“After the iPod gained the ability to play videos, services sprung up that would rip your DVDs and reencode them for viewing on your iPod. Useful, but illegal in the US. The Motion Picture Association of America has decided to sue one of those DVD ripping and reeconding services. Earlier this month, Load ‘N Go Video was sued by Paramount Pictures in the US District Court for the Southern District of New York. The suit accuses Load ‘N Go Video of copyright infringement and violating the Digital Millennium Copyright Act,” Eric Bangeman reports for Ars Technica.
“Based in Boston, Load N’ Go was founded in 2005 to help consumers get video content on to their portable media players. Load N’ Go also sells iPods and DVDs, and will rip DVDs for its customers and load them on to their iPods. The customer then gets the iPod with the movies loaded on it and a copy of the DVD that she legally purchased,” Bangeman reports. “The DMCA makes it illegal to circumvent copy protection, even for fair use purposes, so Load N’ Go’s prospects do not look good. The implications of this case are even more troubling. Not only could the MPAA sue any other companies performing similar services, but they clearly believe that they can sue you for ripping DVDs and moving the content to your iPod or other digital media player.”
Full article here.
The DMCA is flawed. Consumers should not have to buy two copies of the same material in order to view it their DVD player and also on their iPod. How many times do we have to buy the same thing? The answer should be once. Are we really pirates if we’ve legally purchased a DVD and want to make a copy of it to watch on our iPods? The DMCA makes a mess of fair use and that mess should be corrected.