Feeds

CD copying OK, DRM circumvention not OK

Copyright reform unveiled

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

Circumventing DRM to make copies for personal use will remain illegal for consumers, under copyright reform proposals floated by the UK government today.

Lord Triesman, the Parliamentary Undersecretary for Intellectual Property And Quality (to give him his current title), introduced a touchy-feely 90-page consultation paper that's so touchy and so feely, there are far more questions than answers.

But that's understandable, given that this is only the first of two consultation exercises slated for 2008. A second consultation will hone the details before legislation is introduced: the timetable envisages this passing in mid-2009.

(These things take time: eight years elapsed after the mass adoption of the VCR before research libraries and other academic institions were allowed to record TV programs legitimately.)

The government proposes relaxing copyright enforcement for research and education purposes, to enable distance learning and whiteboard tuition. A related proposal will allow libraries to make a copy for archive purposes where the copyright holder can't be found.

The government also proposes creating an exemption for the purposes of "caricature, parody or pastiche".

This simply puts case law as it stands today onto the statute book. Following the Williamson vs Pearson case of 1987, a parody is regarded as infringing if it is substantially derived from the original. The proposed change suggests a parody will not be regarded as infringing if "it is not substantial", either. So you won't be able to take Stairway To Heaven, add the sound of a raspberry to the end, and claim it's your own work, and avoid paying publishing royalties to Messrs P&P.

Shift my format

Copyright law should also recognise that consumers can legitimately make copies of copyright material they've already bought, the government proposes.

Speaking at the launch today, Lord Triesman said it made no sense to prevent someone making a playlist for use in the car from material they had legitimately purchased.The draft floated today does require that consumers should retain the original media.

Lord Triesman at the Copyright consultation launch

Lord Triesman today

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
Israeli spies rebel over mass-snooping on innocent Palestinians
'Disciplinary treatment will be sharp and clear' vow spy-chiefs
Apple CEO Tim Cook: TV is TERRIBLE and stuck in the 1970s
The iKing thinks telly is far too fiddly and ugly – basically, iTunes
Huawei ditches new Windows Phone mobe plans, blames poor sales
Giganto mobe firm slams door shut on Microsoft. OH DEAR
Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water
Founder blames 'ruthless network partners' for implosion
Found inside ISIS terror chap's laptop: CELINE DION tunes
REPORT: Stash of terrorist material found in Syria Dell box
Show us your Five-Eyes SECRETS says Privacy International
Refusal to disclose GCHQ canteen menus and prices triggers Euro Human Rights Court action
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.