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DMCA Exemptions Desired To Hack iPhones, Remix DVDs 188

Posted by timothy
from the what's-on-the-shortlist dept.
An anonymous reader writes "For copyright activists, Christmas comes but once every three years: a chance to ask Santa for a new exemption to the much-hated Digital Millennium Copyright Act's prohibitions against hacking, reverse engineering and evasion of Digital Rights Management (DRM) schemes protecting all kinds of digital works and electronic items. Judging from the list of 20 exemptions requested this year [19 shown], some in the cyber-law community are thinking big. The requests include the right to legally jailbreak iPhones in order to use third party software, university professors wishing to rip clips from DVDs for classroom use, YouTube users wishing to rip DVDs to make video mashups, a request to allow users to hack DRM protecting content from stores that have gone bankrupt or shut down, and a request to allow security researchers to reverse engineer video games with security flaws that put end-users at risk." Reader MistaE provides some more specific links to PDF versions: "Among the exemption proposals is a request from the Harvard Cyberlaw Clinic to allow circumvention of DRM protection when the central authorization server goes down, a request from the EFF to allow circumvention to install third party programs on phones, as well as a request for ripping DVDs for non-commercial purposes. There were also several narrow requests from educational institutions to rip DVDs for classroom practices."
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DMCA Exemptions Desired To Hack iPhones, Remix DVDs

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  • Re:Jailbreaking (Score:3, Informative)

    by Penguinoflight (517245) on Wednesday December 03, 2008 @03:42PM (#25978925) Homepage Journal

    The act of "jailbreaking" an iPhone is not illegal, unless the _owner_ of the device has agreed to some TOS/EULA disallowing such an act. The responsibility falls on the owner of the device, not any individuals or corporations aiding in a modification.

    Using a unlocked phone to circumvent copy protections may be illegal (DMCA), but I don't know of any media where such circumvention would be necessary simply for use on a hacked device. Of course applications may have EULA's or TOS disallowing their use apart from licensing through for example the applications store.

    I believe you are correct; in the few cases involving phone jailbreaking, the case was over the intentional disabling of said phones by a network. Intentionally disabling a device for use on other networks is anti-competitive behavior, which is illegal in the US.

  • Re:Jailbreaking (Score:3, Informative)

    by lordkuri (514498) on Wednesday December 03, 2008 @03:58PM (#25979167)

    The act of "jailbreaking" an iPhone is not illegal, unless the _owner_ of the device has agreed to some TOS/EULA disallowing such an act.

    No, No, NO! Why do people continue to perpetuate this?

    Violating a company's EULA is not illegal. Period. Full stop.

    illegal
    -adjective
    1. forbidden by law or statute.
    2. contrary to or forbidden by official rules, regulations, etc.
    -noun
    3. Informal. illegal alien.

    Tell me which law or statue I'm violating by doing something that isn't allowed by an EULA.

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