[linux-elitists] Testify at NTIA hearings about DMCA!

kmself@ix.netcom.com kmself@ix.netcom.com
Sun Nov 26 14:40:40 PST 2000

on Thu, Nov 23, 2000 at 06:40:48PM +0000, Paul J Collins (sneakums@sto-kerrig.org) wrote:
> >>>>> "Jonathan" == Jonathan Corbet <corbet-elite@lwn.net> writes:
>     >> Section 117 of the Copyright Act, 17 U.S.C. 117, permits the
>     >> owner of a copy of a computer program to make a copy or
>     >> adaptation of the program for archival purposes or as an
>     >> essential step in the utilization of the program in conjunction
>     >> with a machine.
>     Jonathan> Interesting bit of silliness that just popped into my
>     Jonathan> mind: who's to say that a film on DVD isn't a program?
> Me, for a start.  They're not.

Well, a bit more detail might be helpful.  17 USC 101 gives:

    A ''computer program'' is a set of statements or instructions to be
    used directly or indirectly in a computer in order to bring about a
    certain result. 

I don't know what the legal gloss on this definition is, but it strikes
me that the argument to make would be to travel from the direct encoding
of the DVD to low-level machine instruction code on a CPU.  DVD-as-data
would tend not to map to such instructions.  Ergo:  it's data.

...though I'll admit the line can become ambiguous.

Karsten M. Self <kmself@ix.netcom.com>     http://www.netcom.com/~kmself
 Evangelist, Zelerate, Inc.                      http://www.zelerate.org
  What part of "Gestalt" don't you understand?      There is no K5 cabal
   http://gestalt-system.sourceforge.net/        http://www.kuro5hin.org
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