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Finland bans DRM fiddling in all its forms

Even 'organised discussions' thereof

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The Finnish government voted yesterday to make it illegal to copy media, even for personal use, if you have to subvert copy protection to do so. The legislation was passed by 121 votes to 34. Forty-four MPs were absent.

The updated copyright protection laws have been criticised for ignoring consumers' rights, and the bill itself has been branded confusing and badly worded.

Until now, Finland had allowed copying for personal use, and had a blank media levy in place to compensate authors.

But under the new laws, not only will copying for personal use become illegal, so will possessing, distributing or advertising tools that break copy protection. P2PNet points out that the law prohibits even "organised discussion" of such things.

The Finnish president does have the right to veto the new legislation, but this right is very rarely exercised.

According to Finnish News Agency STT, the government appended a note to the legislation asking content producing industries to voluntarily agree not to prosecute individuals for making a few copies for their own use.

Based on the track record of these same industries, we at El Reg are sure that Finns wanting to transfer to a few tracks from a newly purchased (copy protected) CD over to their MP3 players will be absolutely fine. ®

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