Murray Williams lives and works in Northwest Arkansas. He tries to keep his blog up-to-date, but the pressures of life squeeze in and sometimes he just doesn't have the time. You can check out his full site at


Wake Up People - DMCA Gets Worse

Right under our noses, we are losing more and more rights. People all over the tech universe have been crying foul over and over again about the Digital Millennium Copyright act (DMCA) with little to no effect.

The problem is, most of the world isn't technologically adept enough to see that rights that they will want tomorrow are being stripped away today. It wasn't that long ago that being able to make a copy of a piece of music that you have purchased was legal. Today, it is still legal to make a copy of your music, but the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) made a sneaky end-around your right to copy. The end-around is called the DMCA.

The sneaky part is the DMCA has a seemingly inocuous clause making it illegal to disable or tamper with encryption. On paper that sounds pretty good until you look a little deeper and what it means to you.

Let's say you purchased a new CD by your favorite band. Then, let's say you own an iPod or some other MP3 portable music device. And finally, just for laughs, let's say you had the audacity to want to listen to your new music on your portable device. Doesn't exactly sound like terrorist activity does it?

Well, on some new CDs, recording companies have started to encrypt music CDs in hopes of thwarting piracy. I can't hardly blame them for wanting to protect their property...but wait. In order for you to put your new (paid for) music on your player, you are now forced to get around the encryption on the disc which makes you a criminal.

Something is broken here, and very few are crying foul because there aren't enough of us at the party! By the time the average 52 year old man is carrying around an iPod, he will have long since lost the ability to use it in a logical way.

The DMCA is bad, and many people have been trying to let the world know about its inadequacies. Today, I read this article from CNET talking about a new piece of legislation that would not only keep the broken DMCA intact, but would go further to strip law-abiding citizens of their rights.

Below is an exerpt from the article.
The 24-page bill is a far-reaching medley of different proposals cobbled together. One would, for instance, create a new federal crime of just trying to commit copyright infringement. Such willful attempts at piracy, even if they fail, could be punished by up to 10 years in prison.
ARE YOU SERIOUS?!? Things are getting way, way out of whack and it is time that we do something about it. I don't want to steal music. I do want to buy a CD and copy it to MY iPod. It would be nice to listen to it somewhere other than SING SING!


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think you have the wrong link in the "read this article at CNET".

2:07 AM

Blogger Nelson said...

I'm on board 199%! I buy a lot of music through iTunes. HOwever, apparently, I can only listen to the music I purchased on my computer or iPod. I tried burning a CD so I could listen to them in my car on a road trip...and they won't play. I'm gonna give a big BS on that! That's like saying, "we know you OWN this, but you really don't because we control how you use it even after you own it". BS!!!! If the RIAA wants to see something illegal and terroristic, they should keep this up. Before long, a large number of disgrunted music owners are going to bomb their offices.

9:09 AM

Blogger Murray Williams said...

Link is fixed

5:49 PM


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