Don Marti

Sun 17 Apr 2005 08:33:51 PM PDT


If you ever doubted the chilling effects of the DMCA, check out Steve Ciarcia's June 2004 column in the print Circuit Cellar.

He tells potential authors that he'll refuse to consider TiVo-related article proposals that cover theft of service or "video extraction". Now, I wouldn't run a theft of service article either. But "video extraction" may or may not be fair use. Circuit Cellar is doing readers a disservice with sweeping self-censorship of what might be an interesting idea with legal, useful applications.

Can you cut and paste quotes from the captions of the TV news to rebut on your blog? Don't bother Steve Ciarcia!

I'm not going to run an article just because it gets around some DRM. I recently rejected a proposal on how to copy an entire DRM-infected work with one click. Not because there aren't legit fair use or personal use reasons to do it, but because it's something that there are other ways to do, and it isn't really a technique that would inspire people to build on it and do more useful things.

But I kicked the proposal back to the author and asked for a new version on how to cut and paste a fair-use excerpt of the work -- for example, for a review on a web site.

Say what you want about whether code is speech. A printed magazine is not a "device". Useful projects should get in. If there's a good idea in your favorite magazine that you can't build because of a bad law, save the magazine and get the law changed.

Here's the LJ author page in case you've written that TV news blog thing (which would be cool, actually), or have perpetrated some other thought crime.