January 07, 2003
Johansen Not Guilty in DeCSS case
The MPAA gets another major set back. FoxNews reports:
Head judge Irene Sogn, in reading the verdict, said no one could be convicted of breaking into their own property, and that there was no proof that Johansen or others had used the program to access illegal pirate copies of films.
"The court finds that someone who buys a DVD film that has been legally produced has legal access the film. Something else would apply if the film had been an illegal ... pirate copy," the ruling said.
It found that consumers have rights to legally obtained DVD films "even if the films are played in a different way than the makers had foreseen."
I do find it interesting that courts seem to be ruling that criminal intent is necessary for copyright violation to occur. It will be interesting to see what our own Supremes have to say as the American DeCSS cases make it to that appellate level. Sadly, the 2600 case will not be one of them.
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