Tuesday, September 14, 2004

More on INDUCE

Today's the day for the SaveBetamax.org call-in. Over 4200 people have signed up; I'm one of them, and I'll be calling not only the assigned people, but all of the folks of whom I am a constituent.

But I found a wrinkle. This site has a link to new proposed verbiage by the Copyright Office that addresses concerns that just about everybody has with the original/current INDUCE text trashing the Betamax decision, making the iPod illegal, etc. I've read the proposed text, and it addresses what I feel are the problems with today's sharing world.

First, the proposed text makes the distinction of "public dissemination", making it possible for P2P to continue to exist, as long as it doesn't infringe, and making it impossible to go after the iPod or the VCR (or even DVDXCopy), as they're private mechanisms. Second, it attacks acts, not technology; it goes after the infringers' system, and limits injunctions to stopping infringement (not stopping the technology used to infringe).

The EFF doesn't like the new text, either, saying that it "undermines the Betamax doctrine". Of course, the Betamax decision made no public/private distinction, as at the time, there was no reason to, and as mentioned, while the new text would make life hard for infringing P2P networks, (the new text describes networks that "[rely] on infringing public dissemination for [their] commercial viability"), it wouldn't affect fair use rights at all, that I can see.

Anyway, as I mentioned, I'll be taking part in the call-in, but in doing so, will be praising both HR4077 and the new Copyright Office proposed text.

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