Tuesday, November 09, 2010

paying attention

Quill & Quire, Canada's magazine about the book trade recently asked on their blog - Should writers be paying closer attention to the copyright bill?

The answer, of course, is yes. Bill C-32 has passed Second Reading in the House of Commons and is now headed for a special legislative committee, at which one presumes various interests will propose various amendments.

I think creators should watch very carefully which amendments are proposed and who is proposing them. And writers (and publishers) need to play closer attention, because whether they realize it or not, they've been targeted for demonization by the consumer protection campaign, and it has already gotten ugly.

In a shockingly biased and unbalanced interview this week on the Search Engine podcast, TVO journalist Jesse Brown lobbed user-rights softballs at consumer advocate Michael Geist to try to get at a summing up of his user-focused C-32 campaign. Their friendly chat included lots of winking agreement about how bad "big media" is, and how there is an organized and somewhat diabolical misinformation campaign afoot to convince soft-headed politicians that fair dealing is bad. I quote Brown:

"It all comes down to this... after the hundreds of thousands of Canadians who spoke up for fair copyright, after the millions and millions of dollars of US corporate lobbying money that has flooded into Canada to influence our politicians... the dirty tricks, the name calling, the astroturf websites, the planted editorials..."

"everything this astroturf Balanced Copyright group has been saying in the press through their spokespuppets... almost like US Republican style talking points"

In the interview, Geist does not disagree with this completely one-sided characterization of the debate and the maligning of good-faith discussion and advocacy from the creator side; in fact, he takes it further and accuses Canadian publishers and collectives of an organized misinformation campaign to mislead MPs.

If Brown and Geist's disdain for the professional writing and publishing community in Canada is not clear enough from the interview, here's what Brown tweeted (and Geist retweeted) in response to a Nino Ricci op-ed on educational use in the Globe last week:

"I don't care who Access Copyright gets to write their propaganda: it's lies, not opinion, & the Globe shouldn't print it."

Let's be clear about this. Jesse Brown called two-time Governor General Award winner Nino Ricci a liar and accused Access Copyright of creating propaganda.

Why? Because Ricci expressed widespread concerns about the potential effects of an educational exception on the collective licencing that provides income for writers and publishers.

Brown called him a liar, and Geist happily retweeted the accusation. I wanted that understood before getting to this next part.

Two days ago, Michael Geist published an op-ed in the Hill Times calling for compromise in the amendment process. Geist's suggestions look quite smiley on the surface. He calls for changes to the TPM protections to make them more consumer-friendly, codifying the fair dealing fairness test within the bill to alleviate creator concerns about a broad educational copyright exception, and some vague guarantee from the government to commit to "continued full program funding" in place of an extended copyright levy.

First, creators get the slap-down from Geist and Brown, then the friendly invitation to compromise. Okay, okay, I'll compromise... please stop hitting me.

Writers (and publishers, and collectives) should pay closer attention to these compromise suggestions. Let's start with...

Technological Protection Measures

There is a great deal of panic being spread about legal protection for TPMs. Consumer rights activists are repeating at every opportunity that C-32's TPM protections are an attack on consumer rights. They have succeeded in convincing almost everyone to think of TPMs as digital locks.

The campaign against TPM protection should be of interest to any professional creator right now, because its aim is to weaken the ability of copyright holders to control access to their content. TPM protections allow you to put No Trespassing signs around your intellectual property (see this earlier posting for more on TPMS as signs). Without legal protection for your No Trespassing signs, anyone can rip them down and trespass at will. Worse yet, anyone can profit from their trespass on your property.

Those who think of TPMs only as locks say broad legal protection for TPMs will trump user rights to content. I invite you all to read lawyer James Gannon's response to that suggestion.

For me, the TPM question boils down to this - the attempt by C-32 to decriminalize certain common consumer practices like format and time shifting was done in good faith and is genuinely a good thing, but decriminalization does not create a borderless new "right" to ignore No Trespassing signs. The polite culture of permission still stands, because respect for creativity is at the core of copyright.

I'll address Geist's other "compromises" in a later posting.

NB: This posting was edited to remove a terribly constructed sentence. I was hurrying a bit when I first wrote it. Busy times.

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44 comments:

Pieter Hulshoff said...

Dear John,

I believe I've already pointed out the flaws in James Gannon's views in a previous post, so I'm not going to repeat myself.

For me, the TPM question boils down to this - the attempt by C-32 to decriminalize certain common consumer practices like format and time shifting was done in good faith and is genuinely a good thing, but decriminalization does not create a borderless new "right" to ignore No Trespassing signs. The polite culture of permission still stands, because respect for creativity is at the core of copyright.

Ok, this makes no sense:
We consumers either need permission or it is permitted by law. You can't expect something to be legal by law, but still requiring the copyright holder's permission. That would defeat the purpose of making it an exception to copyright law. The fact that a TPM can be used to require permission from a copyright holder before an action otherwise legal by law is permitted by default makes the exception in law moot.

Again: how do you compare a law that makes it illegal for me to write an Open Source dvd/blu-ray player to a no trespassing sign?

Gruesome said...

Actually John, now you're fling false statements. Jesse Brown simply pointed out that the story was full of lies. Mr Ninno Ricci may not even have been aware of this but writing an article full of falsehoods and putting your name on it calls for disdain no matter how many awards you've won.
These weren't opinions, he was stating them as fact.
Even Tony Clement had to comment on the falsehood of the story. Calling it nonsense.
Of course with all those awards, how could anything he had to say be nonsense right John?
Right now you're making Geist look like a saint.
It doesn't matter how many awards someone has John, no matter how high you can aspire to, you can always send yourself tumbling.
Mr Ricci chose to put his name to some nonsense, shame on him.

"This updated copyright bill guts Canadian culture"
Nino Ricci

Show some courage John, where's the comment about sensational headline writing?
Woops forgot he's a two-time Governor General Award winner

Anonymous said...

Wow, that "interview" was embarrassing. Could you imagine Paikin and any of his guests pulling a similar stunt? Didn't think so. Looks bad on TVO, to say the least. WS

Chris A said...

You still haven't answered my question with regards to if TPMs are just No Trespassing signs, why do they need legal protection? Since the act of trespassing itself is illegal, why do you need to make removing the sign illegal at all?

So if they are going to be legally protected, they are locks, not signs. Signs are warning labels, not something restricting your legal use of something.

And I've read James' post, it didn't make me feel any better because reading that section of the bill myself doesn't lead me to the same conclusion he did.

The Mad Hatter said...

John,

Wonder where that puts me, I've accused everyone of lying, including Geist, Knopf, Sookman, Gannon, and you.

As to the TPM measures, the problem is attempting to legislates against an action, is that the success of the legislation depends on the difficulty of the action, and on the visibility of the action.

Let's consider jaywalking. It's easy to do, but it's easy to see, so the police can keep it under control.

Compare that with breaking a TPM. It's easy to do, and it's difficult to see, as it can be done inside your house, where no one can see your computer screen.

In effect you end up with a law which is unenforceable. Unenforceable laws are bad, they led to disrespect for the law itself.

This is of course a highly simplified explanation, but the details are there.

Of course I don't expect you to believe it.

Wayne

Sandy Crawley said...

The irony of Michael Geist railing against propaganda would be delicious if it weren't so dangerous. Why do people listen to a consumer advocate as if he were offering unbiased analysis?

Chris A said...

Why do people listen to creator advocates like their opinion is unbiased?

Anonymous said...

Why do Canadian publishers hate Canadian writers?

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/opinions/editorials/giller-is-enough-to-drive-you-to-gasperation/article1794157/

John said...

Anonymous -- that is a very dramatic conclusion to come to from the Skibsrud/Giller story. Then again, I'm getting used to the topsy turvy logic of the copyleft. "Fans" who illegally download and avoid payment do so out of love and appreciation for the work, and publishers who invest risk, money, time and effort into the work hate their authors. Is that right?

Thanks for coming out.

Chris A. - is it not illegal to rip down a No Trespassing sign and pretend it wasn't there? I'm not a lawyer, of course, but...

Speaking of lawyers, James Gannon is one, with specific expertise in technology and internet law. You're allowed to not come to the same conclusion, but his explanation looks sound to me.

Mad Hatter, you are absolutely right. That was highly simplified. Not sure I'd call it an explanation, but the simplified part is bang on.

And, last but not least, Pieter, it's like you are looking at a clear blue sky and asking me how I can possibly say that's a clear blue sky. The bill decriminalizes specific acts around content, as long as the content owner gives permission in the transfer. Why is that so difficult to understand?

A CC license does the exact same thing. You have the right to do certain things, as long as the licensee has allowed those things.

As to your desire to build competing technology, I would refer you to competition law.

Happy Remembrance Day all. I am spending some time this afternoon reading the aforementioned Giller winner by Johanna Skibsrud. I bought the e-book - Yay, legally purchased content!

http://bit.ly/9MOeJ5

Chris A said...

"Chris A. - is it not illegal to rip down a No Trespassing sign and pretend it wasn't there? I'm not a lawyer, of course, but..."

That doesn't really answer the question though, it deflects it with another not really relevant question. But I'll ask another of you. Is ripping a trespassing sign down itself illegal, as in there's a specific part of a law that protects that, or is it part of another law altogether?

"Speaking of lawyers, James Gannon is one, with specific expertise in technology and internet law. You're allowed to not come to the same conclusion, but his explanation looks sound to me."

Not really. He makes some assumptions that other people, including lawyers and technology experts, have not come to the same conclusion on as obvious by your repeated attacks (which is really what they are, I'd call it disagreement, but that generally comes a lot more civilly than you act) against those who do not come to the same conclusion. So no, I don't think his explanation is sound at all.

Enjoy the book John!

Sandy Crawley said...

@Chris A.

I don't claim to be unbiased. I am frankly in favour of finding a way to preserve the IP rights of those who make original works and thereby making it possible to live by independent creativity. I don't think the "cloud" is going to bring forth a textbook, let alone a great play, poem or novel. I don't buy the "free-for-all" model that suggests that current and future digital technologies are equivalent to the Droits du Seigneur that permitted our early colonial rulers to avail themselves of anything or anyone their eye beheld...that's all.

Gruesome said...

Yay ! John is that some inference that those who want fair dealing regardless of digital locks won't pay for content?

The only ones concerned about tpm's and fair use are the ones who pay.
I hope people understand that

Gruesome said...

I don't know sandy there seems to be a lot of focus on restricting people who actually pay for these works. As opposed to those that are stealing it.

Chris A said...

@Sandy - I never said you were unbiased. I was just asking the same question you were, just from the other side of the equation.

As to the rest of your post, while that's a nice dream to have, it's not necessarily that realistic, and a copyright bill that doesn't respect the consumer as much as the creator is not going to achieve this because the consumer will just ignore it no matter how many times people are sued, as shown in other countries that have made copyright laws that protect the creator/distributor more than the consumer.

And Dr. Giest, except in John's and some others rather biased view, doesn't say that creators should not be paid, but that the copyright bill needs to be fair to both.

Chris A said...

At this point, my view on DRM is pretty clear since all evidence to this date shows that it has 0 effect on stopping people form actually breaking copyright law (which still makes me wonder why legal protection is needed at all other than to meet WIPO which we can do with a much more consumer friendly version) pretty much shows that all DRM does is make people who legitimately want to buy your stuff inconvenienced.

I could go into others, but I assume you've already read them.

Sandy Crawley said...

@Chris

So, is it thieves or people who pay that are concerned about TPMs? Looks like both. And I know the good professor says creators need to be compensated. It's just not clear how that's going to happen in his vision.

But now I really get where you're coming from. You say that creators and consumers should be equal under the law. Not just balanced in terms of their roles in consumption of original works,but equal.

Interesting. I wonder if the chicken I consumed last night felt it was my equal before it was slaughtered....

Chris A said...

@Sandy

"So, is it thieves or people who pay that are concerned about TPMs? Looks like both. And I know the good professor says creators need to be compensated. It's just not clear how that's going to happen in his vision."

Considering that TPMs generally have a way of screwing over the consumer (like Sony installing a rootkit on people's computers), yes people who are legally buying your stuff need to worry about them. Plus they can cause a problem if you want to do something your legally allowed to do with the items you bought.

The people who pirate? TPMs are just a minor road bump to remove in the way of getting to the content that's not a major deal. So really, what are TPMs suppose to do since they don't actually stop the pirate at all?

"But now I really get where you're coming from. You say that creators and consumers should be equal under the law. Not just balanced in terms of their roles in consumption of original works,but equal."

Pretty much. If you want consumers to pay you and respect you, the law needs to reflect that as much as it does the protection of the creators. If it doesn't, you may as well give up it ever really being enforced because no one is going to care.

"Interesting. I wonder if the chicken I consumed last night felt it was my equal before it was slaughtered...."

Not really a good analogy. If you want me to pay for you stuff, as in purchase not licence, I have some expectations on what I should be able to do with them. If I can't either due to law or due to TPMs, I'm either not going to buy, or I'm not going to care and do the illegal thing anyway.

Most people who pirate know what they are doing is illegal, and that doesn't stop them. So why make a law that doesn't respect how the consumer expects to use the things they buy? Oh that's right, control and lockdown. All evidence points to TPM being used to control how consumers use the things they buy and locking them into that use forever. This benefits neither the creator nor the consumers, just the very large middle men who generally control everything.

John said...

Chris A.,

I am genuinely tired of hearing these lectures on how pirates will just ignore TPMs. You, and others, repeat this piece of copyleft dogma like it actually means something. Criminals will ignore the law and steal things? Really? How did I not see that?

The argument is no more effective than saying if you outlaw guns only outlaws will have guns.

The point of having lines drawn between criminal and civil behaviours is to have those lines. Period. They are justifications unto themselves.

There are no criminal penalties in C-32 for "legitimate consumers" who choose to ignore TPMs for personal uses. The new laws exist to address criminal behaviour and to draw as bright a line as possible around intellectual property.

I am both consumer and creator of cultural product, and I want this bright line. If content comes in a form that I find does not suit how I want to use it, I won't buy that content.

The horrible inconvenience around protected content that you describe simply doesn't exist in the real world. All ownership has limitations -- copyright holders have long accepted the limitations on their ownership. Consumers... or at least the small band of them driven into a froth by free culture theorists, simply need to accept the limitations of their ownership. The rest of us already have - witness Apple's continuing fortunes.

Chris A said...

John, I am far from a copyleftist, and you calling everyone who doesn't happen to share your view on how copyright should be that is getting rather tiring. It's like watching a 5 year old scream that they can't get the candy they want.

I just think that TPM is a futile technology that does nothing to protect you and everything to screw the consumer over because I've experienced it. I just have to look at what is actually going on in the world to know that there is no reason for TPM to exist other than to control how I use something, and there is an absolutely huge consumer push back against such things. I refuse to get somethings because of the DRM on them (see Bluray, any Ubisoft computer game, a Kindle for myself like my wife has) because it's nothing but an inconvenience to me, the person you want to buy your. At least until I have no other choice because the middle man forces it down my throat because it's the only thing they sell.

TPM doesn't help you, and it certainly doesn't help me, so who exactly does it help? Why are you so determined that it's needed despite all the evidence that it does nothing but make something things more annoying for the people who actually want to make sure you get paid? What do you have against those people?

As for the whole it's only to go after the people who try to break copyright sell things, bullshit. People know that it's already illegal, so adding TPM isn't going to stop them. It might slow them down for a bit. I have actually read that section of the bill, and I don't think it does that remotely.

I'm just as tired of your anti-consumer rants as you are of hearing opinions that don't match yours, your standing as a consumer not withstanding.

Chris A said...

Hm...changing ideas part way through. I'll fix some of my mistakes here.

"the person you want to buy your" should be "the person you want to buy your work"

"I have actually read that section of the bill, and I don't think it does that remotely." should be "I have actually read that section of the bill, and I don't think it does that remotely allow users to use the things in the way fair dealings says they can, and there are more than enough experts I've read that agree with that one person saying differently isn't really going to change my mind."

Sandy Crawley said...

@Chris,

My posts here don't relate the treatment of TPMs in the draft bill. My concerns are the sections that weaken compensation for various uses in education. As I have noted here and elsewhwere, the behaviour of the educational community around this issue strongly contradicts those who aver that there's no threat there.

Chris A said...

@Sandy

While I'm inclined, personally, to believe that the current method of determining fair dealing used by the supreme court is enough to make that not a concern, I can understand that people would want some clarification on what would constitute education fair dealing.

But to be perfectly honest, I'm not overly sure what all the concerns are about it, and my main concern with C-32 is the TPM provisions, so I haven't looked that much into it. Doesn't mean I don't occasionally play devil's advocate to try and get more information on what the problem is, but that hasn't produced much in the way of getting the concerns.

Gruesome said...

Chris this is John's mo, try to marginalize everyone who'd like balanced copyright. Even those who'd support strong copyright protections with clear fair use provisions.
John sees "free culture theorists" behind every bush.
Consumers wishing to backup a game or use a media server have been brain washed by the "free culture theorists" and it will be no time at all before they're downloading huge libraries of creative works illegally.
It's all a big conspiracy surrounding the copy left. Perhaps John could chair an investigation into these people. A Joe McCarthy for the copy left scare, a committee for anti-copyright activities. BOO!

Sandy Crawley said...

Right Gruesome. The Tooth Fairy, the Easter Bunny and Santa a real but there's no such thing as the Pirate Party.

Scrawley said...

should read "are real"....

Gruesome said...

@sandy and there were real communists spies during the McCarty era as well, doesn't mean paranoia justifies everything.

Gruesome said...

Not to mention labeling every one as "free culture", I'm a photographer, I'm a strong believer in copyright and strong deterrents to copyright infringement. But this continued assault against consumer rights that Degen thinks ends at the purchase is an affront to consumers but also to creators.
As a creator I and many others realize that tpm's are largely beyond our control.
It's just another tool to make consumers pay more than once and to take control of creators work.
trying to tag me as copy left is absurd since I don't think the current bill goes far enough to fight infringement.
I guess that makes me a copy left/right extremist.
What I really am is an advocate for a healthy symbiotic relationship between consumer and creator.
If there isn't balance both loose.
If consumers think they're being short changed, if it's not true, does it matter?

The Internet Copyright Discussion Drinking Game said...

Rule #41: A commenter references Sony rootkit: take 2 shots.

Pieter Hulshoff said...

The bill decriminalizes specific acts around content, as long as the content owner gives permission in the transfer. Why is that so difficult to understand?

That's not what bills are supposed to do. Bills are supposed to criminalize certain acts, unless the content owner gives permission. What use is an exception to copyright if I need the content owner's permission to use it? It might as well not have been in the bill, and I could still do it with the permission.

Pieter Hulshoff said...

@Sandy,

Those who commit copyright infringement are not bothered by TPMs. Most of them don't see the TPM to begin with (since they've already been stripped by the time they get the files), and the few that do are laughing over the simplicity of breaking them.

The people who are bothered by TPMs are the honest customers who actually buy their books/cds/dvds/blu-rays.I encounter it daily when I'm forced to watch the same preview I've seen 100s of times, because some idiot thought it was a good idea to make them unskippable, and it's illegal to make a dvd player that ignores that warning. I encounter it when I want to play a dvd on my Linux machine, and find that doing so is illegal due to the anti-circumvention laws. I encounter it when I want to rip my dvd to my hard-drive so I can play it from my media server rather than risk scratching my disk with use.

Anti-circumvention laws don't accomplish anything. They make something that was already illegal a little bit more illegal, and at the same time frustrate honest purchasing customers. They don't make much sense to begin with, but when they make legal day to day customer activities illegal they work counter productive, because they erode the respect that people have for copyright law.

Like Gruesome, I too am a strong supporter of copyright, and I believe that eroding people's respect for copyright with anti-circumvention laws is a bad move.

Gruesome said...

"It might as well not have been in the bill, and I could still do it with the permission."
Pieter that's a great point , and why you're unlikely to get a response from tpm John.
If It's legal it should be legal regardless of tpm's. Tpm protection is another layer of law we don't need.
John tries to throw out trespassing signs as flawed as the analogy is, I guess that means we should be putting up don't assault me signs.

John said...

Around and 'round we go.

Pieter and Gruesome - I understand you disagree with my opinion on TPMs. I am not trying to convince you otherwise. I'm simply happy that the discussion is being taken more seriously in Ottawa than it is on Geist's blog.

Gruesome, you shouldn't feel labeled or lumped into any group, especially not here. My references to free culture theorists and the copyleft should not be so oblique folks can't figure out exactly who I'm talking about.

But I do take offense to the Sen. McCarthy references. As you should all know, I'm the only one in this discussion who has actually suffered blacklisting and censorship because of what I say about copyright.

I am a working, professional creator and I feel I hjave an excellent relationship with the consumers of my work. I am also a consumer of culture. The emergency of consumer "rights" does not touch me in any way.

Chris A. proves my point about TPMs in the marketplace. First of all, the provide important market definition. You know what you're getting from a BluRay or Kindle product. Secondly, the market allows consumers to choose whether or not they want those products on those terms. Chris' wife is clearly okay with Kindle TPMs, while he is not. Delightful.

I wonder if Kindle is suffering from the fact that their TPMs "frustrate" honest concumers?

Anyway, the "best comment of the thread" award goes to the drinking game person. That made me laugh out loud.

Chris A said...

"Chris A. proves my point about TPMs in the marketplace. First of all, the provide important market definition. You know what you're getting from a BluRay or Kindle product. Secondly, the market allows consumers to choose whether or not they want those products on those terms. Chris' wife is clearly okay with Kindle TPMs, while he is not. Delightful.

I wonder if Kindle is suffering from the fact that their TPMs "frustrate" honest concumers?"

And when the market takes away all the choices, as they ahve been moving towards since the invention of digital media? Because if you haven't noticed, the media companies are trying their best to phase out DVDs as fast as possible.

I'm sorry, but you're not going to convince me that the TPM protections are a good thing for consumers at all. For creators, I notice you never answer my question about how it helps you at all, but I know you like to pick and choose what you address rather than addressing the whole thing most times.

Chris A said...

As for me and DRM, there are some that I'm okay with and other that I'm not, as I've indicated in the past about discussions with it. Doesn't mean I think that they are remotely a good thing to be protected by law in any form whatsoever.

As for your remark about the Kindle, yeah it could be very inconveniencing of the consumer wants to switch to a different reader that can't read Amazon's kindle format at all, and they can't access their books because breaking the TPM is against the law. Or move a book they got in ePub format that's TPM protected to something their Kindle can read. You really need to do more research and put more thought into your arguments John, it's sometimes like you auto reply without thinking about the whole picture.

John said...

... and around, and around.

Keep proving my point, Chris. It's helpful.

So, if the consumer does not want to buy an e-book in a proprietary format that will keep her from transfering it to other platforms, not only does she have the "right" not to buy that e-book, but Kindle (or whomever) has suddenly provided the market with a segmented buyer just ripe for open format publishing product.

Why the open format folks aren't loudly applauding TPM protection is beyond me. Could it have something to do with their own inability (or unwillingness) to pay for content?

Zero emergency... except perhaps for folks whose business model is built on not paying. Pardon me while I don't feel sorry for those folks.

And now, let me take the opportunity to apologize for the scandalous number of typos in my last comment.

Chris A said...

"Keep proving my point, Chris. It's helpful. "

It's so very amusing that you think this. It really is. Makes it convenient so you don't have to actually answer questions.

"So, if the consumer does not want to buy an e-book in a proprietary format that will keep her from transfering it to other platforms, not only does she have the "right" not to buy that e-book, but Kindle (or whomever) has suddenly provided the market with a segmented buyer just ripe for open format publishing product."

Except for the fact that, you know, things are moving more and more towards this. Books are just one example, which yes does have some open formats. Not everyone does, nor does the fact that the consumer "has a choice" really make TPM something that needs to be legally protected (which I notice you still haven't addressed why this is needed at all).

"Why the open format folks aren't loudly applauding TPM protection is beyond me. Could it have something to do with their own inability (or unwillingness) to pay for content?"

Not really, it's more like lack of choice. Just because there are options doesn't make the options worth it.

"Zero emergency... except perhaps for folks whose business model is built on not paying. Pardon me while I don't feel sorry for those folks."

Except for consumer expectation, which pretty much is that they can do things with the things they buy that TPM prevents them form doing, which you still also have yet to address. But hey, keep on thinking I'm proving your point rather than, you know, actually trying to read what's being said.

BTW, when are you going to tell me who TPMs actually benefit since you have yet to explain how they benefit you, as a creator, and me as a consumer? I can keep on asking this question everywhere you happen to post that I read if you decide to not address it.

Pieter Hulshoff said...

Dear John,

I'm sure we'd all appreciate it if you actually answered some of the points people were making in stead of going round and round on your points of view.

Please tell me the difference from a consumer standpoint between:
1. Something illegal by law, but legal if I get permission from the content owner.
2. Something legal by law, but for which I have to get permission from the content owner unless I want to be guilty of breaking an anti-circumvention law.
If this is your idea of copyright law, why have any exceptions in there at all?

Why the open format folks aren't loudly applauding TPM protection is beyond me.

Open formats are not going to help me much if the content isn't made available in it by the content owners, now is it? Please tell me where I can buy a TPM free blu-ray disk with the movies I want, and I'll gladly buy them in stead of the alternative. As a consumer, I sure as hell didn't wake up one morning thinking: "I wish someone would think of a way so I could do less with the content I bought."

Chris A said...

On the note of where we can buy DRM free Bluray, I'd also like to know where we can get DRM free DVDs.

John said...

Chris,

Your inability to discern an explanation is a very different thing from my supposed refusal to provide one. We are both commenting on MY blog, after all, on one of hundreds of postings I have made about copyright reform in Canada.

What is it about market definition and segmentation that you need explained more fully?

How many times do I need to explain that I believe extreme TPMs are essentially vestigial and will disappear -- at least anything approximating a "lock" certainly will?

That they will eventually disappear, and that they are completely breakable... these things are pointless considerations in the question of whether or not they need to be protected.

They DO need to be protected because they are creator choices over intellectual property. And as long as creators still own their intellectual property, as opposed to the copies of that IP that they sell (you do know the difference between content and its copies, right?), as long as creator choices are still the focus of copyright law, then TPMs need legal protection.

Remove legal protection for creator choices, and you weaken the very underpinnings of copyright. Now, In know neither YOU nor Gruesome want that, but others do. My fight is with them.

Pieter Hulshoff said...

as long as creator choices are still the focus of copyright law, then TPMs need legal protection.

Copyright law focuses on creator choices within the limits of the rights granted to them by law. A creator is given certain rights by copyright law, which they can chose to enforce or to give up. There are also certain rights creators were not given by copyright law, and if they chose to use TPMs to grant themselves such rights, they should not gain legal protection for it. As such, there is no reason whatsoever for the lawmaker not to grant TPM protection only for the rights creators have been given, and leave people free to break TPMs if content owners chose to grab rights that don't belong to them in the first place.

Chris A said...

"What is it about market definition and segmentation that you need explained more fully?"

Nothing really, I get that perfectly fine. That doesn't affect my argument though, which if you think it does really shows how you are not understanding my arguments.

As for the legal protection of TPMs needed, you as a creator already have legal protection, it's called Copyright law. So it pretty much makes needing to legally protect TPMs something that is not needed since you already have protections.

Chris A said...

And if copyright protection isn't enough, what about copyright is not enough to protect your content that you feel the need to take away consumer rights granted by copyright?

Gruesome said...

John, who hasn't been blocked from commenting on a website, just mentioning one problem I had with drm got me blocked from a pro extreme copyright website.
As for this mysterious list, Senator could you please point it out to me where I will gladly denounce it.

Gruesome said...

I'd like to address another fabrication of yours, " Without legal protection for your No Trespassing signs, anyone can rip them down and trespass at will. Worse yet, anyone can profit from their trespass on your property."
So without these No Trespassing Signs there's no copyright infringement. Man I don't think the Music industry will be happy with that.
Lets see the logic here
If there's a tpm and I break it, I've broken the law, if I step further and infringe I've broken the law.
Is it the double whammy that has you so enamored?
Even James Gannons example of why tpm's are needed is a total load of crap
"Without this condition, the technologies that enable certain business models such as ad-supported streaming (i.e. YouTube), trial software, digital rentals and previews are completely undermined. "
In none of those cases does is unfettered copying allowed. In every case you'd be breaking copyright for something you don't own.
So again if these are warning signs, then those that wish to ignore them already know there illegal intent.
Again tpm's only frustrate the people that support us.