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Intel Threatens DMCA Using HDCP Crack 373

mikesd81 writes "Intel is apparently threatening to use the DMCA against anyone using the HDCP crack under the DMCA's anti-circumvention clause. 'There are laws to protect both the intellectual property involved as well as the content that is created and owned by the content providers,' said Tom Waldrop, a spokesman for the company, which developed HDCP. 'Should a circumvention device be created using this information, we and others would avail ourselves, as appropriate, of those remedies.'"
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Intel Threatens DMCA Using HDCP Crack

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  • Bring it on (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday September 20, 2010 @10:18AM (#33635286)

    You know hackers will win anyway.

  • Barn Doors (Score:5, Insightful)

    by tsalmark ( 1265778 ) on Monday September 20, 2010 @10:20AM (#33635308) Homepage
    After the horse has left the barn it's too late to close the door.
  • by anUnhandledException ( 1900222 ) <> on Monday September 20, 2010 @10:20AM (#33635312)

    With DMCA hell I could protect something with 2 bit encryption. There is only two keys. 1 and 0. Pretty easy to crack right? It doesn't really matter. No matter how easy to crack doing so opens you up to the DMCA.

    If they win expect more "paper tiger" encryption and content protection systems. The teeth isn't the weak flawed crypto. The teeth is in the lawsuit potential.

  • Oh Yea? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by __aavqan3009 ( 1714764 ) on Monday September 20, 2010 @10:21AM (#33635316)
    Maybe I won`t use Intel....
  • by CowboyBob500 ( 580695 ) on Monday September 20, 2010 @10:21AM (#33635324) Homepage
    So good luck with that Intel...
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday September 20, 2010 @10:23AM (#33635350)

    ... not if ACTA gets signed.

  • Re:Prediction. (Score:2, Insightful)

    by xtracto ( 837672 ) on Monday September 20, 2010 @10:26AM (#33635412) Journal

    My prediction:

    Someone will leak the C code for a HDCP decryptor into pastebin (ala DeCSS) and everybody will be happy (except for intel and the copy providers).

    Translating Intel press release: "So hmm yea, we really screwed when thinking that 40 keys would be enough for everybody, now that the world have seen how good a snake-oil we sold to the MMPAA guys, we will start litigation with all the world so that the MAFIAA does not sue our assess of the planet..."

  • by somersault ( 912633 ) on Monday September 20, 2010 @10:31AM (#33635468) Homepage Journal

    I thought that was what copyright law was for? This is just about trying to stop people copying their stuff, without understanding how stupid and virtually impossible that is.

  • Re:DMCA Lutero (Score:5, Insightful)

    by wonkavader ( 605434 ) on Monday September 20, 2010 @10:34AM (#33635532)

    Well, no. But the legal proceedings against him (or more rightly, customers using his work-around) were costly: at least 3 million people dead.

    Let's hope Intel shows a little more restraint than that.

  • Re:I don't see how (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday September 20, 2010 @10:35AM (#33635548)

    Eh depends how hot the stripper is. And what she's willing to do.

  • by characterZer0 ( 138196 ) on Monday September 20, 2010 @10:39AM (#33635622)

    Anything that is broken is ineffective, no?

  • Re:Barn Doors (Score:5, Insightful)

    by airfoobar ( 1853132 ) on Monday September 20, 2010 @10:41AM (#33635648)
    Is this a car metaphor but with horses which I see before me? The real problem is when the barn owner sells the horses, but also trains them to return to his barn as soon as their new owner is asleep.
  • Re:DMCA Lutero (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Vectormatic ( 1759674 ) on Monday September 20, 2010 @10:42AM (#33635662)

    if you are talking about luther, he started a major offshoot of the christian faith, sending wars across europe destroying many catholic churches and killing thousands (even very recently in north ireland)

    sounds like a plan to me, burning record stores, MPAA/RIAA executives crusified or burned at the stake.. where do i sign up?

  • Re:Okay (Score:3, Insightful)

    by omnichad ( 1198475 ) on Monday September 20, 2010 @10:46AM (#33635738) Homepage

    The DMCA itself has an interoperability clause. And there's plenty of people with older DVI monitors who would love to simply use them for viewing of legally purchased HD movies. But we all know that Intel will file suits and win anyway.

  • Re:Well done Intel (Score:3, Insightful)

    by hedwards ( 940851 ) on Monday September 20, 2010 @10:50AM (#33635832)
    CSS wasn't DRM, CSS was about shaking down hardware and software providers for a licensing fee. It didn't do a damned thing about copy protection, just ensured that the pirated media was played using a licensed player. Well, up until somebody cracked it.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday September 20, 2010 @11:07AM (#33636092)
    So the hackers are in a race to break it before the spies steal it? If the spies win, is it illegal forever?
  • by TheGratefulNet ( 143330 ) on Monday September 20, 2010 @11:08AM (#33636098)

    bd is breakable ( and so who cares about BD anymore.

    but for the mythtv guys who want to timeshift cable (non-clear qam) or sat-tv, you really only have hdmi now. the s-video is a joke and they won't give you component since its analog and is a 'hole' (lol).

    if the hdmi sniffers/importers start hitting the shelves, that would enable us mythtv guys to FINALLY consider coming back to pay-tv again.

    this could be a GOOD thing for the content guys. right? RIGHT??

    of course they'll never see it that way. I currently don't have a pay-tv sub and have let mine lapse for a few years, now. my myth-tv setup only picks up OTA and what is tunable by my hdhomerun box. if, though, it was possible to easily import the hdmi/dvi streams from the cable boxes, that would actually put the pay-tv back into consideration again.

    if I can't record it to MY system, I don't want it. but let me timeshift my way and I can open my wallet.

    intel and the rest of the industry: hear me, please. I'm a revenue stream that you refuse to tap because of your silliness.

  • by Sycraft-fu ( 314770 ) on Monday September 20, 2010 @11:13AM (#33636198)

    Remember that the only reason these devices have DRM is because the content producers want it and consumers will tolerate or in most cases not notice it. The electronics industry has no particular stake in this, other than to sell the most devices. They don't care what the devices do so long as people buy them.

    So when HDMI was created, Intel put in copy protection because they knew it would help market the thing. If it was unprotected, the media industry might balk at putting content out on any device that had it. Status quo with old devices would be maintained, electronics industry doesn't make more money. They also knew it would be almost a total non-issue to most consumers. While there were some early adopters that got fucked, or people doing something fairly non-standard, most people aren't even aware of HDCP since more or less all HDMI devices have it. You switch to the new connector and that is it.

    This also works because people are moving to a new format anyhow. They are replacing old NTSC TVs with new ATSC TVs. They want the new electronics for the features, they don't stop anything they already have from working, etc. Content producers are happy, consumers are happy, the electronics industry is happy.

    Well the problem with something new, if you tried to mandate it, is that people wouldn't buy it. You roll out HDCPv2 on new Blu-ray players. They don't work with your HDCPv1 TV. People will not want these players. They'll buy one, it won't work, they'll take it back. Well stores aren't going to be interested in stocking something like that. Because of that, electronics companies won't make something like that. Also because of that, content producers will be forced to support older HDCPv1 devices to make any money.

    You can offer up a completely new format with new restrictions to consumers, but it has to be something they like to bite. As an example of a failure look at DVD-Audio. The idea was to increase the fidelity of audio, but also to get some copyprotection. It features CPPM, which is better than CSS and of course way better than the nothing CDs feature. Problem is that they couldn't move it. Only audiophiles bought the hardware so even though the content industry liked it, they had to keep making CDs, and in fact very few DVD-As were made.

    So a new DRM could potentially come out with a new connector and format, but it has to be something you can convince people they want to buy. Just trying to say "Nope, you need HDCPv2 now," would do nothing. Nobody would buy it, since it would work less well than the HDCPv1 stuff on the market.

  • Re:Bring it on (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Joebert ( 946227 ) on Monday September 20, 2010 @11:17AM (#33636254) Homepage
    What would be the devices "primary" use?
    I find it hard to believe you could just create a device solely for this purpose and not run into some kind of legal trouble whether you're including the key or not. If the device has no other "primary" function, technically you're facilitating whatever crime is being committed.
  • Re:Barn Doors (Score:5, Insightful)

    by AusIV ( 950840 ) on Monday September 20, 2010 @11:18AM (#33636288)
    The thing is, the horse hasn't really left the barn. At this point HDCP isn't really about preventing piracy - there are much better ways to rip most HD content. The value of HDCP to Intel is that it forces anyone who wants to build an HDMI compatible device to license HDCP if their users want to get the full HD experience. Thanks to the DMCA, the leaked master key doesn't mean much on that front. There may be some Chinese manufacturers putting out a few cheaper devices, but anything the average consumer will buy at Best Buy still has to license HDCP from Intel. In this statement, Intel is making it clear that they intend to use the DMCA to enforce licensing requirements against any manufacturers who might think this means they don't have to license HDCP anymore.
  • Re:Barn Doors (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Archangel Michael ( 180766 ) on Monday September 20, 2010 @11:31AM (#33636512) Journal

    Can you license a big number?

  • Interoperability (Score:5, Insightful)

    by aztektum ( 170569 ) on Monday September 20, 2010 @11:31AM (#33636516)

    The DMCA allows for reverse-engineering for interoperability. So, eat a dick Intel.

  • Re:Bring it on (Score:5, Insightful)

    by julesh ( 229690 ) on Monday September 20, 2010 @11:42AM (#33636676)

    All that has to be done is for a company to make a module with a flashable keyspace. Then the end-user can add the master key to the device themselves, and nobody gets in trouble (unless they start sharing the content).

    Nope, sorry, still a device designed to enable breaking "effective" technological measures, whether it requires end-user modification or not.

    No, the *real* answer is to market *two* devices, one of which enables a perfectly legal non-copyright-violating use (i.e. an HDMI->DVI adapter that converts standard monitors to HDCP-enabled ones) and one of which doesn't circumvent the DRM (i.e. a DVI video capture board). Plug one into the other and you have an apparently legal means of capturing encrypted video streams.

    Problem is, I assume HDCP is patented. You won't see such devices being mass marketed because they would necessarily infringe on those patents. So maybe another approach is required: just a device with an HDMI port, an ethernet port, an FPGA and a memory card reader to provide the design for the FPGA. Legitimate use: can be programmed to display stuff on your TV. Memory card distributed with it has a simple photo-viewing application. Alternative memory card you can download from somewhere apparently unconnected to the manufacturer has the HDCP-cracking application.

  • by seeker_1us ( 1203072 ) on Monday September 20, 2010 @11:50AM (#33636844)
    You obviously don't need them. All you have to do it say "it's illegal."
  • Re:Bring it on (Score:3, Insightful)

    by scrib ( 1277042 ) on Monday September 20, 2010 @11:53AM (#33636894)

    "HDMI Noise Filter and Signal Booster."
    You know, for all those people who need gold-plated, name-brand cables for perfectly crisp, clear transmission of digital data. I think "noise filter" would be a perfectly apt description of the secondary function, too!

  • Re:Bring it on (Score:4, Insightful)

    by jgagnon ( 1663075 ) on Monday September 20, 2010 @12:30PM (#33637504)

    That would be a very tough sell considering the number of computers out there with HDMI support that are "programmable". Intel HAD to make this announcement to cover their own legal asses, but I think they understand full well that they've already lost this round of the war. They will still make their money, so they really have nothing to lose. It's on to the next DRM tech!

  • Re:DMCA Lutero (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday September 20, 2010 @01:08PM (#33638114)

    if you are talking about luther, he started a major offshoot of the christian faith, sending wars across europe destroying many catholic churches and killing thousands (even very recently in north ireland)

    That might be the most distorted version of modern European history I've ever heard. Catholic church as innocent victim is a new one.

  • by Nikker ( 749551 ) on Monday September 20, 2010 @02:28PM (#33639466)
    What ever the data rate is supposed to max out at I haven't seen anywhere close to that (I'm looking at you Rogers). I see more compression artifacts then detail, especially on sports broadcasts. The only content that would really use it to its potential would be BluRay media. YMMV
  • Re:Barn Doors (Score:2, Insightful)

    by ejasons ( 205408 ) on Monday September 20, 2010 @03:37PM (#33640586)

    I guess so. All software is simply a really big number. The fact that the number makes fancy GUIs, or let's you watch a movie is what matters in the courts, I think.

    I understand that your post is at least partially tongue-in-cheek...

    With that said, note that the "big number" for software is the output of a conversion (say by a compiler) from a "creative work", which is covered by copyright, while the "big number" for the HDCP master key is simply the random output of a program, and is probably not covered by copyright...

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