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Here we'll explore the nexus of legal rulings, Capitol Hill policy-making, technical standards development, and technological innovation that creates -- and will recreate -- the networked world as we know it. Among the topics we'll touch on: intellectual property conflicts, technical architecture and innovation, the evolution of copyright, private vs. public interests in Net policy-making, lobbying and the law, and more.

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Copyfight

December 12, 2004
All Your Fair Use Are Belong to UsEmail This EntryPrint This Entry
Posted by Donna Wentworth

Responding to the post below about the possible Time Warner/HBO plan to "grant" us 2-4 weeks to exercise our fair use rights, a Copyfight reader asks, "No Piracy, No reduction in revenue ... Just scheduling [shows] when we want. HOW DOES THIS HARM THE CONTENT PROVIDER???"

Answer: If we are allowed to retain our rights, the copyright cartel cannot sell them back to us at a premium.

Currently, you can record "Six Feet Under" and "time shift" -- that is, watch it whenever you want. But think of how much more lucrative it would be for the copyright holders if the recording "expired" and you were forced to re-purchase the episode by plunking down a chunk of change for "Six Feet Under" on DVD, "in attractive box sets with special features such as out-takes and directors' notes."




COMMENTS
Zach on December 12, 2004 07:00 PM writes...

I think some content owners would argue that the ability to copy and "time shift" in this way is an ability, not a right. It's been a while since I've read the Sony Betamax case, but I recall that one of the reasons that case won was the testimony of some copyright owners, like Fred Rogers, who said that they were perfectly fine with time-shifting, etc. It looks like HBO has found a technological way of confirming that they're not as okay with it as Mr. Rogers was. How is it wrong for a copyright holder to choose whether they're all right with this or not? How is it right to force copyright owners to allow users to make perfect digital copies of their work?

Permalink to Comment
Alexander Wehr on December 12, 2004 07:31 PM writes...

"How is it wrong for a copyright holder to choose whether they're all right with this or not?"

-Because I PAY FOR MY CABLE.. ITS MY CABLE... MINE! not theirs! I want to record it and keep a permanent video collection.

It was my RIGHT established under betamax. They said timeshifting was a fair use RIGHT! not a "transitional right"... they didnt set a "limit" on the amount of time in which i was "allowed" to view it later.....they also didnt set a limit on the NUMBER of times i was allowed to view it later.

This means INFINITE.. not "the number of times some bigshot producer wants to give me before RIPPING ME OFF"..

I refuse to buy cable services which implement this. I'll download any tv shows i hear are good from the internet entirely, and forget cable completely if they refuse to simply let me use a vcr.

DMCRA! NOW!

Permalink to Comment
matt on December 13, 2004 10:17 AM writes...

i agree that the only reason for content providers to invent "transitional fair use" is to allow them an additional source of income. that souce is now called, in this instance, HBO "On-Demand". if the content provider is able to reproduce all of the benefits of time-shifting as provided under the betamax decision, is the defense still pertainent? i don't know the answer to that, but it sure is a good avenue of attack for the content providers.

Permalink to Comment


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