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RE: [dvd-discuss] Movie Downloads, automatically illegal?

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Tim Neu [mailto:tim@tneu.visi.com]

> Let's say, for example, I want to download a VCD of the 
> stand.  Out of the
> goodness of your heart, you want to help me.  We can 
> "legally" get this
> done through the following convoluted but equivilent process:
> 1.  We trade DVDs.
> 2.  You make a backup copy of your DVD in VCD format.
> 3.  We trade back.  Backup copies flow with the original.
> Done.
> The same thing could be done in the shorter but equivelent process:
> 1.  You make a copy of your DVD in VCD format.
> 2.  You give that copy to me.
> Any possible media shifting between multiple owners of a work 
> can be done
> by trading and making backup copies.
> So, do we have to do the trade/backup dance for our transfer 
> to be legal?

Strictly speaking: yes.  Practically speaking: it could
all be "on paper" only.  But again, you are shifting the
argument away from the original scenario of downloading
your copy from "the internet".  I had presumed that to 
mean from the existing sites where movies are being 
distributed ... usually w/o regard to whether the recipient
has a valid token of ownership (the DVD).  _Those_ people
are violating the distribution rights of the IP owners.
Any transaction you enter into with them -- regardless of
your "right" to a media shifted copy -- is tainted by _their_
legal (rather, illegal) situation.

> > Nevertheless, I think it's a false path to accept.  It's 
> much easier to
> > explain and accept that "You own the DVD.  You can do what you want
> > with it."  Than, "You don't own the DVD, but the DVD is a 
> token for a
> > license
> > to watch the movie.  You can't do everything you want with 
> it, but the
> > licensor is obligated to ensure that you have a useful copy."

Actually the licensor is _not_ so obligated.  You _do_ own
the DVD.  The problem is that they are attempting to abrogate
some of our first sale rights ...

> Easier to explain - YES, I would certainly agree.  However, 
> if you claim
> the legal scenario works any way other than an implied 
> license, than how
> do people that go to Wall-Mart and buy The Lord Of the Rings 
> on DVD become
> authorized to watch it?
> How can you buy a movie and NOT the right to use it?

They have never explained that in court, we're still
waiting.  (This, btw, is the argument at the heart of
whether or not you can watch your DVD on anything other
than a "licensed" player ...)

> I'm not stating that the licensor is in any way obligated to 
> ensure that I
> have a useful copy.  I am saying that the licensor should not 
> prevent me
> from making a useful copy, if I own the license.  Kindof like 
> how backups
> work now.  In theory, anyway, IP companies can't prevent me 
> from making a
> copy of the IP (movie, software, music, etc) in case 
> something should make
> the originals unreadable.

Yep.  Should be.

> The same should apply to regaining licensed content to 
> replace bad media:
> A retroactive backup, if you will.

I doubt you'll see that though, because they
really _aren't_ licenseing you, they are selling
you a single copy.

-Richard M. Hartman

186,000 mi./sec ... not just a good idea, it's the LAW!