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[dvd-discuss] Movie Downloads, automatically illegal?

On Wed, 31 Jul 2002, Ronald Austin wrote:

> On Wednesday 31 July 2002 11:38 am, you wrote:
> > Sorry, I have no sympathy for that kid.
> Neither do I, he might rent that movie from me if he didn't download it from
> the internet. I lose a lot of rentals from downloaded or copied movies. If

Does an internet download of a movie automatically gain illegal status?
We don't need to make the MPAA's argument for them!   Lets take a closer

a.  Media shifting is an established fair use
b.  The right to watch a movie is implicitly granted when a copy of a
movie is purchased.  (if not, when do all legitimate movie purchasers
become "authorized"?)

For example, I have a laptop which is a little old.  It does not have a
DVD drive, but it is still fast enough to play a video file or a VCD.

Now, I happen to own (as an example) Stephen King's "The Stand" on DVD,
but as I have said my laptop is not capable of playing one.   Converting
the video myself would be decidedly inconvenient, since the movie is
nearly 8 hours long.

Is it illegal for me to download the movie from the internet and burn it
to VCD so that I can watch the movie when I take my laptop camping?
(assuming the video is viewed in private and is not publicly performed)

Why, or why not?

Does the legal status change if I have a DVD drive in the laptop?  At
home?  What if I just don't want to bring my valuable DVDs with me to a
public campground?

What if I already wrecked a DVD of mine (leaving it in a hot tent,
probably), and just want to obtain a replacement copy of a movie I already

It seems a little less black and white to me.

> people like them they will make a VCD or buy a DVD. Either way I lose,
> the studios however don't lose much. That kid isn't likely to drive 70
> miles to watch that movie at the theater and his parents are not going
> to take him to the movies every week nor are they going to buy every
> DVD that comes out. I stand here every day and listen to customers say
> that "so and so bought that DVD I'll just get him to make me a tape of
> it"... bang, one more rental down the drain.  Copying tapes and DVDs
> hurt my business.

They may, but that may not make them illegal per se.   The problem in this
whole thing is that MPAA & RIAA say copying=illegal and everyone believes
them without even considerting the situation.

Granted, a large number of uses are illegitimate, but so was the copying
in Sony v. Betamax, and now we have VCR+ codes.

______         _ __                          Military Intelligence
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