of rights? Security cameras are everywhere these days. I fail to see how this is any different. I do consider it a waste of time, however. Isn't the projectionist supposed to be watching the *movie* to make sure it's showing up in focus?

One thing that's kinda funny is the law that this dumbass is being charged under. Bringing a camcorder into theatres is illegal? Maybe the *use* of such devices should be illegal in a theatre, but not the mere presence. That's tantamount to charging someone with conspiracy to commit murder for owning a gun.

I believe what the theatre SHOULD do is reserve the right to confiscate any electronic equipment :)

Damn (1)

CGP314 (672613) | about 10 years ago | (#8869095)

Projectionists Using Night Vision Goggles in Theaters

For a second there I thought there was a night vision version of google. I imagined an all red display that could be used by stargazers.

-Colin [colingregorypalmer.net]

Ummm...OK! (1)

Gilmoure (18428) | about 10 years ago | (#8869097)

Stay out of theaters...don't buy CD's...don't listen to corporate radio...don't eat fast food...don't drive SUVs...don't wear Nike...don't eat Martha Stewart...don't drink StarBucks...don't use Windows...don't use Macs...don't use Sony...don't drink Budwieser...don't watch The Simpsons...

Okay. So what equipment... (2, Insightful)

sczimme (603413) | about 10 years ago | (#8869103)

will theatre owners/operators use to pinpoint the asshats making lots of noise during the movie?

Yes, the video cameras are prohibited but at least they're quiet. I guess making the moviegoing experience more enjoyable (tolerable?) isn't that high on the priority list.

/waits for movies to be released on DVD 'cause movie theatres are no longer enjoyable. YMMV.

Wrong Target. (1)

Capt_Troy (60831) | about 10 years ago | (#8869106)

You couldn't pay me 7 dollars to watch a whole movie taped in a theater with a camecorder. No thanks.

Seems like a lot of money spent to prevent something that nobody wants to watch anyway. The real problem is the people who work at the theater and the people who copy DVD screeners or pre-release copies.

first (4, Funny)

WormholeFiend (674934) | about 10 years ago | (#8869109)

first they came for the people smuggling food into the theatres, but I didnt say anything because I wasnt a theatre food smuggler...

then they came for the cellular phone users, but I didnt say anything because I dont use a cellphone while watching movies at the theatre...

then they came for the camcorder users, but I didnt say anything because I didnt tape movies at the theatre...

when they came for me I didnt say anything, I just decided to spend my money elsewhere.

Oh no (1)

imgumbydamnit (730663) | about 10 years ago | (#8869113)

Paul Rubens will soon have a lot of company in the pork-pull theatre gallery. Imagine what the projectionist will see at American Pie Three.

My other sig is drunk.

In other news (1)

Chuut-Riit (48419) | about 10 years ago | (#8869124)

across the country, movie theater projectionists are being arrested for wanking off in projection booth while using night vision goggles to watch high school couples copulate in back row.

CA Government bound by special interests? NEVER! (1)

penginkun (585807) | about 10 years ago | (#8869127)

Lord I hate our government here in Cali. First they want to raise taxes on us in spite of the fact that we're already the most heavily taxed state in the lower 48. Then they pass laws mandating JAIL TIME for the petty crime of recording a movie with a video camera?

Nope, the government isn't bound by any special interests here...sheesh. I think I'd better get out before criticising the gov't in a public forum carries a death sentence!

Clever idea about the night vision goggles, though...

C'mon (4, Insightful)

p4ul13 (560810) | about 10 years ago | (#8869133)

"The lesson is clear: stay out of movie theaters and you won't get arrested."

The message is don't videotape a movie playing in the theater. I mean really, is *this* a problem for you?

This isn't what keeps me out of theaters (1)

jyoull (512280) | about 10 years ago | (#8869135)

I love movies of all kinds but I seldom go to theaters. It's not the guys with the video cameras that bother me (Is this REALLY so common?) but the morons with cell phones, the people who talk back to the screen (I checked and turns out the actors actually CANNOT hear the audience, unlike a stage play), and the $9 to $12/ticket price combined with $4 paper cups of soda and "no outside food permitted" rules.

Screw that. I miss watching good movies on big screens. On the other hand, indie films and film festivals are (a) squarely outside the MPAA's space; (b) less expensive; (c) attended by people who respect the art and keep their phones put away, so that's where I spend my film dollars.

So? It's already been pirated long before this guy (1)

DroopyStonx (683090) | about 10 years ago | (#8869138)

Big deal, put the guy in jail. The Alamo has already been recorded and upload. Hell, the high quality screener has even been leaked.

Their attempts at stoping piracy are pretty lame, if you ask me.

Any time I read a story like this, it makes me want to download more movies than I already do. Any time I see one of those annoying anti-piracy commercials, "If you pirate movies, how am I supposed to buy $15 million dollar houses," I feel the same way. It's funny how they think this teaches people, but it only encourages them to do it more.

Skittles (1)

telemonster (605238) | about 10 years ago | (#8869142)

The house lights come on, WHOOP WHOOP WHOOP the klaxon howls. "UNAUTHORIZED BAG OF SKITTLES DETECTED IN ISLE 7! GUARDS, SECURE!" is heard over a PA speaker with a narrow range of fidelity. Troopers hustle down the isles and rip some kid out of his seat, skittles briefly rain down on nearby customers. Kid is hustled away, movie starts back up and house lights go down.

poor analogy with the drugs (1)

cheek (588117) | about 10 years ago | (#8869157)

I don't know if the analogy to drug use is a good one. I know a lot of people smoking up before AND after exams... Needless to say, I hope they're more successful with preventing video piracy, because that's actually bad.

Come on, use some common brain cells. (5, Insightful)

Saeed al-Sahaf (665390) | about 10 years ago | (#8869158)

The lesson is clear: stay out of movie theaters and you won't get arrested.

The whole feel of the implied editorial of this write-up is that there is something sinister and wrong about using noght-vision scopes to catch people who bring a video cam into a theater. But remember, it is people just like this ASSHOLE who got busted, that give RAII and the motion picture Nazis the fodder to shoot down P2P. Come on, there is no legitimate "fair use" excuse for bringing a video cam into a theater and filming the movie. Exactly who is the "ass-hat" here?

the war on drugs?? (2, Insightful)

neoThoth (125081) | about 10 years ago | (#8869162)

give me a fuggin break here. The illegal distribution of cocaine and herion is not an analogy I would ascribe to copying a movie! It's not like pirating produces junkies or even damages ones health if viewed (except those crap movies like Alamo).
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