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But if you're a teacher, you can rip DVDs

There's no doubt in the world that Apple's iPod is leading the race in terms of sales, popularity, and social status. Apple has done an incredible job at keeping its multimedia pocket-wizard at the top of people's wish lists. Out of the three available flavors of the iPod, the video iPod is Apple's flagship; able to play not only music but also games and full length movies. Despite its features however, movie playback is where controversy has stirred.

This week, the US Library of Congress rejected a petition that would allow US iPod owners from copying movies that they own, onto their iPods. This does not mean that users can't copy movies over -- they would have to purchase licensed iPod versions from Apple's iTunes store. According to the rejection, users are not allowed to rip DVDs that they own for use on their iPods. Ripping DVDs by nature is against a number of legal rules and regulations and is definitely frowned upon by the MPAA.

The original petition submitted to Congress was written by the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), which is responsible for defending the rights of many media publications and independent organizations. The petition argued that DVD ripping software was now mainstream, and should be accepted as part of business as well as personal use. The EFF also indicated that if the user owned an original copy of a movie, they should be able to watch it on their iPod.

Despite the MPAA's stance that DVD copying and ripping hurts the industry, the EFF argued the following:

The empirical evidence proves just the opposite. During the previous exemption period,
DVD sales and profitability continued to grow at an astonishing pace.29 In fact, DVD sales have proven to be more profitable for motion picture studios in recent years than the formats they replaced, even at a time when DVD ripping software has been popular.30 In addition, major motion picture studios have continued to release new DVD titles in ever-increasing numbers.

The EFF also noted the following about CSS encryption:

Whatever the contribution of CSS to the availability of content on DVD may have been in the past, today the motion picture industry’s willingness to release material on DVD is plainly not correlated to any security provided by CSS.

iPod owners will have to purchase and download legal movies from Apple's online store, which in many cases means that they will have duplicate copies of movies they already own. Despite the ongoing restriction on DVD ripping and copying, the Library of Congress has allowed limited ripping for use in an educational environment only. Professors and instructors in the video industry are allowed to rip DVDs to create clips and instructional materials for teaching.

Movie studios argued that the education industry should be using lower quality VHS rips instead of using DVDs -- even with Congress's blessing.

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A grammatical train wreck
By Delegator on 11/27/2006 6:14:25 PM , Rating: 5
I don't generally rip on grammar of things I see on the web, but this article is a real mess.

First, here's the real deal: the copyright office of the Library of Congress has rejected a petition that would allow owners of DVDs to rip those discs for use on mobile devices.

That's not "Congress", it's the Copyright Office of the Library of Congress, or the Copyright Office for short. It's an administrative ruling based on current law, particularly the "fair use" doctrine that made it legal to do things like record shows on your VCR for private home viewing.

The second paragraph of the original article is the one that makes no sense at all:


This week, the US Library of Congress rejected a petition that would allow US iPod owners from copying movies that they own, onto their iPods.

First of all, you don't allow users "from" something, you either allow them "to" something or prevent them from it. Rejecting a petition that allows owners from... Huh?


This does not mean that users can't copy movies over -- they would have to purchase licensed iPod versions from Apple's iTunes store.

The word "not" makes this sentence both internally inconsistent and incorrect. This DOES mean that users can't copy movies over. The fact that you would have to purchase the movie also says that you can't copy it.

So, aside from playing fast and loose with facts and names, and using grammar that makes the whole thing both incorrect and incomprehensible, it was right on target.

RE: A grammatical train wreck
By DigitalFreak on 11/27/2006 6:38:01 PM , Rating: 2
My thoughts exactly. I saw the title and thought that Congress passed some law banning ripping DVDs to the iPod. Not even close.

I don't know if English is a second language to the person who writes these news stories, but they need some major help! Either that, or just cut and paste from CNN or something.

"I'm an Internet expert too. It's all right to wire the industrial zone only, but there are many problems if other regions of the North are wired." -- North Korean Supreme Commander Kim Jong-il

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