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PC Magazine: A Far Worse Attack [movie studios vs. DeCSS]

Aug 28, 2000, 21:24 (3 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Michael J. Miller)

"The Napster case is important, but it's nothing compared with another lawsuit brought by the movie studios against the proprietors of www.2600.com... I understand the reason the movie studios are upset, and I certainly believe they are entitled to their copyrights. I also believe that consumers are entitled to their rights under the copyright act and that copyright law should not supersede all the other laws we have."

"This case is raising a number of issues that are very troubling. Most of these issues deal with the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, which Congress passed in 1998 in an attempt to define copyright in a digital age. That act made it a crime to offer to the public a way to decrypt copyrighted material. The act sounds well and good, but in practice it's far from clean."

"My biggest concern is the contention that the act prevents even the discussion of how to decrypt the code. Excuse me? That seems like a huge infringement on our First Amendment rights. Discussing how some form of encryption works seems a fair topic to me, and I sure don't want the government telling me I can't discuss it. I'm also worried about the contention that 2600 shouldn't even be able to point to the code if it's on someone else's site. Again, pointing strikes me as journalism, not publishing."

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