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October 7, 2005
DRM Is Not a Contract
Via Edward Felten's Dashblog, Tim Lee's post debunking PFF VP Patrick Ross's "incredibly confused" defense of the DMCA:
The folks at PFF desperately want to portray the DMCA as a “free market” approach to copyright problems. But the shoe just doesn’t fit. TPM systems are not contracts, and circumventing them, as such, is not theft.
On that note, a pair of quotes to ponder:
Mr. Ross, in the article referenced above: "No sane business operator enters a contract in which one party has the right to disregard its terms at will, but that's what HR-1201 permits."
Cory Doctorow @ BoingBoing: "DRM ass-kissers talk a lot about how DRM is a 'contract' -- someone offers you content in exchange for you waiving your rights to record, or time-shift, or format shift, or archive, or use on your Mac, or whatever.
But it's a funny kind of contract that is renegotiated at the whim of one side, who can unilaterally change the deal whenever he feels like it, and which you can't get out of if you decide that the new deal isn't one that you like."
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