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EON.Law.Harvard.edu: John Young's First Hand account of DeCSS trial

Jul 19, 2000, 13:58 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by John Young)

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"After the judge's refusal to recuse, the day was taken with examination of Michael Shamos by Charles Sims of Proskauer and cross-examination by Marty Garbus. Examination covered the stuff of his deposition, with demo of movies for comparison of DVD with the DivX Shamos got from the Net. Or so he claimed to have gotten, while it was actually obtained by his assistant, Eric Burns, a student at CMU, who was present and ran the Sony VAIO demo."

"Under cross-examination by Marty Garbus, Shamos the phony expert, admitted he could not have conducted his test for MPAA without the skill and help of real expert, Eric Burns. As a result Burns is now to become a witness to tell what he actually did to get the DivX, get it decoded synchronized and playable. Shamos looked swell while being examined by Proskauer and got blown away by Garbus. Even the judge took a few whacks, and approved Frank Stevenson and Eric Burns as witnesses over Proskauer's objections."

"Shamos makes up to $700,000 a year testifying as an expert witness at an hourly rate, $400; and says he pays Burns $100 per hour. During a break attempts were made to get Burns to discuss his work for Shamos; he said he'd be fired if he did. He said he expected to be vilified back at CMU when his role is publicized. An attempt is to be made to bring him over to the angel side."

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