UK makes CD, DVD disc ripping legal, won’t block sites that host copyrighted content

“Vince Cable, the United Kingdom’s Business secretary, has announced major changes to that country’s copyright law concerning digital media,” iPodNN reports.

“The government will legalize “format shifting,” or allowing consumers to rip content from CDs and DVDs for personal use,” iPodNN reports. “The government will also reverse part of last year’s Digital Enforcement Act, which would have blocked websites for hosting copyrighted material.”

iPodNN reports, Cable said the law needed to change to conform to reasonable expectations of consumers. ‘We’ve got to bring law in line with reality,’ he said.”

Read more in the full article here.
 

20 Comments

  1. “‘We’ve got to bring law in line with reality,’ he said.”

    Don’t hold your breath for that to happen in the good of US of A! “Wee hang content rustlers around here,” says a spokesman for the US (in)Justice Dept.

    1. The problem is, the content companies here still think they can define “reality” in their own image, rather than dealing with actual reality.

      But then, they’re in the entertainment industry, meaning their grasp of “reality” is already tenuous and fictionalized, so I suppose that makes sense. 😉

  2. I agree with this only if the rights of the content holders are preserved as well. If I buy a dvd, I should be able to rip it myself or download a rip from a legitimate source, but anyone who has not paid for the content should not. How do you enforce that via a website?

    I think current DRM laws here in the US are overboard now, but you can’t just make distributing copies legal either.

  3. Format shifting for personal use is good and reasonable. Creating a copy of CD for an iPod is fair use and should not be a criminal act. BUT, allowing someone to host accessible files on websites? That literally robs the producer of that product of legitimate potential revenue. If it is what it sounds like, Mr. Cable has gone too far.

    1. “BUT, allowing someone to host accessible files on websites? That literally robs the producer of that product of legitimate potential revenue. If it is what it sounds like, Mr. Cable has gone too far.”
      It doesn’t say that at all.
      “The government will also reverse part of last year’s Digital Enforcement Act, which would have blocked websites for hosting copyrighted material.”
      The won’t be wasting time by trying to do the impossible because everytime one gets blocked another pops up. Giving the networks the right to throttle consumers download speed or cut them off on the slightest pretext is the thin edge of the wedge.

    2. The problem is that the content industry’s usual blunt hammer approach to solving these problems treats free speech as acceptable collateral damage. How many times have we seen stories of bogus copyright infringement claims taking down legitimate blogs or Facebook pages?

      This move accepts the reality that site blocking is an unrealistic solution to the problem.

    1. Maybe the US should join Britain in modern times, e.g. with greater life expectancy, greater HEALTHY life expectancy, lower infant mortality, greater reported sense of well-being and so on.

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