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Film Studios Sue Samsung Over DVD players

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 8 years ago | from the day-late-and-a-dollar-short dept.

567

Lam1969 writes "The Korea Times reports that five U.S. film studios have taken Samsung to court for selling DVD players which allow users to bypass DRM features. The film companies, including Walt Disney and Time Warner, are demanding Samsung recall the players. According to a Samsung spokesman quoted in the article, the movie studios probably 'take issue' with Samsung's HD841 model, which Samsung sold in the United States for five months in 2004."

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Overreaction? (1)

svip (678490) | more than 8 years ago | (#14774876)

Seems an extremely exaggerated lawsuit, more than usual.

frist rrprost (-1, Offtopic)

StanVassilevTroll (956384) | more than 8 years ago | (#14774877)

itute. black and blue, if you know what i mean

Re:frist rrprost (-1, Offtopic)

svip (678490) | more than 8 years ago | (#14774886)

I even had time to construct a sentence.

Re:frist rrprost (-1, Offtopic)

chunky shit salsa (956359) | more than 8 years ago | (#14774922)

why you gotta play a brotha like that?

it's all samsung's fault! (5, Insightful)

tcjohnson (949147) | more than 8 years ago | (#14774887)

From the article: ''The Motion Picture Association of America estimates that the movie industry lost $5.4 billion last year due to piracy.'' Hrm, yeah, and I bet that's all people buying dvd's from other countries and bepassing the DRM with samsung equipment. Oh, wait, wasn't that the Linux pirates last week?

They should try air freight. (1)

leonbrooks (8043) | more than 8 years ago | (#14774934)

Sure it's more expensive, but being boarded and pillaged in flight is still a fairly rare thing for commercial jets.

Re:They should try air freight. (1)

typical (886006) | more than 8 years ago | (#14774984)

Fairly [imdb.com] rare, yes.

Re:it's all samsung's fault! (1)

mpe (36238) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775113)

From the article: ''The Motion Picture Association of America estimates that the movie industry lost $5.4 billion last year due to piracy.''

What is this expressed as a percentage of those same companies profits?

Re:it's all samsung's fault! (1)

drgonzo59 (747139) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775115)

Cause we all know it couldn't possibly be that they produce pure shit, nothing worth spending $19.95 for a DVD or spending $10 to see it in the movie theatre. I have recently been hitting the library for some nice film classics, some film noir, some Hitchcock -- that was the golden age of cinema, none of this Ben Aflec and J. Lo crap.

Come after me (5, Insightful)

abscissa (136568) | more than 8 years ago | (#14774889)

What I have done for all the DVDs in my OWN collection is bypass the DRM using DVD decrypter (w00t!) because I am sick of these goddamn preveiews, menus, copyright notices, birth control notices, and other shit. DVD Shrink is a nice utility that allows you to reformat a DVD so that you can put the disc in the drive and JUST WATCH THE MOVIE. Some of these more recent DVDs that have come out require ten minutes of mandatory (e.g. you can't fast forward) viewing of SHITE before you can see WHAT YOU PAID TO WATCH. For rental DVD's, don't even bother... it's worse than the old VHS tapes, even though the retailers are PAYING LESS now to maintain their inventory!!

My local kebab shop doesn't sue me... (4, Insightful)

leonbrooks (8043) | more than 8 years ago | (#14774961)

...if I "reformat" one of their falafel rolls before eating it, so why should a content provider have any say in how you view their content?

To be certain, it's nice for them to be able to ensure that the original content is high-quality and in a certain order and all, but I should be the one to decide whether I want to watch ads and splash-screens, or even more pointedly whether my kids watch the entire movie or just the 98% of it that isn't offensive.

Would they care if I piped it into the 320x200 monochrome screen on my mobile 'phone to watch? Or watched it through a filter that corrected for colour blindness? Or just colour-inverted it? Or played it at 120% of realtime? Or toneshifted the soundtrack? Or karaoke style? If so, why?

Re:My local kebab shop doesn't sue me... (4, Insightful)

R.D.Olivaw (826349) | more than 8 years ago | (#14774979)

because you are supposed to buy seperate versions of the same movie for you DVD player and for your mobile and you i-pod and your PSP and any future gadget capable of playing movies that you might buy in the future.

Even better (1)

typical (886006) | more than 8 years ago | (#14774988)

What I have done for all the DVDs in my OWN collection is bypass the DRM using DVD decrypter (w00t!) because I am sick of these goddamn preveiews, menus, copyright notices, birth control notices, and other shit.

I have a secondhand Linux box with mplayer, a DVD drive and TV out hooked up to the TV. Unskippable previews? I think not.

Re:Come after me (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14775011)

Ha! You too eh.

Ads before DVD's is *such* a scam.

I don't believe it's all about flogging off the studios other wares either... not for a second!

I reckon they are *deliberately* trying to degrade the viewing experience for DVDs by reverting back to the ads before the movie VCR model, so as to make it easier for them to push their next generation DVD formats such as HD-DVD and Blueray.

They want to make DVDs seem obsolete, and equivalent to VCRs in consumers minds.

Think about it. For most consumers the promise of high definition means jack-**** as they don't have the hardware to appreciate it, so the studios have a tough sell ahead of them.

It's a far easier push for them to sell their DRM-ed to sh*t next gen-formats if they make the current generation look at obsolete as they can. I wouldn't even put it past them to deliberately drop the compression quality on new releases just to make the new formats look better.

I have my tin foil hat on... I know what's going on! :c)

Re:Come after me (1)

aztektum (170569) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775022)

If you hate it so much why do you keep buying them?

Re:Come after me (1)

ben_1432 (871549) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775035)

Mod this guy up. DVD Decryptor + Shrink makes retarded dvd's most convenient.

Re:Come after me (4, Insightful)

Tom (822) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775048)

One of the best features of mplayer is it's no-nonsense approach to DVD playback. It just launches the movie. No menus, no FBI warnings, no ads, no crap.

Explaining DRM to a 2 year old (5, Interesting)

daBass (56811) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775052)

My brother was recently forced to copy a DVD. It was a very cheap children's DVD his son loves. The problem? There was a 2 and a half minute non-skipable copyright notice before the main feature.

You try explaining that one to a 2 year old...

Re:Explaining DRM to a 2 year old (5, Funny)

flewp (458359) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775155)

Shouldn't be too hard, since I bet most of the people responsible for such things have the mental capacity of a 2 year old...

VCR (3, Funny)

mtenhagen (450608) | more than 8 years ago | (#14774890)

I heard you can connect a vcr to the output and then record everything you play, I can imagine the studios are upset.

Re:VCR (1)

ad0gg (594412) | more than 8 years ago | (#14774900)

You can't actually, macrovision will give you a distorted picture.

Re:VCR (2, Informative)

sg_oneill (159032) | more than 8 years ago | (#14774958)

....or you can just throw it thru a genlock to fix up the buggy colorbursts.

This post is in violation of the DMCA, if I was american.

Re:VCR (1)

Petersson (636253) | more than 8 years ago | (#14774975)

You can't actually, macrovision will give you a distorted picture.

Not if you remove it.

Once I needed to play DVD on really old TV without A/V inputs. The only way was to connect DVD player through VCR's A/V inputs, while the VCR was connected to TV through antenna cable.

Such configuration couldn't play Macrovisioned DVDs normally, regardless to a fact, that VCR's tape mechanism was jammed long ago and I couldn't record the movie anyway even if I wanted to (I did not).

The only way out was to play DVDs with macrovision protection removed.

Is this the way the things are meant to work???

Re:VCR (1)

bitingduck (810730) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775025)

You can't actually, macrovision will give you a distorted picture.

Then my playstation must be broken, since for obscure reasons related to an old TV, a strange cable arrangement, and cheapness, I run the PS2 through the front AV inputs of a cheap VCR. The PS2 is my primary DVD player and I've never noticed any distorted picture...

Re:VCR (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14775034)

Easy fixed, get a macrovision removal kit... (cough) sorry, "image enhancer" from a reputable outlet and go for your life. That's how I watch DVDs on my 1950s tv (mmmmmm, woodgrain finish, cloth speaker covers, hardware I can both understand and repair). Setup: dvd->[die macrovision die box #1]->vcr (can't modulate on vhf, unfortunately)->[no really macrovision, bugger off box #2]->channel 0 modulator->tv. See, easy ;)

Seriously, though, what exactly about the above setup makes mpaa so angry (and how does it make me a pirate, matey)? Is it the non-spectacular (but still ok) picture quality ruining their precious "masterpieces"? Is it my failure to consume a new tv in favour of something with a bit of personality? Is it the monophonic sound? Or are they just control freaks?

typical.. (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14774893)

so where can I get one of these players? ... hmm time to do a search on Ebay.

Re:typical.. buggy hardware (1)

nut (19435) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775087)

Google for samsung hd841 and the first page you get is a forum full of complaints [ecoustics.com] . You might not want one anyway...

I'll stick with DRM (-1, Troll)

antifoidulus (807088) | more than 8 years ago | (#14774897)

if the studios promise me a Korean woman in return.

Re:I'll stick with DRM (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14775060)

I'm sure you want a young, skinny Korean woman, not an old, fat one. Friends and relatives that have traveled to Korea on business have noticed there are only young, skinny women and old, fat women. Their theory is that the old, fat women have eaten the young, skinny ones.

kvcd (3, Insightful)

jlebrech (810586) | more than 8 years ago | (#14774898)

my dvd player plays kvcd's

sue them

Ebay (3, Funny)

appleLaserWriter (91994) | more than 8 years ago | (#14774901)

In other news, prices for Samsung's HD841 DVD player skyrocket on EBay.

Deeper investigation reveals... (2, Interesting)

leonbrooks (8043) | more than 8 years ago | (#14774919)

...that the sellers are mostly front-men for Samsung. (-:

It's a pity that they couldn't actually do that, because it'd probably come close to paying their legal costs for warding off greedy corporate control-freaks.

Speaking of which, how are Samsung themselves in the GCCF department? I haven't heard anything bad about them on that front.

You seem to have at least two echoes below... (-1, Offtopic)

leonbrooks (8043) | more than 8 years ago | (#14774929)

...already -- and mods, please give him +1 Insightful, because Slash has no +1 Prophetic. (-:

CPRM is like JEDEC (5, Insightful)

BadAnalogyGuy (945258) | more than 8 years ago | (#14774903)

Samsung is the bad guy here. Well, insofar as Rambus was the bad guy in JEDEC. Everyone who was involved in the creation of the DVD standard agreed to a certain set of rules that they would abide by, but Samsung (like Rambus) flagrantly violated those rules and put other members of the association at risk.

Now, DRM and especially things like region locks are really terrible for the consumer, but that's not the issue here. If there were a non-DRM standard for DVD, Samsung could manufacture players for that standard all they like. The fact is that they agreed to a set of rules which included not making non-DRM players, and they decided to go ahead and make a player that is for all intents and purposes non-DRM.

They will be hit with a penalty, no doubt.

Re:CPRM is like JEDEC (3, Insightful)

Oersoep (938754) | more than 8 years ago | (#14774945)

"Everyone who was involved in the creation of the DVD standard agreed to a certain set of rules that they would abide by"

But what about CD's then?

Ever noticed how many CD's in the record stores do NOT have de CompactDisk-icon anymore? That's because the copy protection (sabotage) violates the CD standard. And that's why some car-stereo's don't play them.

Who's going to sue the record stores for selling non-CD's calling them CD's?

Re:CPRM is like JEDEC (1)

pimpimpim (811140) | more than 8 years ago | (#14774981)

Very good point! I guess they can afford keeping up the double morale much easier than Joe Doe who bought these "crippled" cds though.

Re:CPRM is like JEDEC (5, Insightful)

ultranova (717540) | more than 8 years ago | (#14774960)

Samsung is the bad guy here. Well, insofar as Rambus was the bad guy in JEDEC. Everyone who was involved in the creation of the DVD standard agreed to a certain set of rules that they would abide by, but Samsung (like Rambus) flagrantly violated those rules and put other members of the association at risk.

Yeah, a bad guy like Robin Hood or George Washington - they too violated the commonly agreed rule to lube their backsides and take it nice and quiet. And now Samsung has joined these horrible villains in their infamy. Oh, the humanity.

Now, DRM and especially things like region locks are really terrible for the consumer, but that's not the issue here.

Actually, it is. Samsung realized that they could make a product that's better for their customers than what was being manufactured previously, and took the opportunity to do so. That's all there is to it, really.

The fact is that they agreed to a set of rules which included not making non-DRM players, and they decided to go ahead and make a player that is for all intents and purposes non-DRM.

If one of the Prince John's tax collectors decides to let some poor peasant keep his money and buy food for his children instead of doing his "duty" by taking every last penny and leaving the peasant to watch his children starve to death, is he a bad guy for breaking the rules ?

They will be hit with a penalty, no doubt.

Sure, the Sheriff of Nottingham must deliver the taxes to Prince John, after all.

Re:CPRM is like JEDEC (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14774972)

You know that Robin Hood isn't a real live person, right?

Huh? Wow, you're bought & paid for. (5, Insightful)

aussersterne (212916) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775008)

"The fact is that they agreed to a set of rules which included not making non-DRM players, and they decided to go ahead and make a player that is for all intents and purposes non-DRM."

Um, by definition this makes them the good guy.

Hardly (1)

BadAnalogyGuy (945258) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775092)

A world where everyone is allowed to do what he thinks is right is a world without laws.

Re:Hardly (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14775152)

A world where people deliberately violate laws they consider to be morally wrong, is a world where such laws can eventually be repealed, and ultimately, a better world.

Obligatory reference (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14774906)

MPAA: "I find your lack of DRM Disturbing..."

eBay? (-1, Redundant)

orthogonal (588627) | more than 8 years ago | (#14774913)

So how much of a premium will I pay to buy one on eBay?

Good Marketing for Resale (-1, Redundant)

anagama (611277) | more than 8 years ago | (#14774916)

I'll wager a shiny quarter that the publicity generates a bit of a seller's market for these -- perhaps they'll sell on ebay for more than full new retail was. I wonder if my DVD player is one of these -- it'd be nice to make a profit on a player more than a year old. Besides, I hate the bright blue ring light around the power button. I'd love to have a player that would be respectfully dark during the movie.

Re:Good Marketing for Resale (1)

anagama (611277) | more than 8 years ago | (#14774951)

Holy Moly -- I do have this model. Now to find a link to the remote control key sequence. ;-)

Re:Good Marketing for Resale (1)

thedletterman (926787) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775150)

Xbox Media Center (XBMC) automatically can turn the power light off on your xbox when it's playing a movie. Not to mention it supports SMB shared drives, and plays just about every video format you can imagine. Just hack out an xbox (Get em while supplies last) and have a killer media center PC for cheap.

More/Better Links (5, Informative)

TubeSteak (669689) | more than 8 years ago | (#14774918)

Engadget [engadget.com] has a slightly more information.

And ultimately, Google News will provide all the stories you could want [google.com]

To summarize the facts:
1. Samsung stopped producing this drive a year and a half ago
2. The 'features' were unlockable through remote control key combos
3. "The DVD-HD841 DVD-player can allow region encoding and high-bandwidth digital-content protection (HDCP) bypassing, provided a code is entered by remote control. Although pulled off shelves, its genes appear to have been transmitted to the DVD-HD747 and DVD-HD941." reference here [indiantelevision.com]

HDCP Bypassing!!
Weren't we just complaining about HDCP a day or two ago?

Run, don't walk, to eBay and get one of these players before Samsung pulls 'em.

Re:More/Better Links (1)

Kjella (173770) | more than 8 years ago | (#14774998)

3. "The DVD-HD841 DVD-player can allow region encoding and high-bandwidth digital-content protection (HDCP) bypassing, provided a code is entered by remote control.

The first is nothing new, but as far as HDCP is concerned... This isn't a HD/Blu-Ray player, so whate is the big deal? Are we talking about upscaled DVDs here? I notice they use high-bandwidth rather than high definition in perfect doublespeak. Upscaled DVDs is something anyone with a computer can do easily anyway.

Re:More/Better Links (1)

io-waiter (745875) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775097)

I think its more about the player being able to bypass HDCP and to send upscaled over analog, it seems as the movie industry are dead set on makeing sure that disabling hdcp wont be as easy as bypassing Region coding.
Bypassing the region codes can be done with a standard remote on a lot of players, other require a special "service" remote, if that became reality with HDCP...

Wonder why samsung doesnt just play along, they probably get to sell some more expensive HDCP compatible TVs.

Re:More/Better Links (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14775159)

Maybe because players with known 'tricks' to bypass DRM crap sell like hotcakes?

Back when I was in the market for standalone DVD player, savy customers asked for one thing - 'how easy is this to mod region free/macrovision free?'. After that was settled, then discussion turned into the other features.

In other words, at least over here, high end DVD player market was one where not-easily-moddable devices were DOA at retail. nobody wanted them.

Yes, uneducated masses bought crap from chain stores at low prices with no such care (tho even those players were often unlockable with remote control keycodes), but at high end, it was the first feature people would ask from the salespeople.

Samsung is not stupid. They want to produce consumer electronics that SELL. This model probably sold a lot better than crippled ones. In fact, some manufacturers seem to be engaged in 'shell game' regarding this - they put out player model, then 'leak' the unlock info, and when MPAA cries foul, they have already a new model ready to replace the old one.

This time it's different in that, 1. HDCP was involved and 2. I think MPAA wants to set an example to the 'consumer-licking nogood electronics manufacturers'...

IMHO Samsung should flip the middle finger to the MPAA.

Re:More/Better Links (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14775139)

In fact most DVD players region encoding can be bypassed. I picked up a huge list for less than £1.00 on ebay, identified my model, entered the code and now I can play dvd's from anywhere.

Great.

But I thought... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14774930)

...DRM was there to protect me from illegal content that could get me in trouble. Which is good and all, but what happens when I put my home made DVDs in and it refuses to play them? What happens when I put my backup DVD instead of my original one? Or is there a program/service I can pay for that will replace my damaged DVD's free of charge or even with a small fee? I'm just an average consumer that does not own a DRM nfested player yet and am afraid of the future...

Raise your hand... (4, Funny)

Deathbane27 (884594) | more than 8 years ago | (#14774931)

The film companies, including Walt Disney and Time Warner, are demanding Samsung recall the players.

Raise your hand if you're going to return your player if/when it's recalled. =P

Re:Raise your hand... (1)

elFisico (877213) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775085)

Raise your hand if you're going to return your player if/when it's recalled.

depends on how much they are willing to pay... :o)

Re:Raise your hand... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14775086)

Yes, the movie studios guys look pretty stupid with this recall request. But they look stupid anyway, trying to patch their sinking boat over and over again...

Don't buy players from big companies (5, Insightful)

skinfitz (564041) | more than 8 years ago | (#14774936)

This is why I always recommend avoiding DVD players badged by large companies.

Large companies have more to lose if they don't toe the MPAA line (I'm seriously wondering how long it will be until players refuse to play a movie more than once a week or so).

Buy cheap players packed with features from middle east companies that may not even exist - much harder to threaten a company like that and features sell those sort of players and fierce competition keeps prices low.

Re:Don't buy players from big companies (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14774952)

Kind of frightening how one might consider the middle east someplace where one can retain freedom and rights. How backwards our little country named the United States is slowly becoming.

Re:Don't buy players from big companies (1)

16K Ram Pack (690082) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775077)

I'm not sure about the middle east. As far as I know, the cheap ones are coming out of China.

And yes, all my recent players were cheapo ones from Tesco and Asda in the UK, and nearly all are a doddle to change region codes with a remote hack.

why only samsung (1)

pintomp3 (882811) | more than 8 years ago | (#14774946)

why are they singling out samsung? there are quite a few models made by quite a few manfacturers that are unlockable via codes. are they trying to scare the industry into making sure that such work-arounds are not going to be in future hardware like blu-ray and hd-dvd?

Re:why only samsung (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14775019)

true...i mean like other asian countries like china for example, sell modified dvd machines that can play just about anything and bypass anything...why single out samsung?

Re:why only samsung (1)

tosspot1 (663265) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775030)

Good point.. But it isn't just a few other models - almost every DVD player I have ever seen has unlock codes via the remote control. If the shop doesn't give you a piece of paper with the unlock codes on it, then you just go to the various sites on the net and look them up. I won't buy a DVD player unless it has the ability to be unlocked - why would I buy something that ends up being limited in that it can't play the discs that I bought when I was living (quite legally) in other countries? Am I expected to buy a new DVD player in each region at the behest of the MPAA? I don't think so...

A glimpse of the future? (1)

Jugalator (259273) | more than 8 years ago | (#14774963)

I can't recall any special successful lawsuits over DVD region coding bypassing through a remote control lately, if they sent any lawsuits at all about this. This despite it being pretty common. Would a company producing DVD / HD-DVD drives really violate anything like the DMCA if they had all protective features like HDCP intact, but let the user manually disable them via techniques hushed about and leaked from unofficial souces, a bit like I believe it works today with regular DVD drives and zone check disabling? I have local video stores that can take a drive they sell and "fix" it so it's region free if a user wants it.

hm..?? (1)

daddyrief (910385) | more than 8 years ago | (#14774969)

Is it just me, or is there is barely even an article here? No one even knows which particular models of DVD players the MPAA are bitching about/want recalled. Obviously, they can't mean all of Samsung's players...

Hm...they are the RIAA though...

Re:hm..?? (1)

mooglez (795643) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775145)

Atleat here in Europe, the following Samsung models allow you to turn HDCP off from the remote controller:

Samsung HD950
Samsung HD945
Samsung HD850

From www.videohelp.com (great source for DVD player specs and unlock codes)

1. HDCP-Free: Requires only DVD Remote.
2. Power On DVD player, wait until "no disk" display
3. Press "Angle"
4. then number on the remote "4", "3", "2", "7"
5. TV Screen displays "HDCP Free"
6. Press "Angle" to turn off the "HDCP Free" display
7. Try 1 more time from step 1-6 (HDCP Free will display)

Removing the HDCP also turn the DVD-HD950 into region free player
HDCP Off will enable you to use the component with adjustable resolution to it's capabiltiy (480P, 720P, 768P & 1080i.

movie industry list $5.4bn? (5, Interesting)

linuxhansl (764171) | more than 8 years ago | (#14774977)

The Motion Picture Association of America estimates that the movie industry lost $5.4 billion last year due to piracy.

$5.400.000.000?! I sure would like to see the math behind this estimation. It's probably the old non-sensical #copied movie * $$/movie. Let's say the average DVD price is around $20, that means 270.000.000 movies have been copied? Yeah right!

And it assumes:

  1. All of the people who pirated a movie would have bought otherwise.
  2. None of the people who pirated later went and bought the movie.

I'm getting quite tired of these MPAA calculations.

The opposed feature in these players is most likely the ability to disable the country-code in these players (via a hidden menu) so that non-US DVDs - in fact all DVDs - can be played in the players. I for one never understood why I shouldn't be able to watch DVDs that I bought in Europe because I *cannot* get them here.

Oh well... In the end the MPAA will succeed convincing enough politicians who will pass more and more stringent laws, copyright will be extended to 500 years, and in a decade or so the movie industry will be facing bancruptcy and wondering why nobody is buying their super-duper-extra-high-definition-drm-secured-DVDs -of-dumb-holywood-crap anymore.

As I mentioned somewhere before: Instead of land-owners and peasants without rights and property we'll have information-owners and rightless masses of consumers... Information-Feudalism.

Re:movie industry list $5.4bn? (1)

trezor (555230) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775015)

$5.400.000.000?! ...snip... politicians who will pass more and more stringent laws, copyright will be extended to 500 years

When copyright is extended to 5 times todays "limited period", expect to see that number turn into $27,000,000,000 + inflation.

Re:movie industry list $5.4bn? (1)

naich (781425) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775016)

I'm getting quite tired of these MPAA calculations.

Reminds me of the BSA piracy calculator, which go something like: $a = A wild guess of how many computers there are in the UK $b = No. of licences sold by microsoft $c = Cost of license. Cost of piracy = ($a - $b) * $c There are lies, damn lies, statistics and piracy estimates.

Re:movie industry list $5.4bn? (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775135)

I for one never understood why I shouldn't be able to watch DVDs that I bought in Europe because I *cannot* get them here.

It is your patriotic duty to support your poor suffering film industry.

Wonderful (4, Funny)

LarsWestergren (9033) | more than 8 years ago | (#14774986)

I'm really looking forward to the day when I can get sued for just owning a DVD player that allows me to bypass commercials, inane FBI warnings, and ads for studios and technologies like THX.

Evidence (4, Interesting)

pubjames (468013) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775004)


Is there any evidence that the encryption actually reduces piracy, in other words, increases sales? Is there any evidence that zoning on DVDs increases sales?

To what extent does zoning reduce sales? For instance, holidaymakers and businessmen not being able to purchase DVDs in the countries they visit due to zoning? Have the film studios researched this? Anyone know of any relevant market research?

Re:Evidence (2, Informative)

kfg (145172) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775121)

For instance, holidaymakers and businessmen not being able to purchase DVDs in the countries they visit due to zoning?

Yes, they've researched this.I think perhaps you misunderstand. It is this sort of behavior that region coding is overtly supposed to cause. It's very raison d'etre.

They aren't interested in maximizing sales, they're intested in maximizing profits. Region coding allows them to artificially manipulate markets. A lost sale here and there is nothing compared to this.

KFG

Re:Evidence (1)

meringuoid (568297) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775136)

Is there any evidence that zoning on DVDs increases sales?

That's not what zoning is about.

The idea behind zoning is to prevent Europeans from getting hold of the American DVD release while the movie's still showing in their cinemas - and thereby to protect cinema revenues. Otherwise they'd have to release movies simultaneously in both areas, which messes up their marketing.

It's also important to help them squeeze cash out of poorer countries. The typical Indian or Chinese can't afford to pay as much for a DVD as the typical Canadian or German. Region coding allows the studios to sell the exact same product in India for far less than they sell it in Germany, and not have to worry about those dastardly Germans buying mail-order from India instead of paying their own vastly inflated rates.

It's not about increasing sales, so much as profits. Region coding allows them to get away with rip-offs that would otherwise be impossible.

CPRM (2, Informative)

dartarrow (930250) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775007)

Content Protection for Recordable Media (CPRM) [answers.com] is THE thing used to enforce DRM in DVD players and are burnt in during production of the players. However it is AFAIK only mandatory in US, meaning u could get a player without CPRM keys that can play (and write) pirated DVDs in South American and Asian COuntries (except Japan and maybe a few other countries). Got a friend in Singapore? He could get you a good player

XD

Re:CPRM (1)

Mycroft_VIII (572950) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775045)

Of course with that imported dvd player you are will also want a voltage converter so you can plug it into the wall and a format converter so you can watch a pal movie on an ntsc tv.

Mycroft

This isn't about a recall, it's a warning (2, Insightful)

99luftballon (838486) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775012)

Samsung stopped making this particular player nearly two years ago and the lawsuit looks more like a warning to other manufacturers.

Any recall would be useless - if someone has one of these players and wants to keep it they'll just say it broke and they binned it. This wouldn't be impossible since a quick skim thought online forums indicates build quality on this particular model wasn't up to much.

Instead the studios are sending a message to all DVD manufacturers to beef up their future models so this kind of thing can't be done in the first place. If they don't they too can expect a legal fight.

Personally I think they are on to a loser - studios have very little pull over hardware manufacturers and if there's strong demand for an open player they will build it.

Re:This isn't about a recall, it's a warning (1)

DennyK (308810) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775102)

A person who has one of these players wouldn't have to say anything. Product recalls are strictly voluntary for consumers. That, of course, makes this lawsuit completely useless in terms of getting unlocked players out of the public's hands, since anyone who knew enough to unlock their player sure as hell isn't going to send it back for a refund because it can bypass DRM. This lawsuit is most likely a warning, as you said, and an attempt to establish precedent for future cases against any next-gen HD media player manufacturers who release similar unlockable products.

the forgot DRM feature (3, Funny)

Gravis Zero (934156) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775037)

they forgot to mention that samsung also broke a key DRM feature. you know, the one that erases your memory of the movie so you dont describe what happens, to other people.

Go Samsung! (2, Interesting)

ettlz (639203) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775043)

I am starting to turn into a Samsung fanboy, and everything I've bought from them of late works with Linux. At last there is a company that appears to manufacture electronic products the way consumers want.

Re:Go Samsung! (1)

dww (119841) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775147)

Me too!
Samsung screen and printer here - the CLP-510 colour laser that does Duplex printing costs a fraction of any other duplex printer. And yes, it does have Linux drivers too.

"America - where guns are legal but playing music is a crime".

What region codes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14775049)

All this region code stuff is silly. You can go and buy a dvd player that allows ALL REGION CODES to play right now. How is BYPASSING the region codes any different to a player that plays them all anyway? It's all a wank, made by wankers, pure and simple!

A recall? (3, Insightful)

TintinX (569362) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775054)

"The film companies, including Walt Disney and Time Warner, are demanding Samsung recall the players."

Erm, how could Samsung make a recall on these players? They can't force people to give them back.

Recalls are only for products that are faulty, when the purchaser gladly and willingly returns them.

Re:A recall? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14775127)

All Samsung has to do is make up a defect:

"Faulty power line in the DVD Player, your house may burn down"

Probably what the FucktardAAs want to force them to do anyway.

What DRM features? (2, Interesting)

DrXym (126579) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775055)

DVD players don't contain any DRM. Region coding isn't DRM. Region coding doesn't stop me from ripping as many copies of a disc as I want. DRM doesn't stop the large scale pirates making verbatim copies of that disc (though usually with the region encoding removed).

Re:What DRM features? (1)

grimJester (890090) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775120)

DVD players don't contain any DRM. Region coding isn't DRM. Region coding doesn't stop me from ripping as many copies of a disc as I want.

DVD players contain DRM that forces you to watch warnings and ads every time you see a movie. The DRM in DVD players does nothing to prevent you from copying. Every minute's use of your eyeballs is worth money and allowing ads and "Piracy is theft"-propaganda to be bypassed is the same as stealing your eyeballs from their rightful owner!

Which is, of course, the MPAA.

where can i get one? (1)

marafa (745042) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775073)

i want one of those samsung dvd players!

I hate the non-skippable DVDs (4, Interesting)

mochan_s (536939) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775075)

I watch DVDs on my computer. I "upgraded" my DVD-player software and it wouldn't let me skip sections that the DVD says can't skip.

I was watching Voyager DVDs and every episode starts with a non-skippable 10s clip of Voyager powering up and moving across the sreen. Even though it was only for 10s, after 3-4 episodes I was really really hating that clip.

Anyway, I feel that now a pirate DVD is more valueable than a real DVD since pirate DVDs remove all skip codes and DRM and makes for more pleasant viewing.

Re:I hate the non-skippable DVDs (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775124)

Anyway, I feel that now a pirate DVD is more valueable than a real DVD since pirate DVDs remove all skip codes and DRM and makes for more pleasant viewing.

We are damn lucky not to have to do this with CD's.

Re:I hate the non-skippable DVDs (5, Funny)

Quiet_Desperation (858215) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775129)

I was watching Voyager DVDs and every episode starts with a non-skippable 10s clip of Voyager powering up and moving across the sreen. Even though it was only for 10s, after 3-4 episodes I was really really hating that clip.

I had a similar reaction, except that after 3-4 episodes I was really really hating Voyager. :-)

What about current models? (5, Interesting)

Munchr (786041) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775081)

Why sue over a player that hasn't been comercially available for over a year? If they're going to sue over an unlockable player, why not sue Philips over the DVP642 which is still on the market and is region and macrovision unlockable through hidden menus. Or sue a company like Apex which has consistantly released an unlockable model, quickly followed by a "corrected" player, over and over again?

Re:What about current models? (1)

elFisico (877213) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775099)

Why sue over a player that hasn't been comercially available for over a year? If they're going to sue over an unlockable player, why not sue Philips over the DVP642 which is still on the market and is region and macrovision unlockable through hidden menus. Or sue a company like Apex which has consistantly released an unlockable model, quickly followed by a "corrected" player, over and over again?

Pssssst!!! Will you PLEASE shut up?! Don't give them ideas...
Seriously, that's why I prefer not to buy big-brand products. The cheap ones from taiwan or china have much better features like no region code or skipable intros...

hackers? samsung! (1)

mennucc1 (568756) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775091)

every time we talk of DRM, someone (rightly) notices that, in the past, each and any protection scheme was defeated; (and indeed C Doctorow of EFF claims that the failure of DRM is inevitable [dashes.com] ); the common say is "some clever hacker in a garage will find a way 'round it".
And then... Samsung... ?!? This is really funny! LOL! ()
Of all the places and ways to defeat DRM... Samsung !?! (me is rolling and laughing)

Next thing they'll disable forward (2)

noidentity (188756) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775093)

Next thing you know and they'll disable the fast-forward and skip buttons when you put in a DVD.

Oh, wait, they already do. Thank you, Digital Restrictions Management (DRM). <sarcasm>

Seriously, I don't give a fuck about what they want to impose on me. I'll use a restriction-free DVD player just so I can watch the damn movie when I insert it instead of having to wait a minute for all the mandatory crap to play.

Re:Next thing they'll disable forward (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14775131)

Which has absolutely nothing to do with DRM and is in fact part of the DVD specification. A fully compliant DVD is required to have at least one chapter that is unskippable.

What was the "glitch"? (1)

(Score.5, Interestin (865513) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775109)

Does anyone know what this player did that pissed Hollywood off so much? I can't see anything there that other players don't do as well. Or are they trying to make an example of Samsung for some reason?

That silly phrase :) (5, Insightful)

suv4x4 (956391) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775116)

So they basically put this number out of their *ss, and whip it out every time things get rough for them :) This is so amazing!

Samsung: That's it, we're releasing the DVD-s as is.

MPAA: No! You can't!

Samsung: WTF?

MPAA: "The Motion Picture Association of America estimates that the movie industry lost $5.4 billion last year due to piracy."

Samsung: What are those estimates based on, not on Samusng DVD players right?

MPAA: Can't you read man, come on, SHOCK! See: "The Motion Picture Association of America estimates that the movie industry lost $5.4 billion last year due to piracy."

People: MPAA you're suing your users and manifacturers and keep pulling those numbers out of your *ss and applying silly DRM restriction so people don't buy your production, what did you expect?

MPAA: And you'll all be sued!!! You know why!? "The Motion Picture Association of America estimates that the movie industry lost friggin $5.4 billion last year due to friggin piracy."!!! Estimate=Fact! Estimate=fact!! Don't question us or you be sued!!! Arghh..

Drop it. DVD Region coding is dead. (1)

16K Ram Pack (690082) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775119)

All but one of my friends has a player that's been adapted by chipping or remote hacks to be multiregion. The all defeat RCE discs.

It's time to just ditch it. Get together and agree that it's an idea that's past, and quit forcing your customers to waste their time with finding codes on the net.

You aren't cutting sales of R1 discs to the UK.

MPAA designing DVD players (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14775141)

Does the MPAA realise that with the amount of attention this law suite is generating that they are effectively advertising a list of 'features' to be included in future DVD players (well at least to those from small companies in China/Middle East).

a recall, sure that makes sense (4, Interesting)

frovingslosh (582462) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775144)

Of course we all know a recall would get nearly 100% of these offending boxes. I know I certainly would return my box, particularly if I really had DVDs with different region codes and the box could play them all, or if I knew I could use the box to othherwise get around DRM. Heck, who wouldn't want to rush to send back their recalled player for one that was hobbled? Of course, the more cynical might say that the only boxes they would get back on a recall would be those that have already died or those used by people who would never use the device to get around DRM anyway, and that a recall would only serve to alert consumers that this model has a feature they might want and find hard to get. It will be interesting to see how this works out.

What's the Big Deal ? (1)

a_peckover (228357) | more than 8 years ago | (#14775153)

It can resize 480p DVDs to 720p. Big deal, so can any PC DVD playback software. All it's doing is resizing an image. Play a DVD in a screen res higher than 720x480 and you've acheived the same effect.
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