[opendtv] Re: Is 'Fair Use' in Peril?

  • From: johnwillkie@xxxxxxxxxx
  • To: opendtv@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Thu, 25 Nov 2004 11:36:08 -0800 (PST)

Time to get a grip, Tom & Cliff.  "Big Brother" had power because the TV
was two way, you could not turn it off, and it was in every room of the
house, save the smallest room.

Just because bills are proposed does not mean that they will pass.  Just
because they were proposed with one set of language does not mean that
they will pass with that language.  Just because they pass does not mean
that they are signed into law by the President.

Only a small percentage of Americans fast forward through commercials. 
Maybe as MUCH as 2% of the population.  Probably much smaller.

If this passes, few people will notice anything new or different.

And, I trust that it will not pass in the lame-duck session of Congress,
between the holidays.  The f*****s have yet to pass 9 of the 13 spending
bills for the fiscal year that began October 1.  Not to mention the bad
language they did pass last week (that will require a voice vote)
permitting appropriations committee heads and their staff to look at tax
returns.

Yeah, this stuff is more important than the government having a budget. 
Also, aren't these bills favored by Democrats?

Time to get a life guys.

John Willkie

> Here is a warning to Congress.
>
> If this passes, every moment a viewer spends watching commercials will
> be a testimonial and obvious reminder to the public of how much our
> legislators are controlled by special interests without the public good
> in mind.  The issue will become a joke and a topic of conversation to
> drown out those commercials.   It will be a ubiquitous and perpetual
> public nuisance until this very bad law is repealed.
>
> Imagine how many times per day this issue will be brought right into
> viewers living rooms by those same advertisers that are asking for it.
>
> - Tom
>
>
> cbenham@xxxxxxxxxxx wrote:
>> Would it also be illegal to change channels to avoid commercials?
>> Would it be illegal to use the mute button on your remote control?
>> Would it be illegal to turn off your TV for 2 minutes to avoid
>> commercials?
>> Would it be illegal to go to the bathroom during commercials?
>> Would it illegal to discuss the football game during the commercials?
>> If the power goes off can you be fined for missing a commercial?
>>
>> Just really wondering how much big brother control these silly asses
>> think the public will put up with?
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>>URL:
>>> http://www.technologyreview.com/articles/04/11/wo_hellweg111904.asp?p=1
>>>[Massachusetts Institute of Technology]
>>>
>>>Is 'Fair Use' in Peril?
>>>The far-reaching Intellectual Property Protection Act would deny
>>> consumers many
>>>of the freed
> oms they take for granted.
>>>
>>>By Eric Hellweg
>>>November 19, 2004
>>>
>>>Do you like fast-forwarding through commercials on a television program
>>> you've
>>>recorded? How much do you like it? Enough to go to jail if you're caught
>>> doing
>>>it? If a new copyright and intellectual property omnibus bill sitting on
>>>Congress's desk passes, that may be the choice you'll face.
>>>
>>>How can this be possible? Because language that makes fast-forwarding
>>> through
>>>commercials illegal -- no doubt inserted at the behest of lobbyists for
>>> the
>>>advertising industry -- was inserted into a bill that would allow people
>>> to fast
>>>forward past objectionable sections of a recorded movie (and I bet you
>>> already
>>>thought that was OK). And that's but one, albeit scary, scenario that
>>> may come
>>>to pass if the Intellectual Property Protection Act is enacted into law.
>>>Deliberations on this legislation will be one of the tasks for the
>>> lame-duck
>>>Congress that commenced this week.
>>>
>>>In a statement last month, Senator John McCain stated his opposition to
>>> this
>>>bill, and specifically cited the anti-commercial skipping feature:
>>> "Americans
>>>have been recording TV shows and fast-forwarding through commercials for
>>> 30
>>>years," he said. "Do we really expect to throw people in jail in 2004
>>> for
>>>behavior they've been engaged in for more than a quarter century?"
>>>
>>>Included in the legislation are eight separate bills, five of which have
>>> already
>>>passed one branch of Congress, one of which was approved by the Senate
>>> Judiciary
>>>Committee, and two of which have merely been proposed. By lumping all
>>> the bills
>>>together and pushing the package through both houses of Congress,
>>> proponents
>>>hope to score an enormous victory for Hollywood and some content
>>> industries.
>>>
>>>Here's more of what's included: a provision that would make it a felony
>>> to
>>>record a movie in a theater for future distribution on a peer-to-peer
>>> network.
>>>IPPA would also criminalize the currently legal act of using the sharing
>>>capacity of iTunes, Apple's popular music software program; the
>>> legislation
>>>equates that act with the indiscriminate file sharing on popular
>>> peer-to-peer
>>>programs. Currently, with iTunes, users can opt to share a playlist with
>>> others
>>>on their network. IPPA doesn't differentiate this innocuous -- and Apple
>>>sanctioned -- act from the promiscuous sharing that happens when someone
>>> makes a
>>>music collection available to five million strangers on Kazaa or
>>> Grokster.
>>>
>>>Not surprisingly, the bill has become a focal point for very vocal
>>> parties. In
>>>favor of the legislation are groups such as the Recording Industry
>>> Association
>>>of America, the Motion Picture Association of America, and various
>>> songwriter,
>>>actor, and director organizations. "We certainly support it," says
>>> Jonathan
>>>Lamy, spokesperson for the RIAA. "It includes a number of things to
>>> strengthen
>>>the hand of law enforcement to combat piracy. Intellectual property
>>> theft is a
>>>national security crime. It's appropriate that the fed dedicate
>>> resources to
>>>deter and prosecute IP theft."
>>>
>>>Against the bill stand a number of technology lobbying groups and
>>>public-interest organizations. "[IPPA] is a cobbled-together package to
>>> which
>>>Congress has given inadequate attention. It is another step in Hollywood
>>> and the
>>>recording industry's campaign to exert more control over content," says
>>> Gigi
>>>Sohn, president of Public Knowledge, a Washington, DC-based public
>>> interest
>>>group that aims to alert the public to fair use and consumer rights
>>>infringements, and fight those perceived infringements in Washington.
>>>
>>>Anyone attuned to the machinations of Congress the last two years likely
>>> has
>>>become numb to the often overblown rhetoric on this issue. Both sides
>>> use
>>>hyperbole -- usually in the form of calling a piece of legislation the
>>> death of
>>>an industry or the death of individual rights. The 1982 statement to a
>>>congressional committee by Jack Valenti, then head of the MPAA, that the
>>> VCR is
>>>to Hollywood what the Boston Strangler was to a woman alone still stands
>>> as the
>>>ne plus ultra of exaggerated claims. And civil libertarians haven't met
>>> an
>>>affront that didn't equal a stake through the heart of individual
>>> rights. But
>>>IPPA demands attention not just from Hill watchers, but from regular
>>>individuals. In part because IPPA is such a broad, encompassing bill
>>> that could
>>>affect things as pedestrian as fast-forwarding a commercial, but also
>>> because
>>>with Senator Orrin Hatch -- a very Hollywood-friendly pol -- on his way
>>> out as
>>>the chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, to be replaced possibly by
>>> Arlen
>>>Specter, many in the Hollywood community see this as an important, last
>>> chance
>>>to get their demands made into law.
>>>
>>>
>>>Eric Hellweg is a technology writer based in Cambridge, MA.
>>>
>>>Copyright 2004 Technology Review, Inc.
>>>
>>>
>>>
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