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  • ARCHIVED DVD NEWS For : 28th January 2000


    DeCSS in court - Part III

    Father and son arrested over DeCSS code

    First the lawsuits were filed. Then the injunctions were granted. And now the arrests have begun.

    Jon Johansen was arrested early Tuesday at his home in Norway. He's accused of writing DeCSS, the program that reverse engineered the DVD encryption scheme.

    The 16-year-old says the program was written for the sole purpose of allowing DVD's to be played on the Linux operating system. The Motion Picture Association of America claims he broke intellectual property laws.

    His father was also arrested because the web site was in his name. What's particularly interesting is that the two had already removed the source code from the site after being threatened by the MPAA. As any schoolkid knows, agreeing to a bully's terms rarely makes things any better.

    This situation is continuing to deteriorate on a daily basis. If the MPAA thugs are able to get a kid and his father arrested in a distant country, one can only imagine what they have planned for the "violators" in this country.

    Legal action has forced us to remove the DeCSS code from our site. It has NOT forced us to remove links to the growing number of sites worldwide that were not affected. And no court action in the world will ever stop us from speaking out against this insane abuse of power against free-thinking people everywhere.

    We call on our readers to fight the MPAA on all fronts. Picket their offices, call them, fax them your opinion, educate the media, hand out leaflets outside your local movie theatre, and target each and every one of the companies that has signed onto this action.

    Head on to our Forum, to share your opinions on the latest teen arrest

    Other related articles :

  • In Defense of Free Speech on the Internet: Global Internet Liberty Campaign (GILC) Releases Statement Opposing DVD Suit

  • Norwegian Teen Becomes Industry's Latest Test Case - EFF Press Release

  • Jon Lech Johansen's brief initial statement on DeCSS raid

  • CNN Coverage

  • Norwegian coverage (in English)

  • Motion Picture Association of America
    15503 Ventura Blvd.
    Encino, CA 91436
    (818) 995-6600

    Universal City Studios
    100 Universal City Plaza
    Universal City, CA 91608
    (818) 777-1000

    Paramount Pictures
    1633 Broadway # 1801
    New York, NY 10019
    (212) 654-7000
    5555 Melrose Ave
    Los Angeles, CA 90038

    Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios
    1350 Avenue Of Americas
    New York, NY 10019
    (212) 708-0300
    2500 Broadway
    Santa Monica, CA 90404
    (310) 449-3000

    Columbia Pictures
    Tristar Pictures

    555 Madison Ave Fl 9
    New York, NY 10022
    (212) 833-6100
    10202 Washington Blvd
    Culver City, CA 90232
    (310) 244-4000

    Time Warner Entertainment
    75 Rockefeller Plaza
    New York, NY 10019
    (212) 484-8000

    Disney Enterprises
    500 S Buena Vista St
    Burbank, CA 91521
    (818) 560-1111

    Twentieth Century Fox
    10201 W Pico Blvd
    Los Angeles, CA 90064
    (310) 369-1000

    The opinions expressed in this article does not neccessarily convey the opinion of Digital (DVD) Digest.
    sourced from :

    Preliminary Injunction granted for both CA and NY cases - 24th January 2000

    In two separate court cases against defendants who have allegedly distributed the controversial DVD decoding program, DeCSS, the courts (in the state of New York and California) have granted a Preliminary Injunction against the defendants.

    This is the first defeat for the defendants, represented by the EFF (Electronic Frontier Foundation - see their press release below), although the war is far from lost.

    This injunction prohibits any sites (up to 500 named) from distributing DeCSS, although for the California case, it is only enforceble in the state of California. However, linking to sites that has DeCSS, has been left out of this injunction by the Californian court, stating that "Links to other websites are the mainstay of the Internet and indispensable to its convenient access to the vast world of information. A website owner cannot be held responsible for all of the content of the sites to which it provides links".

    RIAA hits lawsuit at - 24th January 2000

    The RIAA (Record Industry Association of America) has also strategically fired a lawsuit at, a multi-billion dollar online music website. This comes on the same day as the Preliminary injunction was issued for both the New York and Californian DeCSS hearings.

    The RIAA, and association similar to the MPAA (who is the plaintiff in both both the New York and Conneticutt DeCSS claims), has been known for it's battle with the mp3 format (just like the MPAA has recently been known for it's battle against DeCSS), which allows users to have CD quality music in a small and easily distributed format. DeCSS does not make distributing or pirating DVDs any easier. It is merely a required process in the development of a open-source DVD player for the very popular Linux OS platform.

    You can read more about this new MP3 case here : - RIAA sues

    Three Netizens Silenced by Motion Picture Industry in Early DVD Court Order

    Electronic Frontier Foundation Press Release - EFF Vows to Continue Legal Fight

    San Francisco -- During a three-hour hearing today in the Southern District of New York, Federal Judge Lewis Kaplan granted a preliminary injunction against three defendants sued by the very well funded Motion Picture Association of American (MPAA) over distribution of the DeCSS DVD descrambling program on the Internet. As a result, the defendants have been ordered to take down the offending material from their Web sites. The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), which is a nonprofit organization providing pro bono legal counsel in this case and several others, vowed to continue to support the important free speech rights of the defendants.

    "While we are clearly disappointed with today's decision, not all has been lost," said EFF's Executive Director Tara Lemmey. "Judge Kaplan's ruling is very narrowly tailored and does not impact on the rights of others linking to, discussing, or publishing technical information on the weak encryption built into DVDs."

    EFF, which is leading the defense in a similar case brought in California, believes that the industry continues to inappropriately label speech about the technical insecurity of DVD as if it involved stealing digital copies of movies.

    "Whether industry argues this under trade secret law or the new Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), these cases are not about piracy or hacking," added Lemmey. "They are about censorship of speech critical to science, education, and innovation." Reverse engineering is well-understood by the technical community as both legitimate and important for systems interoperability. In addition, it is invaluable to the open source movement for creating new products that can compete with Windows and other operating systems.

    "Today's decision is a major wake up call for the $30 billion Linux community," said EFF Co-founder John Gilmore. "If Judge Kaplan's reading of the DMCA holds, then it will become illegal to build open source products that can interoperate and/or compete with proprietary ones for displaying copyrighted content."

    EFF Staff Attorney Robin Gross agreed and added: "If this ruling is upheld, it would be a huge blow to fair use," which gives people the right to make copies for personal use without the author's permission. "The DMCA specifically states it does not impact fair use rights, but if this interpretation of the statute holds -- that people may no longer provide the tools for engaging in fair use -- then the privilege is meaningless."

    Defendants were represented by New York lawyer Peter Katz in the judge's chambers, with Robin Gross, EFF, and Allonn Levy, Huber-Samuelson APC in San Jose, participating telephonically from San Francisco. The case is expected to proceed to trial very soon. Today's order will stand pending further review. There are still several issues to be explored considering that one of the defendants is an Internet Service Provider, who should not be liable under the law for clients' posting of DeCSS, and another one is a journalist covering these issues in the online media.

    EFF will continue fighting the industry's first attempt to censor Web sites discussing DVD technology, an action brought by the DVD Copy Control Association (DVD-CCA), an industry trade group in California. In that case, EFF is sponsoring the legal defense of Andrew Bunner, the sole defendant to come forward. All of these steps are part of EFF's Campaign for Audiovisual Free Expression (CAFE), which it launched last summer to address complex societal and legal issues raised by new technological measures for protecting intellectual property rights.

    For complete information on the MPAA and DVD-CCA cases, see:

    For the full text of the judge's order for preliminary injunction, see:

    To learn more about EFF's Campaign for Audiovisual Free Expression, see:

    - - - - -

    The Electronic Frontier Foundation ( is the leading global nonprofit organization linking technical architectures with legal frameworks to support the rights of individuals in an open society. Founded in 1990, EFF actively encourages and challenges industry and government to support free expression, privacy, and openness in the information society. EFF is a member-supported organization and maintains one of the most-linked-to Web sites in the world.

    The opinions expressed in this article does not neccessarily convey the opinion of Digital (DVD) Digest.
    sourced from :


    News Archive
    JANUARY 28th, 2000
    DeCSS in court - Part III

    JANUARY 18th, 2000
    DeCSS in court - Part II

    JANUARY 12th, 2000
    DeCSS in court - Part I

    NOVEMBER 30th, 1999
    CNET vs MPAA - clash of the titans
    Anamorphic DVDs - do we need them ?
    DVD Pricing - too high ?

    NOVEMBER 19th, 1999
    Buying DVDs @ ...
    Special Editions - What's so special about them ...

    NOVEMBER 13th, 1999
    Saving Private Ryan storms the DVD Top sales lists ...
    More closures of DVD Ripping and conversion sites ...

    NOVEMBER 4th, 1999
    MPAA starts closing down "DVD Ripping" site. Illegal bullying tactics used ...
    RPC-2 Hacked? Make your Pioneer 114 drive region free at last .... but there are a few catches!!
    DVD Piracy - WHY it will never take off
    What makes Saving Private Ryan so good - technology and visual wise

    NOVEMBER 3rd, 1999
    DeCSS making DVD piracy easier? Official statement from DVD DIGEST regarding this issue...

    NOVEMBER 2nd, 1999
    The Matrix makes makes way for Blair Witch...
    New Nvidia Drivers makes DVD playing even better ...
    Hollywood+ v1.8 Drivers - many fixes and improvements...
    Read about DTS Music CDs ...
    Saving Private Ryan Limited DTS version DELAYED ?!? ...
    30-50% off DVDs - they don't last forever ...

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