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Re: [dvd-discuss] EFF: Security Researchers Drop Scientific Censo rship Case

I would argue that the doctrine of estoppel applies no just to this 
settlement but actually the RIAA lawsuit. As a public challenge to 
break the SDMI protections, they are also waiving the right to use 
the DMCA to protect their private schemes. Essentually, you make 
the schemes public. You make the challenge public. You can't now 
try to keep it private.

I would also add that the doctrine should apply to ANY copyright 
material sold in the market place. You have put it out there in the 
marketplace for public consumption. Part of public consumers are 
the technowienies. If you won't want the technowienies reverse 
engineering, don't put it out there in the marketplace. You had the 
lawyers. You should have some brains but you are estopped from 
now saying "Oh...you can't reverse engineer this"

Date sent:      	Wed, 6 Feb 2002 20:54:41 -0600
From:           	Eric Seppanen <eds@reric.net>
To:             	dvd-discuss@eon.law.harvard.edu
Subject:        	Re: [dvd-discuss] EFF: Security Researchers Drop Scientific Censo rship Case
Send reply to:  	dvd-discuss@eon.law.harvard.edu

> On Wed, Feb 06, 2002 at 09:10:00PM -0500, Peter D. Junger wrote:
> > Eric Seppanen writes:
> > 
> > : On Wed, Feb 06, 2002 at 02:30:32PM -0500, Peter D. Junger wrote:
> > : > : > >San Francisco - Citing assurances from the government, the
> > : > : They _believed_ them !??!? 
> > : >  
> > : > It's not so much a matter of believing them as estopping them.
> > : 
> > : Can someone clarify exactly how estoppel works in this case?  Do RIAA's
> > : informal assurances provide a solid legal defense for the next academic
> > : who wants to publish RIAA's dirty secrets?
> > 
> > No. There's no solid legal defense.  But do you think that the DOJ
> > will want to have to explain to a judge why they are prosecuting
> > someone for doing something that they told Felten that they would
> > not prosecute him for?  And how do you think that a right-minded
> > judge is going to react to that explanation?
> Well, given their past behavior, I'd expect a response like,
> "Of course we told these respected researchers that they could research
> these systems.  But we never said it was OK for them to distribute
> DRM-breaking tools, costing jillions of dollars in lost sales..."
>  or
> "Of course we told these respected researchers that they could research
> these systems.  But _this_ guy isn't a professor at a university, he's
> just an evil hacker that wants to wreck our jillion-dollar industry..."
> I was imagining the RIAA willing to go to bat again.  I doubt the feds
> care much one way or another until important lobbyists start to scream
> and stamp their feet.  Of course, there's probably other groups (say,
> MPAA) who weren't a party to this case that won't be estopped at all.
> But I understand the rationale for dropping the case.  Sounds like it
> would've been an uphill battle just to get it heard at all, and since
> there were no nasty precedents set, it'll be easier to just throw
> resources behind the next defendant, who might actually get their day in
> court.