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The Courts Government Censorship News

Anti-Piracy Labeling Bill in Works 303

Posted by chrisd
from the compromising-freedom dept.
Rinisari writes "Just posted on news.com.com is an article with more on the bill that could make all digital consumer products be required to be labeled with information regarding any anti-piracy technology within the device. Senator Ron Wyden, D-OR, will be the primary sponser of the bill (he's also got a text-only site)."
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Anti-Piracy Labeling Bill in Works

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  • Actually.. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by mindstrm (20013) on Wednesday February 19, 2003 @09:11PM (#5340505)
    it says he is "close" to releasing a bill that "might" require labeling.
    • Re:Actually.. (Score:3, Informative)

      by devaldez (310051)
      Waaaayyyy better than is colleague in Oregon, Gordon Smith, who appears to be the next RIAA/MPAA supporter.

      Maybe Wyden will rub off on Smith...until then, bombard Smith with anti-MPAA/RIAA mail and informed information. Perhaps we can get a convert in the form of the Senior Senator from the state of Oregon.
      • Re:Actually.. (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Obliterous (466068) <shawn@somers.gmail@com> on Wednesday February 19, 2003 @10:56PM (#5340990) Homepage Journal
        until then, bombard Smith with anti-MPAA/RIAA mail and informed information

        How about You just leave out the anti-whatever E-mail?

        And dont bombard him, bombarding someone just ensures that they take shelter from your bombardment.

        Instead, try and educate the man. present an UNBIASED viewpoint and use FACTS.
        if you flood the man with propoganda, he's just going to run to the MPAA/RIAA money even faster.

        Tell His constituents what he's doing, and EDUCATE THEM!

        Take an inteligent aproach, and he MIGHT listen to you.

        And for you residents of Oregon, Call His office, send him mail (NOT E-mail), Tell him what you think of his actions, and be sure your vote reflects your opinion the next time he comes up for election.

        Act like a freak/fanatic, and he will respond to you accordingly.

        Act like an inteligent person, and he might actually listen to you.
        • Re:Actually.. (Score:4, Insightful)

          by devaldez (310051) <devaldez.comcast@net> on Thursday February 20, 2003 @12:27AM (#5341412) Homepage Journal
          While I generally agree in principle with your recommendations, having spoken with the man, I can tell you that he has a very focused opinion that is not to be confused with facts or reasonable discussion.

          Politicians who are focused and supportive of certain industries are generally ruled by hype and money...if you only have considered opinions and no capital, you are welcome to express yourself and will in no way influence these folks.

          On other issues the Senior Senator is considered and thoughtful, even erudite and reasonable. In this place, he has been won over by the RIAA/MPAA twins to believe that if he doesn't protect their content, then he will compromise all intellectual property derived in the US. It is an argument that will not be won except by the voice of his constituents.

          As a citizen of Oregon, I can tell you I've seen far more responsive government representatives from Arizona (still have the letter from John McCain where he corrected my beliefs about his encryption legislation) than from Oregon.

          I won't recommend voting against a candidate for a single issue, but I do believe that we must make it clear to him the nature of his misinformation, and if that includes sending him snail mail and discussing these at town meetings at every opportunity, then I will...

          Never suggested being a freak/fanatic, but I can see how I mis-communicated my thoughts.
        • Re:Actually.. (Score:3, Informative)

          by indiigo (121714)
          Actually, I'm from Oregon, and Wyden responds personally to e-mail with constructive comments.
        • And for you residents of Oregon, Call His office,

          Never thought Oregon was heaven on earth, unless of course, He has opened branch offices all over the world.

  • Labeling (Score:5, Funny)

    by kramer2718 (598033) on Wednesday February 19, 2003 @09:11PM (#5340508) Homepage
    Wow, to think Tipper Gore has something in common with most /.ers.
    • Re:Labeling (Score:5, Insightful)

      by OMEGA Power (651936) on Wednesday February 19, 2003 @09:43PM (#5340662) Journal
      The difference is that the Tipper Gore wanted things labelled based on something that is not clearly definded (i.e. what is offensive or innapropriate for children) whereas does this cd have copy-protection is a clear cut technilogical question. In addition it is generally accepted that the ultimate goal of Tipper's group was to force retailers to refuse to sell music marked objectionable to minors whereas copy-prevention labeling would be strictly for the purpose of informing potentional buyers, what they can or can't do with a cd (without cracking the protection, of course).
      • For Tipper Gore:
        My Journal [slashdot.org] is not appropriate for minors.

        For those that are going to use my journal:

        You need a web browser to view my journal.

        --gal

  • Whew.. (Score:5, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 19, 2003 @09:11PM (#5340509)
    For a second, I thought they meant "pro-piracy". I was wondering if this would require Adaptec to start shipping copies of EZ CD Creator Pro letting consumers know that "WARNING, THIS APPLICATION CAN LET YOU COPY YOUR ELITE H4CKED COPY OF MSWORD ONTO CD-R'S! PURCHASE AT YOUR OWN RISK!"
  • Not a bad idea (Score:5, Insightful)

    by dreamchaser (49529) on Wednesday February 19, 2003 @09:12PM (#5340515) Homepage Journal
    On the face of things, this sounds like a good step. Companies are certainly free to incorporate DRM or other anti-piracy features, but consumers should be equiped with all the information they need to make a sound choice. That will make it easier for people to vote with their wallets.

    Unfortunately, it probably won't stop most of the unwashed masses from buying the latest [fill in the name of the flavor du 'jour] CD.
    • Re:Not a bad idea (Score:5, Informative)

      by xylon (552609) on Wednesday February 19, 2003 @09:22PM (#5340571)
      I was at HMV the other day, and had an option of two CDs I wanted to buy. One was Massive Attack - 100th Window, and the other Nick Cave - Nocturama. I figured, since I'd already heard Nocturama, and hadn't heard 100th Window, I'd get the latter. That is, until I saw the Copy Protection sticker on the back of the CD Case, after which I put it down, and bought Nick Cave instead.

      Of course, had there been no copy protection sticker/warning, I would probably have ended up with 100th Window (it was cheaper!). It's good to know, certainly - I don't want a crippled CD that may or may not play in my computer, cd player, dvd player, whatever; let's hope all recording labels follow suit.
      • Re:Not a bad idea (Score:2, Insightful)

        by EverDense (575518)
        So Massive Attack feel its OK for them to "sample" other people.
        BUT we can't "sample" them.

        Hypocrites!
        ...and don't give me that "Its the record company doing it" bullshit.
      • Yeah, since I rip every single CD I own to my mp3 server, then burn a copy so my original never leaves my 301 disc changer, I had issues with them copy protecting their new CD. It was easy to find a copy on newsgroups, though, so someone figured out how to get around it. Maybe I'll pick up a copy protection free vinyl copy.
    • Re:Not a bad idea (Score:4, Interesting)

      by Anonvmous Coward (589068) on Wednesday February 19, 2003 @09:53PM (#5340724)
      "ompanies are certainly free to incorporate DRM or other anti-piracy features, but consumers should be equiped with all the information they need to make a sound choice."

      Just to add to that, I think it'd force companies to charge less money for restricted (I hate the word protection in this context) materials. I won't buy a Music CD that won't work in my computer. But if the restricted CD were say $5 less, well then I'd consider it.

      It's a pity, these corps have a wonderful opportunity here to gain user acceptance of crippled CD's.

      "We're doing this to thwart piracy in order to make our business more profitable. As a pre-emptive reward, we're lowering the price of our products. Support anti-piracy steps, and we'll pass some of the savings on to you."

      Yeah, I know, it's not likely to happen. But a price drop for those particular materials would let people vote with their wallets. "So... we lowered the price of CD's and made more money, weird. But, this album isn't restricted and it made a greater profit, wow."

      • Re:Not a bad idea (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Swaffs (470184)
        If the restricted CD were $5 less, than people might start buying it instead of the more pricey one, and that would cut way further into profits than piracy does. Unless the RIAA actually believes they're losing as much money to piracy as they claim, it won't be worth their while. They just want to take as much as possible, and they can't do that by lowering prices.
      • Re:Not a bad idea (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Alsee (515537)
        I think it'd force companies to charge less money for restricted materials.

        You are going to force them to charge LESS for a product that costs them MORE to produce? They have spent a fortune developing, licening, and implementing these restriction systems.

        Has it dawned on you that it also implies that you are forcing them to charge MORE for normal CD's?

        Even if we assume they initially started by reducing the cost of crippled content they will quickly apply "inflation" and set the price of crippled disks however they want and you are unforcing a surcharge for normal products.

        -
    • Unfortunately, it probably won't stop most of the unwashed masses from buying the latest [fill in the name of the flavor du 'jour] CD.

      Well, considering how well labeling cigarettes has worked to prevent people from giving themselves cancer, just because it's cool, I'm guessing that labels on crippled anti-piracy will have about as much of an effect.

      Of course, if we could get a lawsuit going against companies that cripple their products, win many millions and have some of that money mandated to be used against the companies we just won it from we could be just like the anti-tobacco people. However, I'm not sure the big tobacco companies have done anything to prevent cancerous side-effects of smoking, either. So maybe that isn't the best plan in the world.

  • About time! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 19, 2003 @09:13PM (#5340516)
    It's about time somebody stepped up to the plate. This kind of legislation is necessary if we are to even maintain the concept of consumer rights. How can a consumer make a decision on what to buy if it isn't labelled sufficiently?

    Good luck on this bill!
    • Re:About time! (Score:3, Interesting)

      by absurdhero (614828)
      I wonder what the real meat of the bill is (or will end up being). This might just be some candy added in to gain enough support to pass. Situations like this do happen often.
  • No Big Deal (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Bueller_007 (535588) on Wednesday February 19, 2003 @09:13PM (#5340517)
    At first I thought this was a terrific idea. But you know that the majority of buyers are people who don't understand what the consequences are.

    And further, as the technology becomes more and more popular, eventually, won't EVERY product have one of these labels on it?

    Although this act seems like it could be a step in the right direction, I think it should be cut down before it wastes (American) tax-payers dollars.
    • by ObviousGuy (578567) <ObviousGuy@hotmail.com> on Wednesday February 19, 2003 @09:21PM (#5340568) Homepage Journal
      Even though Sony explains clearly in little print on the back of the Memory Stick packaging that Magic Gate is a DRM technology, it doesn't stop people from thinking that it's something new and cool. They look at the label and figure it must be better than normal non-Magic Gate Memory Sticks.

      Labels like these are not the solution and only restrict manufacturer's rights and put a crimp on their profits for no reason whatsoever. Of course, Wyden is from Oregon and may have a small stake in the paper manufacturing increase that will necessarily occur if such a bill is passed.
    • by Ungrounded Lightning (62228) on Wednesday February 19, 2003 @09:25PM (#5340584) Journal
      But you know that the majority of buyers are people who don't understand what the consequences are.

      And part of that is because nobody TOLD them there are consequences.

      But as soon as warning labels start showing up, some of 'em will start to wonder what they're being warned about

      So some will ask, or look around on the net, and maybe find out. Then they'll be able to make an informed decision about whether it matters to them enough to affect their purchase decision.

      And others will just avoid products with the warning label in favor of those without - which will create pressure on the providers to stop using technologies which require a warning label. B-)

      Don't underestimate joe sixpack. Just because he isn't an expert on the things YOU'RE expert on doesn't mean he's dumb or lazy. He may be quite the genius, and just focussed on other interests.
    • Fool me once (Score:2, Insightful)

      by BadDream (577004)
      Maybe the first time. But if the labels are consistent, maybe after someone gets burned once, they will avoid the media that has the warning. Fool me twice, shame on me. Shame there are so many fools in the world. ;-)
      • by MrP- (45616)
        Fool me twice, shame on me.

        Wait, don't you mean

        "fool me once... shame on... shame on you... fool me... cant get fooled again"

        Thats what the president said it was.

  • by 403Forbidden (610018) on Wednesday February 19, 2003 @09:15PM (#5340531)
    No longer will I waste money on games that I can't blindread into Daemon's tools so I can toss the CD...

    I hate ever so much switching CDs.
  • by adzoox (615327) on Wednesday February 19, 2003 @09:16PM (#5340534) Journal
    It's just as offensive to have my "fair use" stripped from me as some lyrics are.

    It will also help sell "forward thinking artists" and labels who don't have the label.

    • how is fair use striped from you in this case, try reading the article its about putting warning lables on electronics that HAVE drm, so you can make a informed choice when buying electronics, I think its a good idea, if people dont buy the things with drm sticker on them maybe the rria will get a clue
  • I like it (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Hatechall (541378) on Wednesday February 19, 2003 @09:17PM (#5340545) Homepage
    See, this kind of thing I think is a lot more benificial then some of the rabit anti-anti-copy thought that has been growing recently. Manufacturers should be allowed to so whatever they want with their product, and on the other side consumers should know what they are getting. No need to start spewing that DRM is evil, just allow everyone the information they need to make a good decision.

    Yes, I am aware of the irony of using that case for DRM, for the information people may need to use for good judgement can be hidden using DRM. I believe it is a weak arguement though.
    • Re:I like it (Score:4, Insightful)

      by NegativeK (547688) <<tekarien> <at> <hotmail.com>> on Wednesday February 19, 2003 @09:33PM (#5340613) Homepage
      Manufacturers should be allowed to so whatever they want with their product, and on the other side consumers should know what they are getting.

      I completely agree. I also think that laws shouldn't be passed regarding this issue. It shouldn't be illegal to break DRM, but it also shouldn't be illegal to put DRM on a disk. When the companies get too greedy and the functionality of their products is lost, they'll feel it in their pocketbook.
      Let the consumer decide.
      • Re:I like it (Score:3, Informative)

        by Mitreya (579078)
        I also think that laws shouldn't be passed regarding this issue. It shouldn't be illegal to break DRM, but it also shouldn't be illegal to put DRM on a disk.

        But I don't see anyone passing laws to make DRM illegal. Manufacturers are free to use any form of DRM that they desire. Problem is, 1) they can lie and pass it off as non-DRM product 2) It is is already illegal to break DRM in many cases (at least when DRM owner has enough lawyers).

    • by twitter (104583) on Wednesday February 19, 2003 @11:17PM (#5341072) Homepage Journal
      Quoth the aritcle:

      "Never in our history have fewer been in a position to control more of the creative potential of our society than now," Lessig said. "We have to buy them off, so they don't break the Internet in the interim."

      Because the first statement is true, the plan will fail. Every major record label, and there are only five in the world, is putting in Digital Rights Denial. If you want to sell a non-major record in your store, the majors cut you off. So, what choice do you have? You look left, DRM, you look right, DRM. Now that internet radio has been shut down, Napster is dead, and the FBI will soon visit you for running P2P, you won't hear of anything but crappy major music. Not even the mighty Google can lead you to reasonable music can it? No, these lables will only dull you to the rights you have lost, make your kids think that it's right and waste time and money in general. The lables are going to be used for propaganda purposes. I can just imagine one now, "Copy Controled to feed our starving artist's hungry babies - Sharing is Stealing!". Every artists out there is going to love it when their five cent cut per sold CD is reduced to two cents to cover the cost of applying the lables.

      You can't buy these bastards off, you can only avoid them. Buy used recodings, support local acts and turn the radio off. Oh yeah, that's what people have already started doing.

      The internet has been broken already too. That's why "so few" people have so much control and I can't serve out of my house over the public network that being used by the local cable company. After all, if everyone could sever, word of mouth and Google would work for everyone including the artists who mostly would earn more money than they do now.

  • by Openadvocate (573093) on Wednesday February 19, 2003 @09:19PM (#5340554)
    Now, when I buy a CD, I expect to be able to use it in my PC and copy the music to my Sony walkman using the program that came with it. If I am in the store and I can't see if I am able to do that, I won't buy it in fear of wasting my money.
    • by Chemical (49694) <nkessler2000 AT hotmail DOT com> on Wednesday February 19, 2003 @09:57PM (#5340742) Homepage
      Is it that Sony Net Walkman? Yuck. You have to encode everything as ATRAC3 and "check in, check out" using their crappy software. No thanks. In fact, I wont buy any Sony MP3 anything for fear that I would have to use some of their check in check out BS. That includes their DVD players, car CD/MP3 players, or whatever else. I advise others to do the same.

      iPod and similar devices are really the only way to go. You mount the unit like a file system, and just drag the files over. No re-encoding, no checking the files out. No DRM. Just ease of use and great performance. Sony realizes this, but because of their music devison holding them back, they are stuck with the crappy DRM hassleware.

      Also, my Pioneer car deck plays MP3s without any crap. Burn the files onto a regular ISO9660 disc, and you're done. No special software. No proprietary formats. No hassles. I know Sony makes decks that play MP3s, but because of all thier DRM pushing, I would be very skeptical about buying one.

      In short, because of Sony Music pushing for DRM, I am probably not going to buy Sony audio electronics again. At one time they were the best, because of Sony Music being scared of their own customers and forcing this lockdown, I'm not even taking a chance with Sony stuff.

    • by Guppy06 (410832) on Wednesday February 19, 2003 @10:24PM (#5340863)
      Ah, but if it's copy protected, shouldn't the store be more willing to accept opened returns? After all, it's not like you could have copied it...
  • Nice, but... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by creative_name (459764) <pauls AT ou DOT edu> on Wednesday February 19, 2003 @09:20PM (#5340557)
    This is, IMHO, a pretty nice little bone to throw us geeks. Now we can know even more certainly what we have to circumvent in order to continue on in our fair-use of things we buy. However, it also seems to me that this is a rather toothless movement and is almost a 'bone' thrown to people on both sides of the debate regarding piracy.
  • by Fishstick (150821) on Wednesday February 19, 2003 @09:20PM (#5340559) Journal
    Opponents of Hollywood's drive to strengthen copyright law are mounting a new strategy: Require anything that has antipiracy technology built in to be clearly labeled and let consumers decide at the cash register.

    So, they aren't trying to pass a law to require digital copyright protection on devices, they are trying to legislate disclosure of "anti-piracy" technology that might otherwise silently sit on that new CD player you are ready to buy from Circuit City.

    Why are we bitching at the Democrats? Oh, because it was on slashdot and the genius editor posted it "from the compromising-freedom dept", so we don't have to actually read the the article before kicking into full knee-jerk mode.

    "I want people to walk into every store in America and see that the product they're about to buy has restrictions," Wyden said. "Let's take this to the marketplace."

    Uh, that's what we want, isn't it? (well, short of making the whole copyright BS go away, I mean).
    • 100% a-right. If we KNOW what DRM is built into the players/media, we can make informed choices and NOT buy the crap that has it. Then the marketplace will make it clear that they will not have their way.
    • "Why are we bitching at the Democrats? Oh, because it was on slashdot and the genius editor posted it "from the compromising-freedom dept","

      Um... it is a compromise. The legislation says "thou shalt label thy copy protection schemes," not "thou shalt not use copy protection schemes that deprive consumers of their fair use rights."
  • A happy medium (Score:5, Interesting)

    by NetDrain (167337) <slashdot at theblight dot net> on Wednesday February 19, 2003 @09:22PM (#5340572) Homepage
    Let's hope that the Hollings bill doesn't also pass, because then you might as well slap the same generic label on every single digital device out there, just like danger tags on everything -- "Misuse of this kleenex could cause personal injury." You know what I mean.

    But, simply by putting a label on the product that says "Restricts blah blah" people who wouldn't have had a clue will now at least have heard of copyright protection and digital restrictions. The more it's talked about, the more people will be judicious with their purchases, and hopefully we can see a happy medium balance itself out.

    Sure, Mom and Pop won't know what the hell that tag means, but when us college students figure realize "hey, I can't download my music anymore?! WTF!!" sales of young-person-targeted devices (PDAs, MP3 players, sleek laptops, etc.) will drop if the restrictions are too high.

    Now, if only we can get this through, fix the DMCA, and repeal the PATRIOT act...
  • Anti-Fair Use?
  • by ObviousGuy (578567) <ObviousGuy@hotmail.com> on Wednesday February 19, 2003 @09:30PM (#5340602) Homepage Journal
    If something is clearly labeled as having DRM, and we can expect that most if not all major device manufacturers will be putting some sort of DRM in their machines, then any circumvention of that DRM limitation is a flagrant violation of the DMCA.

    To quote Ackbar, "It's a trap!"
  • A review of Sen. Wyden's site does not reveal any draft of the bill in question. However, based on comments in the article, it sounds like a good idea.

    This is the same Sen. Wyden who has sponsored a Senate resolution on consumer's rights to use digital content. A link to the PDF here. [senate.gov]

    The advantage of mandatory labelling for consumer devices that have anti-copy technology installed is that the consumer can know, at a glance, whether the device in question will allow him or her to make fair use of digital content he or she has purchased.

    Obviously, the Hollywood crowd would prefer such a bill never see the light of day, since it would make devices with anti-copying technology potentially very unpopular. I can imagine that Sony wouldn't be thrilled.

    At the same time, I can foresee that this is the kind of domestic issue that could easily get buried under the current foreign policy and economic crises.

  • by cygnus (17101) on Wednesday February 19, 2003 @09:35PM (#5340629) Homepage
    SURGEON GENERAL'S WARNING: Smoking Cigarettes Can Be Hazardous To Your Health.

    lot of good that one does. what if this one isn't different?
    • One product is addictive, the other isn't.

      Yes, they are different.
    • Re:ANOTHER WARNING (Score:2, Interesting)

      by TheLoneDanger (611268)

      The idea of dying slowly from lung cancer in a couple of decades is a difficult thing to imagine. It's pretty hard to imagine yourself weak and frail and dying. Copying restrictions have a much more immediate effect. They run counter to our learned desire for 'convenience'.
      'Hmm this cigarette is probably taking another hour off of my life. Oh well.' as opposed to 'Why the fsck won't this cd play on my pc? I've wasted a fscking hour trying to rip an mp3 from this damn thing.'

      It's a nuisance, and people react much more to the small things they can immediately feel the effect of than the larger things they need to think about.

    • SURGEON GENERAL'S WARNING: Smoking Cigarettes Can Be Hazardous To Your Health.

      lot of good that one does. what if this one isn't different?


      What the warning really needs to say is:

      SURGEON GENERAL'S WARNING: Smoking Cigarettes Causes Impotence

      I'm sure a lot more guys would pay attention.
    • lot of good that one does. what if this one isn't different?

      I would guess more people might smoke if not for the warning. This bill is not meant as a solution to the problem. But it certainly is a minimal first step. You don't think these smoking warnings should be abolished, do you?

  • by zutronics (564054) on Wednesday February 19, 2003 @09:36PM (#5340631) Homepage
    During my unemployment tour "02-03", I've watched Wyden fight for some good causes on CSPAN. He is the guy who pushed for more oversight [senate.gov] in the Office of Total Information Awareness program. He also has exposed the anti-consumer tactics of the oil industry. [senate.gov] Why aren't there more like him around?
  • by Nathan Ramella (629875) on Wednesday February 19, 2003 @09:40PM (#5340651) Homepage
    If the govt can't even get labels on food that's been irradiated or genetically engineered (important things that effect everybody and that a lot of people are concerned about), I have little faith in them putting labels on something like entertainment media that outside of the computing pseudo-intelligentsia and chinese midnight street market circles, nobody cares about.

    the urgent need to abolish DRM and copy protection . (Don't get me wrong, I would prefer lack of copyright and copyprotection, I'm trying out for Fox News with all this wild speculation)

  • by frovingslosh (582462) on Wednesday February 19, 2003 @09:48PM (#5340700)
    This technology should never be called anti-piracy technology; it's very strange to see Slashdot use such a deceptive term. This is anti-copy technology. It prevents fair use as well as piracy. It prevents users from doing things with the music they buy that the Supreme Court has already declaired as totally legal. There is no technology that just prevents piracy but allows legitimate use by users, just the opposite, many of these technologies hardly slow pirates at all, but present serious problems for legitimate users.
    • It does NOT prevent Copyright violatiions, aka "Piracy" at all. It just makes gives the average consumer more hassles.

      This is a mutant Tipper Gore PMRC measure at it's best.
    • "This technology should never be called anti-piracy technology;"

      Dammit, I want real anti-piracy technology! Where's my revenue cutter? I want my deck gun!
    • by dirk (87083) <dirk@one.net> on Wednesday February 19, 2003 @10:47PM (#5340962) Homepage
      This technology should never be called anti-piracy technology; it's very strange to see Slashdot use such a deceptive term. This is anti-copy technology. It prevents fair use as well as piracy. It prevents users from doing things with the music they buy that the Supreme Court has already declaired as totally legal. There is no technology that just prevents piracy but allows legitimate use by users, just the opposite, many of these technologies hardly slow pirates at all, but present serious problems for legitimate users.

      While it does stop some fair use (depending on the technology), I think calling it "anti-piracy technology" is completely appropriate. That is what it is designed for, and the major task it accomplishes. Saying it isn't descriptive enough is like saying the alarm system on a car shouldn't be called an "anti-theft device" because it also stops the rightful owner of breaking in when he loses his keys. Nit-picking at terminology isn't going to help the actual battle.
      • by frovingslosh (582462) on Wednesday February 19, 2003 @11:38PM (#5341146)
        While it does stop some fair use (depending on the technology), I think calling it "anti-piracy technology" is completely appropriate.

        Names are very important. Few politicians are brave enough to not vote for a bill titled something like "Special schooling spending for Kids at risk", while they would not vote for the same bill if it was called "Tax increase to spend more money on disruptive delinquent students than the entire rest of the class combined". In this case, if the name anti-piracy is attached to the technology, it makes it sound like anyone who opposes it is in favor of theft of intellectual property. That hardly the case and most Slashdot readers know this technology stops more legitimate uses that it stops any real piracy. Slashdot should not call such technology by a name that encourages it's legal support and enforcement.

      • I think calling it "anti-piracy technology" is completely appropriate. That is what it is designed for

        I don't concede this assertion. IMO, one of the design goals is to establish standards that enforce controls on usage, not just copying. Anyone who cares to prove me wrong is welcome to market a DVD player in the US that is infinitely region-resettable and ignores fast-forward lockouts.

  • by dameron (307970) on Wednesday February 19, 2003 @09:49PM (#5340702) Homepage
    Using the language of the enemy means we've bought into their argument. Anyone with a positive bank account is against piracy, so let's please try to use language that best expresses our reasoned opinions.

    -dameron
  • I wanted to send Senator Wyden an email lending my support for his bill, so I encountered his contact page [senate.gov].

    Under the Senate e-mail system, it is only possible for me to respond to messages from Oregonians. If you are traveling or on active duty, please fill out the form with an Oregon address and provide your current address within the message. If you are not from Oregon, I urge you to contact one of the Senators from your home state.

    I sent my support along even though I don't live in Oregon, but I'm left wondering what this "Senate e-mail system" is and why it restricts him from replying to any out-of-state emails. It's perfectly understandable (and admirable) that he puts his constituents first, but is he forbidden to correspond with citizens that he doesn't directly represent?

    --K.
    • I sent my support along even though I don't live in Oregon, but I'm left wondering what this "Senate e-mail system" is and why it restricts him from replying to any out-of-state emails. It's perfectly understandable (and admirable) that he puts his constituents first, but is he forbidden to correspond with citizens that he doesn't directly represent?

      The translation of his message is:

      if you're aren't a constituent (and can prove it), I'm not going to care.
      There's nothing inherent in the Senate email system that's going to keep him from responding if you're not from his state. He just doesn't want to hear from anyone who isn't in a position to vote for him.
  • Just a thought.
  • Since people making buying decisions based on the artist/content of the CD, I don't see where this will have any significant impact. It's not like you'll find protected & non-protected versions of the same CD out there...
    • Re:I dunno... (Score:3, Insightful)

      by hhknighter (629353)
      But it should make a difference if the CD I bought is not compatible with MP3 conversion or if the CD is NOT readable by common CD Players.

      Software/Games already have copy protection all over them, disabling means to copy, also without any indications of protection. If that's on music CDs, shouldn't be a problem at all. But if I have to buy new DRM drives. That's a problem.
  • great idea, I'm sure the RIAA will try to stop it. After all, isn't it more fun to villify and anger your customers than it is to educate them?
  • FINALLY (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Tuxinatorium (463682) on Wednesday February 19, 2003 @10:29PM (#5340877) Homepage
    Now they won't be able to screw you over by selling unreturnable products that are defective in the sense that the customer doesn't know ahead of time that he won't be able to play them on his computer, car stereo, or whatnot. I'm suprised someone hasn't already sued the pants off of the recording industry for that bullshit.
  • by eekaterrorist (624987) on Wednesday February 19, 2003 @11:10PM (#5341050)
    They should be referred to as "anti-backup" or "anti-fair-use" labels.
  • Another sticker on the iPod box: "This box has a sticker on it warning you not to steal music"
  • by tobes (302057)
    towards a world of independent consultant musicians, and businesses that cater to them. I wonder how many A&R guys have already made the jump?

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