[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

International implications of the DMCA (was Re: [dvd-discuss] Inexplicable)

While it is true that the DMCA does not apply in China or Germany, or in 
Russia for that matter, the DMCA reflects some of the differences 
between the way some in the United States view intellectual property and 
the way it is  viewed in other nations.  The international implications 
of the DMCA clearly can be seen in the Skylarov case, because Russia 
should not be governed by the DMCA either... yet thanks to a paranoid 
response by Adobe Software due to the disclosure of a poor 
copy-protection scheme,

[which they should have been happy had been disclosed so it could be 
improved, thereby decreasing Adobe's liability for potential cracking 

  we now have a case where international computer security experts are 
afraid to share information in the United States for fear of a similar 
reaction.  This is actually worse than when the RSA algorithm could not 
be exported, and results in the same problem... the U.S.A. will be left 
behind in the development of further encryption and security 
technologies, because as the rest of the world shares information while 
we try to prosecute those who share information, we are going to fall
farther and farther behind the intelligence curve.

To my mind this issue is at the heart of why DVD's should not have 
region codes.  In an attempt to prevent the piracy of DVD's, the 
industry has criminalized many legitimate uses of the media.  For 
example, if Skylarov had enabled deaf people to read their e-books on 
the Linux operating system, how would that have hurt the sales of 
e-books?  The reality is that it probably would have helped popularize 
them and speed up their adoption.  Instead, Adobe suffers a massive PR 
failure among programmers and loses credibility while others migrate to 
open formats other than .PDF.   The lesson I get from this is that the 
very same thing may happen to the DVD industry if they continue to 
restrict fair use in their attempt to protect intellectual property.
It also closes the export market to nations where MS-Windows has not 
been or will not be adopted for security reasons, thereby decreasing 
potential profits.

Richard Hartman wrote:
> Neither the Chinese nor the Germans are governed by the DMCA.