Pact Reached to Stop Pirating Of Digital TV Over the Internet

bear bear at
Mon May 13 13:16:10 EDT 2002

On Mon, 13 May 2002, Seth David Schoen wrote:

>It's not a watermark.  It's a single bit.  All the technical people
>involved in the process know that it isn't a watermark.  Perhaps these
>reporters are just using "watermark" because they're used to
>applications of watermarking along these lines, or perhaps someone
>used watermarking as a metaphor.  But there's no watermark here, just
>a "redistribution control" bit.
>This proposal is a government mandate to ban digital TV receivers
>unless they are "robust" (non-user-serviceable) and provide only
>"Approved Outputs" and "Approved Recording Methods" for broadcasts in
>which that bit is present.

The proposed system is of course broken.  It's defeasible in
software on any general-purpose computer for as long as general-
purpose computers are legal, as has been proven already.

But you know, I really don't give much of a crap about commercial
content anymore.  Will this system get in my way if I try to
make and distribute (and play and copy on standard hardware) a
nice digital-video, digital-audio recording of a family wedding,
or an original computer-generated movie, or a demo video for my
buddy's band?  'Cause really, that's the problem as far as I'm
concerned; if the system prevents people from making and
distributing our *own* content with compatible hardware, then
it has to be destroyed.


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