Digital Media Consumer’s Rights Act expects a serious hearing

The Digital Media Consumer’s Rights Act which aims to make changes to the DMCA is will get a serious hearing in the U.S. Congress and  is expected to pass according to the Consumer Electronics Association trade group.  Unlike other proposed DMCA amendments, this Act would allow consumers to legally make backup copies of their protected content such as DVDs, DRM protected digital media and so on, currently prohibited under the DMCA.



Vice president and counsel for the MPAA David Green opposes this proposed ACT as he claims it is not needed and would potentially allow the creation of devices or technologies that would cause wide spread copyright infringement use. 



On the other hand, Petricone and Fred von Lohmann from the EFF argue that the DMCA outlaws most technologies that could be put to other uses besides just copyright infringement.  The DMCA has little if any effect on large
scale pirates, but has been effective in preventing consumers from making legitimate backup copies of their digital media.  The DMCA also discourages the development of software and hardware that would allow backups since the manufacturers may fear of being sued. 
T4Z for submitted the following news via our  news submit :

WASHINGTON — A bill protecting so-called “fair use” rights will get a serious hearing in the U.S. Congress. That’s the prediction from advocates on both sides of a debate over whether the U.S. Digital Millennium Copyright Act tramples consumer rights.

With the support of Representative Joe Barton (R-Texas), named chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee in February, the 18-month-old Digital Media Consumers’ Rights Act should eventually pass through Congress, predicts Michael Petricone, vice president for technology policy at the Consumer Electronics Association trade group.


Petricone and three others advocates on both sides of the issue debated the anticircumvention provisions of the DMCA in front of congressional staffers at a Congressional Internet Caucus event this week. The DMCA outlaws most attempts to circumvent copy protection on digital content, as well as devices primarily used to infringe copyright.

Opponents of the DMCA’s anticircumvention provisions, including Barton and Digital Media Consumers’ Rights Act sponsor Representative Rich Boucher (D-Virginia), argue the DMCA goes too far in making it illegal for consumers to break copy protections in an attempt to exercise their legal fair use rights, such as making backup copies of DVDs or excerpting a DVD or CD in a school report.

Read the full article here.


It would be nice to see this pass as the movie industry seem to be taking the wrong approach to stopping piracy.  Introducing laws as well as using them to sue software and hardware manufactures does little good in stopping large scale pirates.  For example, DVD X Copy was originally intended to allow consumers to make backup copies of their DVDs and helped prevent large scale piracy by adding a warning notice to the target disc as well as not allowing copies to be made of its backups.  Despite this, they were ordered to shut down for violating anti-copy patents used in DVDs.


T4Z wrote “Well this new proposal sounds promising!”.  Feel free to discuss and find out more about copy protection measures on our Copy Protection Discussion Forum.

Source: PCWorld – Copyright

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