While this is from a post I made on a slightly different topic, I believe this could be an important question to consider during all these attempts at the entertainment industry to sue its customers into oblivion...The concept should be brought up to the judge if a case EVER gets to court:
This is going under the fact that its still 100% legal to time-shift media for personal use, which of course is subject to change in the future if congress gets it way..
The rest of this discussion is based on the above, and that NO commercial gain is involved, that Its all 'freely' shared...
1 - It would be legal for person A to record show A.
2 - Its also legal for person B to record show A.
3 - If user C slept thru show, he still had a right to record it.
4 - Why cant user B give C his recorded copy.. ( for free ) since C has a right to record the same show.
Taking this to its logical conclusion, why cant user D, which is across the country that was at work that day get copy from user C?
The copy that is being spread around is not the original quality, as its been compressed and/or recorded from the TV/radio. So its not the same quality as going out and purchasing it from the store? It is the same 'version' that all users have a right to record for their own personal use.
This would also be the same issue for MP3 songs, if they were *ever* on the radio, then its no different if you share them in a *lossy* format to other people that had the *right* to record it themselves, again for their personal use..
Now if you do a bit-copy of a CD/DVD then distribute that, or if it's an unreleased copy ( such as still in theaters, or a screener ) then of course this analogy doesn't apply.. but I'm not talking of those cases...
This also makes the assumption that the original 'broadcast' was not 'subscriber only', or all 4 users were subscribers to the same service.
So I guess it boils down to, what is wrong legally with this analogy, and why is the 'industry' allowed to continue to harass their customers for doing what is currently LEGAL for us to do?