The REAL land of the free

Oh say, can you see... that Canada rocks?

"A desperate American recording industry is waging a fierce fight against digital copyright infringement seemingly oblivious to the fact that, for practical purposes, it lost the digital music sharing fight over five years ago. In Canada. "

Full article:

http://techcentralstation.com/081803...

Sorry but lately the US is sucking in the "Freedoms" department.

So being allowed to steal = freedom?

Not at all.

Sorry but lately the US is sucking in the ""Freedoms"" department.

To quote my favorite person on this subject:

"ralcydan" wrote:

Why does everyone trying to justify stealing music make themselves sound like Thomas Jefferson?

I think this particular dead horse has been beaten enough. But I am curious what exact freedom you are talking about that the US is so cruelly depriving people of?

But I am curious what exact freedom you are talking about that the US is so cruelly depriving people of?

Well, I was mainly referring to the DMCA, the problem with patents, and in a lesser degree to the Patriot Act.

I wonder if you guys see these as threats too, or do you think it''s all normal? I''m seeing it from a total outsider perspective, I guess. But it really worries me, because Mexico tends to take examples from the US...

(I''m also pro-legalization of marihuana, which is something that Canada achieved a few years ago, but that''s a whole ''nother subject. )

I was mainly referring to the DMCA, the problem with patents, and in a lesser degree to the Patriot Act.

I wonder if you guys see these as threats too

Not particularly. The DMCA doesn''t infringe on anyone''s rights. I am not sure what problem with patents you are talking about. And I challenge anyone to cite a case where the Patriot Act has taken away freedom from anyone.

DMCA directly goes against the right of free expression. Or do you not remember the lawsuits over the DVD code or Dimitry''s arrest just because he pronounced a security hole in the Adobe''s software?

Or do you not remember the lawsuits over the DVD code

I don''t know what specifically you are talking about. DMCA specifically deals with instances of copyright infringement.

Dimitry''s arrest just because he pronounced a security hole in the Adobe''s software

Define ""pronounced"".

Dmitry''s case :

http://www.eff.org/IP/DMCA/US_v_Elco...

You can also search google for information on DeCSS (The DVD case that LeapingGnome mentioned).

I''ve not explored the whole EFF site, but I imagine there will be links all sorts of wacky hijinks that tech companies have successfully patented. The Amazon 1 Click thing, the online auction patent, etc...

Thanks for the link Mex, very informative. I didn''t know about that case.

For the record, Dmitry wasn''t charged for ""pronouncing a security hole in Adobe software"". He and his company were charged for trafficking in software whose primary purpose was to circumvent copyright protectionfor financial gain.

DMCA directly goes against the right of free expression.

So the question is, are all activities like this ""free expression""? How about writing viruses and worms? Free expression is not an absolute right, especially when your free expression causes harm to others. Again, Dmitry could have written this software without penalty - it was only by profiting from the sale of it that brought criminal action.

I still don''t see how this infringes on anyone''s rights. I can stand on the corner singing Aretha Franklin all day long, but that doesn''t give me the right to record ""Natural Woman"" and sell it without obtaining permission.

"Ulairi" wrote:

So being allowed to steal = freedom?

No, being allowed to make personal copies with DRM getting in the way is freedom.

Other than that, the article is a pile of crap. I don''t think you could convince any court that copying a file from another machine could be considered a ""private copy."" Since the original media is ""private,"" just the act of putting it on a publicly-accessible server places it in the public domain. Whoever created it and whoever purchased it are still the only rightful holders.

Currie''s argument makes as much sense as plagarism.

"Ulairi" wrote:

So the question is, are all activities like this ""free expression""? How about writing viruses and worms?

Writing anything (worm, music, cookie recipe, bad poetry) is free expression, but purposely letting something destructive loose is criminal. If it wasn''t for this distinction, science would still be in the Dark Ages.

BTW I just saw this:

Orson Scott Card''s take on MP3 file sharing.

Bow to the master.

http://www.ornery.org/essays/warwatc...

Oh, I also realize it''s not like anyone''s going to go ""Oh, semi-famous-SF-author has spoken! Everyone, let''s stop the madness and hug!"", but... come on! Ender''s Game!

My favorite part of the article:

Copyright © 2003 by Orson Scott Card.
"ralcydan" wrote:

For the record, Dmitry wasn''t charged for ""pronouncing a security hole in Adobe software"". He and his company were charged for trafficking in software whose primary purpose was to circumvent copyright protectionfor financial gain.

Wrong. In every way. He wrote and sold the software in Russia, that is not covered by US law. He was arrested because he was presenting a whitepaper at a conference in the US on exactly how Adobe''s copy protection is broken.

The DMCA has also been used by Lexmark to threaten people who make inkjet refills or cartridges for inkjets. They placed a few bytes of ""copy-protection"" code (which was useless, but counted as copy-protection nonetheless) in thier cartridges and now anyone who makes competitive products is traffing in copy-protection circumvention devices. Even though there isn''t anything copyrighted about Lexmark inkjet cartridges.

The DMCA has also been used by Wal-Mart to keep people from posting thier sales fliers on the internet before the sales happen. Because the prices of thier goods are copyrighted.

"ralcydan" wrote:

DMCA specifically deals with instances of copyright infringement.

The DMCA makes it illegal to make products that are designed to circumvent copy protection, that was it''s primary purpose. Hence ""Digital"". The copyright/subpoena thing is sort of a rider.

And as for the patent thing, I am curious, what do you do for a living? Do you create copyrighted or patentable material? I really am suprised you haven''t heard about the whole patent mess.

Things such as ""a method for selling things over the internet"" are patented. Not a particular method, just a method. Anything. If you do basic things that have a ridiculous amount of prior art there''s a good chance it can be patented, simply because it''s on a computer. The patent office just doesn''t do thier job 99% of the time and things slip through the cracks all the time. For instance, Microsoft just got sued all to hell and back by a research group somewhere who says MS infringed on thier patents for ""plugins in browsers"". Not to mention the ridiculous amount of prior art there was before thier patent was granted, or that MS has been redistributing browsers that have plugin support since version 4 (or that Netscape has been doing it since who knows when).

"ralcydan" wrote:

My favorite part of the article:

Copyright © 2003 by Orson Scott Card.

Actually my favorite part was where he didn''t sue me for posting a link to his article.

I am also suprised that nobody noticed why you can do these things in Canada. You pay a tax on all blank media. Not only does this assume that you''re a pirate when you want to use blank media, it''s socialism. Socialized entertainment. It''s not even compulsory licensing, everybody who makes copies of anything pays the **AA groups. While I would enjoy the ability to know that I can make as many copies of anything I want and still be paying the copyright holders (and occasionally the artists), I just don''t like the way that''s setup.

"ralcydan" wrote:

I think this particular dead horse has been beaten enough. But I am curious what exact freedom you are talking about that the US is so cruelly depriving people of?

Obviously not enough since you still think that quote is even remotely relevant

People who talk about freedom don''t care about copyright infringement, they want thier fair use back. Laws like the DMCA make fair use illegal when copy-protection is used, because it''s illegal to circumvent it for whatever purpose.

Pyro is right about the Dmitri case. There was another one where they tried to arrest a professor for publishing encryption code line by line on his web page (for violating encryption export guidelines)

I agree that the DMCA is being used in manners it was not intended. I agree that the Patriot act is being used in ways it was not intended. I agree that some patents are too generalized and therefore unenforceable.

But I am still fervently against downloading content that you did not pay for. I actually agree with OSC about fair use and the idiocy of paying multiple times for content on different media. But that is a situation where you have already paid the content creator for his efforts.

Just my 2 cents.

ralcydan wrote:
For the record, Dmitry wasn''t charged for ""pronouncing a security hole in Adobe software"". He and his company were charged for trafficking in software whose primary purpose was to circumvent copyright protection for financial gain.

Pyroman[FO] wrote:
Wrong. In every way. He wrote and sold the software in Russia, that is not covered by US law. He was arrested because he was presenting a whitepaper at a conference in the US on exactly how Adobe''s copy protection is broken.

From Mex''s link:

This is a criminal prosecution brought under section 1204 of 17 USC by the United States Department of Justice. To convict Dmitry and/ or ElcomSoft and trigger the criminal penalties in the DMCA, the government must prove that they acted willfullyand for the purposes of commercial advantage or private financial gain.

From the FBI complaint:

I believe Dmitry Sklyarov, employee of Elcomsoft and the individual listed on the Elcomsoft software products as the copyright holder of the program sold and produced by Elcomsoft, known as the Advanced eBook Processor, has willfully andfor financial gainimported, offered to the public, provided, and otherwise trafficked in a technology, product, service, and device that is primarily designed or produced for the purpose of circumvention a technological measure that effectively controls access to a work

The Section of US Code:

Section 1204. Criminal offenses and penalties

(a) In General. - Any person who violates section 1201 or 1202
willfullyand for purposes of commercial advantage or private
financial gain
-
(1) shall be fined not more than $500,000 or imprisoned for not
more than 5 years, or both, for the first offense; and
(2) shall be fined not more than $1,000,000 or imprisoned for
not more than 10 years, or both, for any subsequent offense.

I stand by the statement.

Also, Dmitry was arrested as an employee of Elcomsoft - a US company distributing this software for financial gain.

Heh, I remember how the SCUMMVM project was threatened by LucasArts. Note: these guys are writing an emulator so you can run older adventures on modern PCs. LucasArts accused them of violating the DMCA. They then asked LucasArts how and where they are supposed to have done that. That was ages ago, they still haven''t received any response so far.

"ralcydan" wrote:

I stand by the statement.

You stood by the part that was true. I never argued that he wasn''t doing it for financial gain, there''s money to be made creating software to let blind people read ebooks. The charges were brought against him by Adobe and he was arrested at the conference while on stage. The ""conspiracy to commit circumvention"" is the whitepaper.

Also looks like the DMCA subpoena powers might get fixed. Hurrah!

I''d also like to say Johnny that I agree with you on the not downloading copyrighted material stuff. I know I argue against copyright all the time, but I want reform. I''m not trying to encourage people to go download stuff illegally, because that just puts off the problem.

The charges were brought against him by Adobe and he was arrested at the conference while on stage. The ""conspiracy to commit circumvention"" is the whitepaper.

Also, from Mex''s link:

Was Dmitry arrested because of the speech he gave at DEF CON?

No. He was arrested for allegedly trafficking in software which could circumvent the technological protection on eBooks in Adobe''s eBook format.

1) Adobe didn''t bring any charges - that was done by the U.S. Attorney and the Department of Justice. Dmitry was actually indicyed by Grand Jury.
2) The conspiracy charge is only one of five charges - the rest directly charge him with trafficking.
3) The conspiracy charge was part of a grand jury indictment - it had nothing to do with his arrest.

4 out of 5 of his charges were for trafficking, and his initial arrest was not for conspiracy. The idea that he was arrested for presenting a white paper is absolutely wrong.

1) Adobe didn''t bring any charges - that was done by the U.S. Attorney and the Department of Justice. Dmitry was actually indicyed by Grand Jury.

Adobe was the company who initially notified the DoJ and asked for the arrest, but then afterwards because of the huge amount of public outcry they backed off and refused to press charges.

"ralcydan" wrote:

4 out of 5 of his charges were for trafficking, and his initial arrest was not for conspiracy. The idea that he was arrested for presenting a white paper is absolutely wrong.

You are right about that, and I jumped the gun in the first post. It still doesn''t change the fact that he is being charged with the crime of presenting a whitepaper. If all the other charges were dropped he would still go to jail for doing that. It is illegal to make digital lockpicks, or even talk about making them, even when you''re not doing it to facilitate copyright infringement. He was doing it to help blind people read ebooks, something which Adobe refused to do. How is that not fair use? Why are physical locks different, when they can be potentially much more damaging? After all, when you decrypt a DVD you can''t go to the actors house and kill them, when you pick thier locks you can. Yet lockpicks are legal and magazines revewing security products, which includes details of how the systems work, are protected free-speech.

Another bit of DMCA abuse the DOD contractor Torch Concepts, who blew the whistle on JetBlue giving away it''s customer''s personal information is now giving ""cease and desist"" letters citing the DMCA and copyright infringement, in an effort by Torch Concepts and JetBlue to destroy every bit of evidence that it ever happened. Obviously the knowledge of how they sold thier customer''s personal information without thier consent is precious art and should be protected at all costs. After all, if JetBlue goes around doing bad things and the public knows about it, how will they make thier living? < /sarcasm >

I wish they would just hurry up and get the PC version of ITunes out there.

You know why they haven''t, don''t you?

The record companies wanted time to do their big media scare. ITunes isn''t out on the PC right now because they are making an effort to clean out everyone''s hard drives so everyone will re-download them for cash.

Which is all fine by me. I actually admire the move.

If ITunes is all it''s said to be, I think all this hot air is going to die down. Once the record company is bringing in ALL SORTS of cash from this new market, they should go back to the mile high club and leave us all alone.

I think most people won''t have a problem with 99 cents a song. Once it''s finally made available.