America's broken digital copyright law is about to be challenged in court

Error message

  • Warning: Invalid argument supplied for foreach() in similarterms_taxonomy_node_get_terms() (line 517 of /usr/local/www/apache24/htdocs/infoshopnews/sites/all/modules/similarterms/similarterms.module).
  • Notice: Undefined offset: 0 in similarterms_list() (line 221 of /usr/local/www/apache24/htdocs/infoshopnews/sites/all/modules/similarterms/similarterms.module).
  • Notice: Undefined offset: 1 in similarterms_list() (line 222 of /usr/local/www/apache24/htdocs/infoshopnews/sites/all/modules/similarterms/similarterms.module).
RSS icon
Reddit icon
e-mail icon

The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) filed a lawsuit on Thursday that American copyright wonks, technologists and security researchers have been hotly awaiting for nearly 20 years.

If they succeed, one of America’s most controversial technology laws will be struck down, and countries all over the world who have been pressured by the US trade representative to adopt this American rule will have to figure out whether they’ll still enforce it, even after the US has given up on it.

The rule is section 1201 of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) of 1998, the “anti-circumvention” rule that makes it illegal to break an “access control” for copyrighted works. These “access controls” often manifest as “digital rights management” (DRM), and the DMCA gives them unique standing in law.

EFF is suing the US government, arguing that section 1201 of the DMCA is unconstitutional, and also that the Library of Congress and the copyright office have failed to perform their duties in the three-year DMCA 1201 exemption hearings.

What is digital rights management?

If you buy something, it’s yours, and – you can modify, configure, or use it any way you’d like, even if the manufacturer would prefer that you didn’t. But the law forbids you from doing otherwise legal things if you have to tamper with the DRM to do them.

Read more

Article category: 
Rate this article: 
No votes yet