[mythtv-users] (was) MythTV vs Media Center

Bob Sully rcs at malibyte.net
Sun Jan 21 18:32:26 UTC 2007

Brian Wood wrote:
> On Jan 21, 2007, at 9:41 AM, Kevin Hulse wrote:
>> 	That may be. However, it is still a very useful anecdote.
>> One of the oft repeated mantras from the weenies that troll in Linux
>> groups is how Linux doesn't come with any suitable codecs and you
>> have to cobble things together yourself installing things like DVD
>> playback support.
> Actually it's more than just the codecs. In the USA it is a technical
> violation of the DMCA to play back a CSS-protected DVD on an
> unlicensed system.
> So I can have a DVD that I paid for, and a computer that I paid for,
> and it is technically illegal for me to watch that DVD on my Linux OS
> on that computer.

This is a result of the fact that Microsoft is in bed with the media
companies.  I am not an attorney, but I do recall the "fair use" provision
 which states, in effect, that you are free to use content that you have
paid for in any way which does not infringe upon the rights of the
copyright holder (back in the day that meant making backup copies of your
CDs (or an extra one for your car) as long as you didn't sell them or give
them away).  The minions behind the DMCA seem to have forgotten about that

> Then there is the MPEG tax (which is what you probably mean by
> "codecs"), which was paid when you bought your DVD drive, or, more
> properly, the software that came with it. Unless you bought an OEM
> drive, or a used one, or one from offshore...
> I really do try and do what I can to obey the law, but even attorneys
> working full time in the field can't agree on what the law really
> means, and even their "learned opinions" are just that, opinions,
> until and unless tested in court.


> I figure that as long as I am not doing anything that costs the
> copyright-holders a sale or rental I am on the moral high ground, if
> not the legal such :-)

> When you enact laws that the average citizen can't comprehend, and
> even lawyers working in the field can't agree on the meaning of, you
> have ceased to be a "democracy" (or representational republic).

Again, agreed.

> But don't worry, everything will be fine as soon as the rest of the world
> is "just like us". :-)

God forbid.  I would hope the rest of the world will be spared from the
nonsense we've had to deal with here in regard to software and media
copyright law.

> While this might seem off-topic it really isn't. This is, after all,
> the MythTV User's list, and I would bet that, at least in the USA,
> every MythTV user is in technical violation of federal law in at
> least some respect, and most of them don't even realize it.

<soapbox mode>

Oh, well.  So what.  I paid for that DVD, I'm paying for my cable TV
service.  The fact that the cable company encrypts content on the cable
feed that I pay for because they want to force me to rent their crappy DVR
is galling.

There was the notion of nonviolent civil disobedience back in the '60s and
early '70s which helped bring about astounding change.  Change doesn't
happen without questioning laws which are felt to be unjust.

</soapbox mode>

Bob Sully - Simi Valley, California, USA

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