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RE: [dvd-discuss] Postage Meters and the "Right to Tinker"

I'm not so sure still ... the keystone of your
argument seems to be that I have been given a
gift of the installer, but not TurboTax itself.

TurboTax _is_ on the CD, and it is therefore
materially part of the gift.

Also, consider this recasting of the pieces: 
the installer isn't an application in and of 
itself ... it is the DRM controlling access to 
the work (TurboTax).  

All I am talking about is bypassing the
DRM (the installer) to access the work (TurboTax)
which I own (having recieved it as a gift) . . .

-Richard M. Hartman

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

> -----Original Message-----
> From: John Zulauf [mailto:johnzu@ia.nsc.com]
> Sent: Friday, January 10, 2003 9:00 AM
> To: dvd-discuss@eon.law.harvard.edu
> Subject: Re: [dvd-discuss] Postage Meters and the "Right to Tinker"
> Preface:
> I'm concerned that we as a group can't keep the distinction of the
> TurboTax and DVD TPM's clear.  It is this very conflation 
> that allow the
> MPAA and RIAA to position DeCSS as theft.  Clearly DeCSSing a DVD is a
> fair use (subsequent copying or share may or may not be fair, but the
> DeCSS clearly is).  Why?  The good old "four part test."  
> DeCSS passes,
> cracking keyware (or shareware, or crippleware), whether 
> mailed on CD or
> posted on www.downloads.com doesn't (See note 0, and below).
> Folks if we can't keep this straight, how do we expect 
> congress to?  And
> if Congress is confused, they'll much more likely legally protect BOTH
> rather (or the wrong one) as opposed to only right one.
> Richard Hartman wrote:
> > If it weren't for that 'gift' aspect, then I wouldn't
> > have any problems w/ the idea that hacking past the
> > DRM is theft of their product.  
> The gift is a of copy (and thus the right to use) an fully functioning
> installer disk that includes most of the components of a working
> TurboTax.  In the EULA and on the packaging are the terms of that
> right-to-use.  Any use outside those terms is only legitimate if it
> falls under the general rubric of "fair use."  
> Supplying your own authentication mechansim to bypass the installer's
> isn't a fair use of (drum roll) not the installer disk but of the
> TurboTax components on it.  You own a copy of these TurboTax 
> components,
> and may make any fair use of them you like (see Note 1).  
> Bypassing the
> authentication method (without obtaining a right-to-use in 
> order to use
> the product a tax calculator) isn't fair, because it impacts the fair
> market value of the those files. 
> > For example, if I
> > made a copy of that CD and gave it to you, that would
> > be theft (although if I gave you the original, it
> > would merely be a transfer of property...)
> This is where I think you have it exactly backwards (and where this
> differs from "Die Hard").  TurboTax would only be to happy for you to
> distribute copies of their installer CD to all of your 
> friends (See note
> 2).  The fair market value of this give away being $0, this 
> is certainly
> fair use as the market value of the installer disk certainly will not
> decrease.
> If you crack the authentication of the installer and make the 
> infringing
> copies of the TurboTax components supplied, THEN that is infringement
> (not theft, but I knew what you meant). 
> .002
> (Note 0) Cracking the TurboTax installer (regardless of what 
> we think of
> p-spam) clearly isn't fair use, not only locally in the impact on the
> value of retail versions of the TurboTax files, buy also 
> globally on the
> impact on the market value of all tax software -- and antithetical to
> progress.  Remember, every warez Photoshop copy is users 
> subtracted from
> The Gimp, Ulead, or others Adobe's competitors.
> (Note 1) You could the mass produce the disk as a "one time 
> pad" cipher
> keys, the way books were used in the past. You can perform 
> any analysis
> or reverse engineering of the product you like.  You can extract the
> "pure factual elements" of the tax tables et. al. from the data if you
> can find them.  You can even try out random numbers as keys, and even
> succeed in installed the work, assuming you then uninstall the product
> without use it for your taxes.  As long as your use of the installer
> disk doesn't impact the fair market value of the content, have fun!
> (Note 2) in fact an Amway like multilevel marketing scheme (chain
> letters with CD ROMs, or P2P availability) even with commissions given
> based on the distributor tree would be cheaper for TurboTax 
> -- and choke
> the net. Actually if one doesn't lose sight of the pre-sale, post-sale
> dichotomy, it would be a great poster child for P2P enabled business
> models.
> Compare and contrast this with "Die Hard".  If you receive an
> unsolicited copy of "Die Hard" on DVD.  Any copies for 
> friends use that
> $4K authoring DVD-R writer you happen to have lying around, or any P2P
> sharing of even the CSS encrypted VOB's would raise the copyright
> holders ire, not garner praise.