3 Count: Pirate Retirement

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1: Pirate Bay Spokesman Peter Sunde Resigns

First off today, Pirate Bay spokesman and one of the four men convicted at The Pirate Bay trial in Sweden earlier this year, Peter Sunde, has announced his retirement from the site. He said that, “I want to build something new and I want to focus my energy in a different direction. I have projects waiting to be finished, a book is waiting to be finalized and many more books are waiting to be read,” as part of his announcement.

Sunde has been perhaps the most famous name associated with The Pirate Bay, has often gone under the name “Brokep” in his postings.

There is no word on who, if anyone, is scheduled to replace him. However, Global Gaming Factory, a Swedish software development company, is still slated to buy the site by the end of the month, though that deal is, according to recent reports, endangered due to lack of financing.

2: DVD-Ripping Appeal Intersects Real’s Ruling

Next up today, in an interesting “chicken and egg” problem for the legal system, two cases involving DVD ripping are set to collide. In 2007, the DVD-CCA, the organization responsibel for the licensing of the DVD CSS encryption technology sued Kaleidescape, the makers of a server that could rip DVDs to a hard drive and play them back. A lower court ruled that Kaleidescape could sell the technology but an appeal was filed and is due any day.

However, in 2008, Real was sued by Hollywood studios, for the creation of a similar product, RealDVD, that would work as software installed on your computer. Though the two cases are different in many ways, the Kaleidescape being a case in the California courts over a contract dispute and the RealDVD one being a copyright lawsuit in Federal court, they hinge on largely the same thing, does the DVD-CCA license allow ripping for the purpose of making a copy to a hard drive?

A ruling in the Kaleidescape is expected any day now and could drastically affect the RealDVD case, likewise, a finding in the RealDVD case against Real could come back to haunt the ongoing Kaleidescape, likely in an appeal to the Supreme Court of California.

it’s a tangled mess to say the least, but an article well worth reading.

3: Cal State Student Faces 10 Year Prison Term for Playing with Video Games

Finally today, Lloyd Crippen, a student at Cal State, has been arrested and faces up to 10 years of jail time for modifying video game consoles, including PS3s, Wiis and Xbox360s to circumvent the copyright protection built in to the systems, allowing them to play pirated games.

Modifying consoles in this manner, is a violation of the Digitial Millennium Copyright Act anti-circumvention provisions. However, it is unlikely he’ll face the full ten year term.

Modifying consoles, or modding, is a fairly common practice in some circles to allow systems to play out of region games, which also would be a violation. However, it appears that Crippen’s efforts were targeted at circumventing copy protection, not region encoding.

Crippen is expected to make his first appearance in court on Monday.


That’s it for the three count today, we’ll be back tomorrow with three more copyright links. If you have a link that you want to suggest a link for the column or have any proposals to make it better. Feel free to leave a comment or send me an email. I hope to hear from you.

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