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Best Way to Grab Movie Clips?

Cliff posted more than 7 years ago | from the no-we're-not-talking-full-rips-here dept.

Movies 58

DorkusMasterus asks: "I work for my church in a volunteer sense, and I'm trying to produce a video that will incorporate video clips from films (short, less than 30 seconds per clip, more likely 5-10 seconds), and I am wondering what you fine folks use to grab clips from DVD and TV (in preferably an MPEG or AVI format when completed). Please keep in mind that I am not interested in something that would copy a full-length film, nor am I'm not advocating discussion on how to best pirate films. What utilities would you use to retrieve short clips from DVDs and other digital sources?"

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58 comments

DVD Shrink & TMPGenc (4, Informative)

dada21 (163177) | more than 7 years ago | (#17125298)

I run a church media ministry [vipministry.com] out of my home, and we use DVD Shrink [dvdshrink.org]. The software is freeware, and it is excellent. It lets you select what scenes/chapters/frames you want to copy, and creates a new DVD-compatible clip on your hard drive. What is nice about VOB files (the DVD files) is that they are MPEG-compliant, so you can just rename the VOB extension to MPG and off you go.

If you need to shrink the file to lower res than DVD, I recommend TMPGenc, which works very well. You can also import your VOB/MPG into Adobe Premiere Pro and export it to a new format, while editing clips together with fades, titles, etc.

What is your budget? Do you prefer F/OSS? Windows? Mac? Linux?

Re:DVD Shrink & TMPGenc (2, Interesting)

Baricom (763970) | more than 7 years ago | (#17125378)

Are you familiar with the fair use/DMCA implications? An administration organization that deals with Christian music says public performance is exempt [musicservices.org] from copyright restrictions, but does that also apply to DVDs?

Re:DVD Shrink & TMPGenc (2, Interesting)

dada21 (163177) | more than 7 years ago | (#17125406)

Here's a tough one -- I'm an anarcho-capitalist Christian, so I actually don't pay attention to whatever laws you guys voted for. They're irrelevant for how I live my life. That being said, MANY congregations that I serve are VERY cautious about violating copyright. There's a huge debate that comes up every 6 months or so over at www.churchmedia.net (worst community ever, but its the only one, so that's where we go) about what Fair Use is and isn't.

I use it all, and if anything, my use of "unlicensed products" probably sells more of it -- people see clips, gain interest (or regain interest), and go out and buy the DVD or CD. Ridiculous laws, but some people want to follow them.

Re:DVD Shrink & TMPGenc (3, Informative)

Baricom (763970) | more than 7 years ago | (#17125496)

I understand, and I'd completely agree that the media industry has definitely been taking things overboard in all sorts of ways, and that church performances help them far more than they lose in revenue. However, I don't know if I'd go as far as not paying attention to all laws - see Romans 13:1-7, for example.

Anyway, for the reference of everybody, I did my own research and CCLI claims you need a separate license for performance of movies. The license costs $50-$600 annually depending on which studios you license and your church's attendance, and it seems to imply [cvli.org] that you must play clips off the original media - no dubbing allowed, even for production purposes.

I suppose one should let the Holy Spirit and one's fear of Roman/corporate punishment determine how to proceed. Best of luck regardless of what path you take.

Re:DVD Shrink & TMPGenc (1)

titla1k (875330) | more than 7 years ago | (#17125998)

However, I don't know if I'd go as far as not paying attention to all laws - see Romans 13:1-7, for example.


The way I, and most others I know, understand that passage is that Paul is saying to submit yourselves to the authority of the Kingdom of God, not to the Romans.

But each to their own...

Re:DVD Shrink & TMPGenc (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17126970)

The passage talks about paying taxes, laws being enforced with swords, etc., so it seems pretty clear that it's talking about earthly governments, like that of the Romans.

Re:DVD Shrink & TMPGenc (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17128554)

One should obey one's own code of honour, even and especially when it conflicts with others ... after all,
true love should know of no limits.

Besides, it's christian to pay ones fair share and do good onto others, isn't it? Personally, I always try to give more than I get.

Fuck off, Jesus freak (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17133684)

Fuck off, Jesus freak.

Re:DVD Shrink & TMPGenc (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17154716)

However, I don't know if I'd go as far as not paying attention to all laws - see Romans 13:1-7, for example.

Please show us the application of that passage to Germans under Hitler (yeah, yeah -- Godwin, my ass -- answer the question) or to the janjuweed under the government of Sudan. If you can't do so in a persuasive manner, please leave disputation to your betters.

Re:DVD Shrink & TMPGenc (2, Interesting)

DoubleRing (908390) | more than 7 years ago | (#17126068)

Hrm, I'm curious. I could say that I don't pay attention to the rules that a Mafia sets up. I'd hardly call that wise though. I'd pay a lot of attention and take action (like, um, move away?). The thing is, any organization that has the potential to have a significant impact on your life (let's say, arrest you) shouldn't be straight up ignored.

I find anarcho-capitalism intriguing. What you want is for capitalism to extend into the public utilities, law enforcement, etc. should be run on a capitalist model. I just think there are some things where more money shouldn't equal more power. Or, money shouldn't be involved at all, like libraries. I can see that it would be an excellent way of life (like communism if it ever worked at the way it was supposed to), but it's too dependent on human perfection. As much aversion you may have to government, I find democracy is the best place where our leaders can be placed in a "free market" and each person (well, citizen) can vote equally regardless of whether they're rich or poor. I believe humans are generally good, but shouldn't be trusted. Because of the state that the world is in and the existence of human flaws like racism, it's hard for me to believe more good would come out than bad. People will form corporations and people will form mafias. I can see how things could become very efficient, but with the existence of off-shoring, very little trickle-down will take place and the masses will tend to suffer. Monopolies and cartels form without the urging of government, and American history alone demonstrates how negative of an effect these have. And the capitalization of public utilities is not efficient. What will happen is that each company will create it's own highway/rail/etc. And some things, like air traffic control, have no real market. Who sets the monetary standard by the way?

Law enforcement is similar. I really don't ever see rent-a-cops in malls and neighborhood watches ever do anything more than call the "real" cops. And that's a GOOD thing. A law enforcement without laws is a little scary, especially if that is blended with capitalism meaning money is involved. A great place to look is Sicily. It's been occupied so many times over the years that the constant changing has created a place with virtually no government (well, not anymore really, but historically). During that long unstable time, a fairly stable society rose up. A sort of neighborhood rule. I find that unnecessarily divisive. Neighborhood rule, Mafia rule, gang rule, are all the same in principle, and that is what will happen. There are too many cases in history to ignore the dangerous possibility.

You talk about how you dislike the RIAA's practices. So do I. I would be REALLY scared if they could employ their own law enforcers. All of the jokes about the RIAA police would come to life!

I find it odd that you are also Christian. Will there be free market religion as well? Religion is one of the most hierarchical organizations on earth. It's a step beyond autocracy. Did you ever get to choose your leader? What makes it right for him to rule? Why does he have that power? Do you know that he's perfect, or just take his word for it?

I really respect your views. They fact that you are brave enough to come out and talk about them really shines in my eyes. You have one of the most impressive and logical thought processes I've seen on Slashdot (does that say anything much?). I don't know whether you'd appreciate this, but I'd think you would make an excellent senator or representative. I like to think of Democracy as structured anarchy. It's the best way I can think of letting individual's express themselves without degenerating into complete chaos. Well, we still have problems, but the great thing is, there actually is a way of fixing them. I agree that there are many things that should be commercialized--like space exploration. But stuff like this isn't a zero-sum game. There's room for concurrency.

I've read literature on anarchism, communism, and just lots of good old history (or lies, if you believe otherwise). The problems I see with most of these idealistic governments are the faults and foibles of human character. George Orwell's books 1984 and Animal Farm come to mind. They're both at complete opposite ends of the spectrum: fascism and communism. (Yes, anarchy isn't in there. I'm coming to it! Don't rush me!) They always fail because of people's imperfections. What he's trying to push forward is the middle ground: democracy. Now anarchy is also great in concept, but it can never last. It may outlast this generation, but the lack of any real way to control bad is...well, bad. People are generally good, but those few who are willing to exploit others are going to ruin it for everyone else. Gah, I hate politics, but I hate chaos more.

Like I said, you should be a senator--or activist (just be a peaceful one, please?). You'll get as much fame either way :P. If you don't like something in this country, you can do something about it!

PS: I wanted to PM you or something, but I can't find a way. Is there a way to do that on Slashdot? ','? This is horrendously off-topic. Mod away. I'm being serious (unlike all the fake "burn karma" lines). This really wasn't meant to be public. It is...just involuntarily :)

Re:DVD Shrink & TMPGenc (1)

dada21 (163177) | more than 7 years ago | (#17126166)

I'd pay a lot of attention and take action (like, um, move away?). The thing is, any organization that has the potential to have a significant impact on your life (let's say, arrest you) shouldn't be straight up ignored.

That's completely true, but as someone who has a faith belief, I will not offer resistance if they want to come and take me away. I believe in natural rights and I believe that I can not force anyone to do anything against their will. By default, the law is force. I can not take advantage of the law if it forces a person to do something they don't want to do.

I find anarcho-capitalism intriguing. What you want is for capitalism to extend into the public utilities, law enforcement, etc. should be run on a capitalist model.

Yes, true, but not on the U.S. version of Capitalism. The U.S. is not capitalistic, and hasn't been for probably 150 years (actually, just before Lincoln was President). We are more mercantilistic (which is what Lincoln and the Whigs wanted!) -- government is there to give paternalistic treatment to the powerful and connected. So when I say "capitalism" I mean pure capitalism. My definition of pure capitalism is the opportunity for two people to barter or exchange where both parties will mutually profit. This is true of all bartering except when the State enters the picture (taxes, etc). You won't buy an pear for $50 because you won't gain anything, but you will buy one for $0.50, and both you and the supplier profit. That's the simplicity of the free market. What people need, others will provide for. THAT is capitalism.

Or, money shouldn't be involved at all, like libraries.

Funny, because I am donating money for a private library to be put together in my area. Libraries are terribly inefficient today -- a huge burden on the taxpayers who DON'T use them (the vast majority). Libraries were always funded by the wealthy for the betterment of society -- today that is not true, because the voters can steal from the non-voters for whatever they want. The library is a huge waste of YOUR money. I am doing my year-end taxes right now, and over 50% of my income has gone to government this year. Over 50%. Why? For libraries?

Religion is one of the most hierarchical organizations on earth. It's a step beyond autocracy. Did you ever get to choose your leader? What makes it right for him to rule? Why does he have that power? Do you know that he's perfect, or just take his word for it?

I have been ex-communicated by many "churches" in my area. I don't use the word church, almost never -- I use the word "congregation." I truly believe that most Christians have no clue about the Bible, because they sure don't live it. They're accepting the word of some egomaniacal "pastor" and then they teach their kids the mumbo jumbo that they learned. The Bible is pretty cool, actually -- almost all of it is irrelevant for Christians today. About 95% of it is what I call "the example of human trash;" the 5% that is pertinent is REALLY amazing and goes completely counter to how most Christians live today. Yet I can not judge their actions and their sins, I can only love them. I feel sorry that many Christians are wasting their mortal lives on mumbo jumbo, but that's their choice, their free will. Yes, they vote and steal from me. Yes, they give me a bad name. That's fine, I still love them. I also love the non-faithful, too :) Maybe moreso, hah. If you're interested in my take on Christianity, drop me an e-mail -- even if you're an atheist.

I don't know whether you'd appreciate this, but I'd think you would make an excellent senator or representative. I do appreciate it, and I appreciate your candor. I actually hear it often (I do quite a bit of public speaking, actually), and I've responded to it in an article titled I should be President? [unanimocracy.com] It's an old article, but still solid in terms of my beliefs. I don't believe there can be any mortal leaders because all mortals fall short of perfection -- I do believe that there is NOTHING you can do to prevent someone from coming and shooting you, except make it worthless. The police don't stop mass murders today because most mafia-types don't go around shooting for no reason. It gains them nothing. I know, I grew up in a mob town (Rosemont, Illinois) -- these guys have enough trouble handing the property they currently have, hah.

My e-mail address is available without obfuscation. Send me an e-mail. As for being an activist, sorry, I don't want to activate anything. I don't want to convince anyone with just words -- my actions should be enough to give people pause to think if I'm doing something interesting. If my actions are benevolent, my words are useless. That's all that matters!

(I'd write more coherently but I am currently baby-sitting a tabloid-sized printer that keeps jamming, it's 3:00am!)

Re:DVD Shrink & TMPGenc (1)

jZnat (793348) | more than 7 years ago | (#17129978)

... I truly believe that most Christians have no clue about the Bible, because they sure don't live it. They're accepting the word of some egomaniacal "pastor" and then they teach their kids the mumbo jumbo that they learned. ...
Well, I think it's reasonable to think that you should be able to trust your pastor et al. when it comes to the Bible and the teachings of Jesus considering that's their life, but when people blindly follow without questioning, you get pastors who abuse that trust.

Re:DVD Shrink & TMPGenc (1)

JohnFluxx (413620) | more than 7 years ago | (#17131802)

The only trouble is that everyone disagrees with each other over which 5% you are supposed to follow :-)

Re:DVD Shrink & TMPGenc (1)

Phroggy (441) | more than 7 years ago | (#17135414)

Religion is one of the most hierarchical organizations on earth. It's a step beyond autocracy. Did you ever get to choose your leader? What makes it right for him to rule? Why does he have that power? Do you know that he's perfect, or just take his word for it?

While some religions and, indeed, some denominations of Christianity do have a hierarchical structure, please be aware that this is far from universally true. The church I am a member of did select our pastor (a search committee was formed to find one, they interviewed several candidates and made their recommendation to the congregation, and after getting to know him for awhile we all voted). Our church is affiliated with a regional association [cbnw.org] of churches of the same denomination, which provides a variety of resources including assistance with finding new pastors [cbnw.org], but they absolutely do not dictate who our leadership will be. Nor does the pastor have ultimate authority - he is there to serve the congregation, not the other way around.

Re:DVD Shrink & TMPGenc (1)

Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) | more than 7 years ago | (#17126758)

I'm an anarcho-capitalist Christian, so I actually don't pay attention to whatever laws you guys voted for.

In soviet^h^h^h^h^h^h democractic America,
laws pay attention to you!

1 Peter 2:13-17 (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 7 years ago | (#17128022)

I'm an anarcho-capitalist Christian, so I actually don't pay attention to whatever laws you guys voted for

How does 1 Peter 2:13-17 [nccbuscc.org] fit into your beliefs?

my use of "unlicensed products" probably sells more of it

Then explain this to the copyright owner in your letter seeking an offer. If they wanted to sell more of it, they would license clips to you.

Re:1 Peter 2:13-17 (1)

jZnat (793348) | more than 7 years ago | (#17130028)

I'm no scholar, but I think Peter is talking about being a martyr, not succumbing to draconian laws in general.

Re:1 Peter 2:13-17 (1)

dada21 (163177) | more than 7 years ago | (#17133802)

Good question! 1 Peter was written for the Jews who accepted Christ after His Resurrection and Ascension. Christ had told His followers that He would return quickly/soon/in their lives. Was He a liar? I don't think so. In order for the Great Commission to be fulfilled (and end with end of the old age/covenant), the Gentiles also needed to see an outward conversion, not just an inward conversion, in preparation for the coming of the New Convenant with man -- the Kingdom, as some of us call it.

I see 1 Peter as a witness to the Jews to make sure they stick together as Christ would be returning quickly, while many of them were alive. Because those early Christians were living under the Great Commission, they DID have to do things that we today don't have to do. Remember, though, that I am a prophecy-fulfilled Christian, not one of those "Left Behind" kind.

Re:1 Peter 2:13-17 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17142270)

Christians have an answer to everything, and they're all wrong.

Re:DVD Shrink & TMPGenc (1)

wangman25 (659226) | more than 7 years ago | (#17128200)

If you are using a Mac, download the free HandBrake. you can select which chapters you would like transcoded from the main feature or otherwise, and select some high-quality formats such as H.264 which can them be imported to iMovie

WWJR (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17132058)

What Would Jesus Rip?

Virtualdub (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17125344)

When I was recording tv shows and cutting commercials, I used Virtualdub. It's a pretty good AVI editor for quick cuts and stuff, but doesn't have much in the way of advanced editing (fades, wipes, etc...) capabilities. As long as the computer has the codec, it can handle any avi file, and if you use avisynth, I think you can also open anything that directshow has a demuxer and codecs for. Also, it can save video/audio in any format that there is an encoder for, but the container has to be AVI, so you may have to convert stuff to mpeg using something else depending on what you're trying to do.

DVD DEcryptor (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17125364)

DVD Decryptor to get the vob files onto your hard disk.
Don't enable internet update though as the Decryptor's original website got taken over by the RIAA who don't want you to use it..

Re:DVD DEcryptor (1)

trentfoley (226635) | more than 7 years ago | (#17126160)

There are many dvd titles out now that DVD Decrypter will not handle. However, another free tool called DVDFab Decrypter [dvdfab.com] does the trick.

I used to try DVD Decrypter first, and if it failed, then I'd use DVDFab Decrypter. I eventually stopped using DVD Decrypter entirely since so many discs were failing.

Re:DVD DEcryptor (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17127660)

You don't really have any problem with DVD Decryptor.
Just log the errors and run pgcedit with the PSL plugin wizard.
It does it automatically.

Re:DVD DEcryptor (1)

CastrTroy (595695) | more than 7 years ago | (#17128100)

Is there anything to stop studios from producing media which has errors throughout it and doesn't actually conform to the standard? Do the discs that DVD Decrypter fails with also fail to play in "legitimate" players such as PowerDVD, WinDVD, et al? I for one would be quite unhappy if I only had a computer to play my DVDs on, or brought some DVDs to watch on my laptop on the plane, and found that they wouldn't play because the movie studios think that people with the actual DVD are the pirates, when we all know the real pirates don't even bother renting or buying the movie, and just straight download it over the internet. I know with CDs they aren't allowed to use the CD-Audio logo unless it conforms to a specific standard, is it the same with DVDs? I've noticed some DVDs i've bought say they have copy protection, but is this kind of labelling mandatory? And can you tell which disks have this kind of protection when you go to rent them?

Re:DVD DEcryptor (2, Interesting)

LunaticTippy (872397) | more than 7 years ago | (#17131564)

Studios have been releasing defective DVDs for years. Most players deal OK but you need special ripping software.

Here [wikipedia.org] is one I had to deal with recently. You can't tell by the box if/what copy protection they have. There are half a dozen commercial schemes right now.

Simple (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17125494)

Cam-rip in the cinema. THEY CAN'T CATCH ALL OF US!

Oh, wait. You weren't advocating that. Nevermind.

"But I only stole the hubcaps!" (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17125498)

I don't know if you're the religious type (I assume so if you're volunteering for your church) but stealing short clips is still stealing. "Thou shall not steal" doesn't come with size qualifiers.

Producing a video for an audience to watch is even worse, you're basically using someone else's effort to create a product.

And soliciting advice on how to hack into DVDs is a violation of the DMCA, agree with it or not.

I'm not advocating discussion on how to best pirate films.

Are you sure??

Re:"But I only stole the hubcaps!" (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17125574)

Going to Hell working for the church: not sure if it's ironic or fitting. What happened? Did you get bored after the first seven commandments?

Re:"But I only stole the hubcaps!" (4, Insightful)

earnest murderer (888716) | more than 7 years ago | (#17125582)

Fair use covers the use of short clips in specific circumstances.

Also, copyright infringement is not theft.

Re:"But I only stole the hubcaps!" (1)

DorkusMasterus (931246) | more than 7 years ago | (#17130742)

To support what you wrote (from copyright.gov):


One of the rights accorded to the owner of copyright is the right to reproduce or to authorize others to reproduce the work in copies or phonorecords. This right is subject to certain limitations found in sections 107 through 118 of the Copyright Act (title 17, U. S. Code). One of the more important limitations is the doctrine of "fair use." Although fair use was not mentioned in the previous copyright law, the doctrine has developed through a substantial number of court decisions over the years. This doctrine has been codified in section 107 of the copyright law.

Section 107 contains a list of the various purposes for which the reproduction of a particular work may be considered "fair," such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research. Section 107 also sets out four factors to be considered in determining whether or not a particular use is fair:

*the purpose and character of the use, including whether such use is of commercial nature or is for nonprofit educational purposes;

*the nature of the copyrighted work;

*amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole; and

*the effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work.
The distinction between "fair use" and infringement may be unclear and not easily defined. There is no specific number of words, lines, or notes that may safely be taken without permission. Acknowledging the source of the copyrighted material does not substitute for obtaining permission.

The 1961 Report of the Register of Copyrights on the General Revision of the U.S. Copyright Law cites examples of activities that courts have regarded as fair use: "quotation of excerpts in a review or criticism for purposes of illustration or comment; quotation of short passages in a scholarly or technical work, for illustration or clarification of the author's observations; use in a parody of some of the content of the work parodied; summary of an address or article, with brief quotations, in a news report; reproduction by a library of a portion of a work to replace part of a damaged copy; reproduction by a teacher or student of a small part of a work to illustrate a lesson; reproduction of a work in legislative or judicial proceedings or reports; incidental and fortuitous reproduction, in a newsreel or broadcast, of a work located in the scene of an event being reported."

Copyright protects the particular way an author has expressed himself; it does not extend to any ideas, systems, or factual information conveyed in the work.

The safest course is always to get permission from the copyright owner before using copyrighted material. The Copyright Office cannot give this permission.

When it is impracticable to obtain permission, use of copyrighted material should be avoided unless the doctrine of "fair use" would clearly apply to the situation. The Copyright Office can neither determine if a certain use may be considered "fair" nor advise on possible copyright violations. If there is any doubt, it is advisable to consult an attorney. (Emphasis added by me)

Re:"But I only stole the hubcaps!" (2, Insightful)

arete (170676) | more than 7 years ago | (#17132020)

DorkusMasterus's comment is very informative about fair use. And I agree that copying is never stealing. (Note: IANAL)

HOWEVER:

The BIGGEST reason why the DMCA needs to be struck down is that it does an end-run around fair use. It is completely within fair use to use clips from a copyrighted work. It certainly depends on the amount, but sampling is definitely allowed.

What you _can't_ do under the DMCA is exactly what you're asking about: You can't circumvent copy protection no matter how trivial - and almost all commercial DVDs are encrypted. Under the DMCA (in the US only, of course) you can't legally do this EVEN IF YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO USE THE CLIP (under fair use) You can't even do this if YOU MADE the DVD. (Although presumably no one would sue you for that)

Strangely, this seems to mean that if someone anonymously sent you the clip you WOULD be able to use it. (I'm also not yet aware of a case where they went after anyone for viewing any number of "shared" files - to my knowledge they've only gone after claims that someone did the SHARING. But I think they have a potential traditional-copyright claim, it just doesn't give them the massive powers of the DCMA) Or if you recorded the clip from an analog or unencrypted digital video out on a legitimate DVD player. Or from a VCR. Note that HDMI is NOT unencrypted, which is why they want to put it on your devices and why you _don't_ want it - because that's not an output that you can legally decrypt stuff from unless you're an approved HDMI device.

 

Re:"But I only stole the hubcaps!" (1)

TechnicalPenguin (723245) | more than 7 years ago | (#17153482)

I fully agree that copyright infringement is not theft. Theft is when I take something away from you and you no longer have it. Copyright infringement is when I do something you don't like without your permission. The only thing I have taken away from you is your ability to say "No." But that's not the real problem here.

The problem here is that the fundamental point of DRM and the DMCA is to give copyright holders the ability to say "No" when nothing else will. Together, DRM and the DMCA enforce the wishes of the copyright holder even when those wishes go far beyond their legal rights. Fair use? It doesn't matter. Removing even a small amount of content from a DRM-protected DVD is strictly illegal under the DMCA no matter how you intend to use it. While fair use still exists as a defense against the charge of "copyright infringement," it is not a defense against the charge of (more-or-less) "safe-cracking" under the DMCA.

Look at it this way, making and using a copy of some content from a DVD potentially breaks two laws: Copyright and the DMCA. If it came to trial, you could claim that you weren't breaking the copyright law because your use falls under the category of Fair Use and, if you're lucky, the judge/jury would agree with you. However, in order to make that copy in the first place, you would have had to get past the DRM "proctection," which means that you have also broken the DMCA law. But, the DMCA does not recognize the Fair Use argument. If the DRM says you can't make a copy and you made a copy, then you've broken the law. Period. It doesn't matter how you planned to use that copy once you've made it, you've made and, therefore, you've broken the law under the DMCA. There's no excuse. There's no "wiggle room." There is no defense. You've lost. Game over. That's just one of many problems with this train-wreck of a law.

I know the OP tried to couch this request in the terms of Fair Use, but it's pointless. Fair Use only applies to your use of a copy. Making that copy, when it breaks past any form of DRM, is completely, totally, and strictly illegal under the DMCA. Period.

Re:"But I only stole the hubcaps!" (4, Insightful)

EzInKy (115248) | more than 7 years ago | (#17126330)


I don't know if you're the religious type (I assume so if you're volunteering for your church) but stealing short clips is still stealing. "Thou shall not steal" doesn't come with size qualifiers.


Funny thing is that no matter how large a portion he uses nothing is missing from the original work. Nothing missing, nothing stolen.


Producing a video for an audience to watch is even worse, you're basically using someone else's effort to create a product.


Nobody creates anything in a vacuum so every new work is based on someone else's effort.


And soliciting advice on how to hack into DVDs is a violation of the DMCA, agree with it or not.


Most religions require their followers to violate immoral laws.

Re:"But I only stole the hubcaps!" (1)

DutchUncle (826473) | more than 7 years ago | (#17137638)

Instead of equally faith-based "information wants to be free" dogma, how about realistic responses:

- Using short clips is allowed for reviews, for discussion in educational settings, etc., as long as you are clearly referencing the original work.
- Proper attribution and context makes the difference. It is the same as the difference between "quoting" and "plagarizing".

I presume you would acknowledge a difference between reading books and summarizing the knowledge into your own writing, photocopying the books and submitting the pages under your own name, and photocopying someone else's writing and submitting it under your own name. That's what copyright is. The fact that nothing is missing from the copied work, or that a self-written paper is based on CITED references anyway, has nothing to do with the concept that you are taking someone else's work and claiming that you did it.

If you want to release your work under the GPL and allow people to copy it, that's your right; OTOH if you want people to be able to get the money to make movies and shows that you like, you have to show your support for them by buying their results. It's a lot less direct than throwing a dollar into a busker's hat, and there are a lot of middlemen taking a cut, and I'd rather pay the band / director / producer myself and download it, but that's how the industry counts "votes" for a given product. Science fiction fans are mostly technogeeks, and they all know how to copy stuff, so fewer originals sell, so the industry says "Gee, I guess nobody liked this enough to buy it" and stops making it - or at least stops making *quality* stuff and focuses on the magic-wand stuff that people *do* buy.

Re:"But I only stole the hubcaps!" (1)

Mr2001 (90979) | more than 7 years ago | (#17140750)

If you want to release your work under the GPL and allow people to copy it, that's your right; OTOH if you want people to be able to get the money to make movies and shows that you like, you have to show your support for them by buying their results.

Not necessarily. You can also show your support by funding production. The advantage of doing it that way is it works whether or not copyright law exists or is enforced; you can always make money by selling your services, but making money by selling copies isn't easy in a world where anyone can make their own copies for free.

but that's how the industry counts "votes" for a given product.

Who cares how "the industry" wants to keep track? You don't have to conform to their standards just to get your "vote" counted; if they want to count inaccurately, that's their problem, not yours.

Re:"But I only stole the hubcaps!" (1)

DutchUncle (826473) | more than 7 years ago | (#17141646)

>>>You can also show your support by funding production. ... >>>>>>but that's how the industry counts "votes" for a given product. >>>Who cares how "the industry" wants to keep track? You don't have to conform to their standards just to get your "vote" counted; if they want to count inaccurately, that's their problem, not yours. I *do* throw money into buskers' hats. I *do* follow local bands and buy their CDs. That also means I patronize the places they play (that's why the places pay them to play there, after all). And if I like them enough to help them reach a wider audience, which means they can keep creating the music I like, and the way to do that is through radio or distribution by bigger companies already in the business, then I have to try to convince those existing players in "the industry" to listen - and what they listen to most is money. It's easier than ever for a local niche band to reach the world. But they'll still only reach a little NICHE of the world. And if someone puts up mp3s of all of their stuff, and nobody needs to buy their CDs, then they don't have money to pay their rent. That's why copyright exists. I already said: there are too many layers of middlemen and the artists don't get enough of the result. Now that you can have a kiosk burn a CD on the spot rather than invest in stockpiling pre-made CDs, the economics should change, except there are already record stores that don't want to die and employees who don't want to be out of work. Buggy-whip manufacturers couldn't legislate against cars; the music business is somehow managing to convince people to legislate against change in their industry. All of this IS our problem, because they're protecting their turf by changing interpretations of law and diminishing our rights. Most people speed on the highway because it usually seems safe to go faster, but if you get caught you get a ticket; lots of people ignore these laws too because they seem useless, but we should be fighting the laws instead of ignoring them because as they get enforced they will change the way everything works. When everything has DRM because the law has started requiring it, we won't even own our own creations.

Re:"But I only stole the hubcaps!" (1)

Mr2001 (90979) | more than 7 years ago | (#17141858)

It's easier than ever for a local niche band to reach the world. But they'll still only reach a little NICHE of the world. And if someone puts up mp3s of all of their stuff, and nobody needs to buy their CDs, then they don't have money to pay their rent. That's why copyright exists.

You're assuming that the only way they can make money is by selling CDs.

But why would that be? Are they such bad performers that no one wants to see them live? Is the quality of their work so unpredictable that no one is willing to pay them to record another song without hearing it first? If so, then maybe they shouldn't be in the music business; if not, then they don't need copyright, because they can charge directly for their work.

Re:"But I only stole the hubcaps!" (1)

DutchUncle (826473) | more than 7 years ago | (#17144912)

Sorry, from what you've been saying I have to assume you don't know the realities. My brother-in-law is in a local band doing original songs as well as covers, and one of my colleagues plays jazz piano three nights each weekend. All of the musicians I know have fulltime day jobs, because the amount that local places pay for an evening's gig wouldn't cover a day's housing in this area, and if you plan to eat you need even more money. Producing a "concert" means putting up a lot of money up front to rent the hall. When I was a teenager in the 60s that was cheaper; now you need insurance and bonds and stuff, on top of the rent being a lot higher to start with.

So the answer is, No, I don't think people can make a go of it just being paid directly, until they get to some kind of critical mass. Especially today. Maybe that's why the archetypes of the starving artist and the minstrel busking for food are such cliches.

Don't get me wrong - I want to be able to copy my CDs so I can use them in the car, and change them to MP3s for my player, and do other things that should be fair use because I paid for the original CD fair and square. I oppose DRM that tries to make me pay for every format . . . though I did buy CDs of things I already had on vinyl. And the music industry doesn't make music, it makes recordings.

I certainly prefer to buy things directly from musicians where possible. Hell, even if you go to a show, you're paying a middleman - the venue expects a cover, or a rental, or at least good sales of food an drink, and if they don't see it's worthwhile they won't invite that group back, so you can't just show up and listen without spending something.

Re:"But I only stole the hubcaps!" (1)

Mr2001 (90979) | more than 7 years ago | (#17154690)

All of the musicians I know have fulltime day jobs, because the amount that local places pay for an evening's gig wouldn't cover a day's housing in this area, and if you plan to eat you need even more money. [...] So the answer is, No, I don't think people can make a go of it just being paid directly, until they get to some kind of critical mass.

Have you considered the possibility that the musicians you know haven't reached the point in their lives yet where they should be trying to sustain themselves as musicians?

People seem to have the idea that if you enjoy playing music, but you can't make a living at it, then something's wrong with the system and the law needs to be changed to make it easier for you. But clearly we don't have that expectation in any other field. Very few high school athletes will be able to play professionally as adults, but we don't consider that a problem, do we? Just as most of those players need to realize that football will always be a hobby for them, not a career, a lot of musicians need to realize the same thing about music.

Re:"But I only stole the hubcaps!" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17126600)

No, it isn't. If he'd shoplifted the DVD from WalMart then, yes, it would be stealing. Duplicating data (that he already owns a copy of if he bought the DVD) - is not theft.

If he was charging admission and was making a profit, then he might have problems. Otherwise, there ought to be no (moral) issues showing a clip to make a point as part of a presentation. The "law" be damned, he's not depriving them of revenue when he's potentially advocating the movie to people who may want to find and watch it later, based on his recommendation.

Besides, it's not like the movie studios respect copyrights [boingboing.net] themselves.

why did you all assume he was planning to steal? (1)

Wilk4 (632760) | more than 7 years ago | (#17155694)

Before you assumed he was stealing the clips, did you all even ask if his church has the CCLI licenses?

Many churches (like mine for instance) purchase licenses from CCLI or others to give rights to do things like copying sheet music for choir, worship bands, etc, playing other's music, either led by choir/band, or from CD/DVD..

And, if you have the right licenses, you are legally allowed to use of video in various ways, whether clips, playing a movie for a crowd, etc.

Without those licenses, you are in violation of law or license just playing most movie DVDs to a group of people larger than some set (small) number.

Yes, I'm sure that CCLI and other licensers don't cover every possible piece of music or video, and that you might have to get rights to use some things elsewhere... but it is possible to legally use such things if you are willing to do the work and pay what is needed.

... but did you all give him any benefit of doubt on having the right licenses before you all started saying he was going to be stealing?

Or was everyone so eager to jump into the typical slashdot arguments about whether stealing/using this digital material was right/wrong/evil/etc, whether the laws were bad and all that?

I smell a dirty b@stard (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17125640)

Hah.. the dirty lil b@stard wants to store kiddie pr0n on to his handphone. screw him.

Well if it's anything like the internet (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17125780)

Just grab them off the shelf and run.

Video Capture/TV tuner card (1)

wickedsteve (729684) | more than 7 years ago | (#17125994)

I plug a player into the video input on my computer. A lot of TV tuner cards have video capture.

Macrovision (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 7 years ago | (#17128384)

I plug a player into the video input on my computer.A lot of TV tuner cards have video capture.

Those two vertical bars you see on your screen mean "paused". TV tuner cards sold in the United States after October 1998 halt recording when they detect a Macrovision signal.

MEncoder (4, Informative)

Dutch_Cap (532453) | more than 7 years ago | (#17126420)

MEncoder (the media encoder that comes with mplayer) should be able to do this pretty easily.

mencoder -oac copy -ovc copy -ss <START> -endpos <END> dvd://<CHAPTER> -of mpeg -o <FILENAME>.mpg
..will copy part of the video to an mpeg file, where START and END are formatted as [[HOURS:]MINUTES:]SECONDS. Note that -endpos is relative to the starting position, it's not the position in the file.

Re:MEncoder (2, Informative)

simm1701 (835424) | more than 7 years ago | (#17126572)

There is a problem in doing this with MPEG4 clibs in that you have to start at a key frame otherwise it gets a little messy

Its a little easier with DVDs since there are usually 2 key frames per second (or more) where as MPEG4 will usually only have a key frame once every 10 seconds (240 frames) or on scene changes.

If you want to take a section of a MPEG4 clip (or even from a DVD if you are getting problems) you can tell mplayer to re-encode a larger section of the file (atleast 30 seconds either side of what you want) using raw audio and a key frame every frame. This will produce a very large file - but its only temporary and will enable you to grab the subsection that you want without the usual video mess the above command will give you.

Mplayer also has a method of printing out exactly where the key frames are, I can't remember it exactly off hand but its in the man page so shouldn't be hard to find. One problem I have found with mplayer is its granularity is seconds - atleast on the version I last used. I don't know of a way to specify timings by frame number (I would love to hear of a way if there is one!)

Re:MEncoder (1)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | more than 7 years ago | (#17133742)

Mplayer also has a method of printing out exactly where the key frames are, I can't remember it exactly off hand but its in the man page so shouldn't be hard to find. One problem I have found with mplayer is its granularity is seconds - atleast on the version I last used. I don't know of a way to specify timings by frame number (I would love to hear of a way if there is one!)

It sounds like mplayer could use a -nearest-keyframe option to find the appropriate frame close to your -ss value. Does that exist?

Re:MEncoder (1)

simm1701 (835424) | more than 7 years ago | (#17143240)

iirc that is the default behaviour for playback in mplayer - it looks for a key frame to start playing from, starting at the position you specify

However mplayer copies from the exact second you tell it, though you can get mypler to list the numbers for the key frames.

I would be very happy if mencoder simply allowed you to specify start and end frames rather than only seconds

When copying DVD's is outlawed... (1)

TempeTerra (83076) | more than 7 years ago | (#17126962)

Please keep in mind that I am not interested in something that would copy a full-length film, nor am I'm not advocating discussion on how to best pirate films. What utilities would you use to retrieve short clips from DVDs and other digital sources?"

Regardless of your good intentions, I don't think that you'll find any officially sanctioned programs that will let you copy part of a DVD. Even if you restrict yourself to the most obvious fair use, you'll still have to do it with the same tools the pirates use. Perhaps someone will prove me wrong, but I won't be holding my breath.

"When copying DVD's is outlawed, only outlaws will be able to copy DVD's."

VirtualDub? (1)

Bazman (4849) | more than 7 years ago | (#17127178)

Running on Windows, Virtual Dub (Free) will let you take movie files and clip them whilst re-encoding the audio or video and resizing and filtering them too.

DivX/Xvid (1)

Lord_Dweomer (648696) | more than 7 years ago | (#17131226)

What does everybody use for grabbing clips from DivX/Xvid files? Is there a way to grab a clip and automatically resave it as a new Divx/Xvid file? This would be a huge help for making AMVs from downloaded anime as well as splitting up the scenes in my um....personal...movie collection.

Illumination (3, Funny)

HTH NE1 (675604) | more than 7 years ago | (#17133106)

You could go the traditional church route and get a bunch of monks to "illuminate" the excerpts you want by having them painstakingly reproduce each frame by hand and scan each frame back into a computer and sequence it for full motion playback. Get a few more trained in the foley arts and some excellent impressionists to get the soundtrack.

With the man hours involved, no one would dare accuse you of exploiting the works for profit.

see afterdawn for all your dvd needs (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17135038)

afterdawn is a great site with all kinds of tutorials, forums and links to free utilities.

http://www.afterdawn.com/ [afterdawn.com]
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