Circumventing Competition: The Perverse Consequences of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act — We knew this all along, didn’t we? Here is a report worth reading.

Why won’t iTunes play on Rio MP3 players? Why are viewers forced to sit through previews on some DVDs when they could have fast-forwarded through them on video? Why is it impossible to cut and paste text on Adobe eBook? In a just released study for the Cato Institute, Tim Lee, a policy analyst at the Show-Me Institute, answers these questions and more.

The problem at the root of all of these annoyances, writes Lee in “Circumventing Competition: The Perverse Consequences of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act,” is Congressional interference in the market for digital rights management technologies.

  1. Chris says:

    And then, those of us who try to exercise our fair use rights are branded as criminals for circumventing the often ineffective “protections.”

  2. jasontheodd says:

    Every time this gets in the news is another chance for Americans to ignore this very important issue. Unfortunately nobody will care until it gets much worse.

  3. gquaglia says:

    I must again remind everyone that this is a Clinton administration law. I guess you can’t blame Bush for everything.

    Thank You Bill!

  4. moss says:

    Thanks for the clarification, gc. I hadn’t realized the Republikans who voted it in — weren’t lapping at the same trough as the Democrats who voted it in. Which of the Tweedledeedum parties controlled Congress, then?

    And does it even matter? The Abramoffs of the world will pay off both. It’s just that the most recent crew has turned an infection into an art form.

  5. Alex says:

    What is interesting about this report is that it comes from the Cato institute, a conservative think tank. These are not wild, wooly haired liberals whining about the DMCA. I don’t expect anyone who matters will pay attention to them either but it helps to have more people take a stand against the DMCA. Send a copy of this article to your favorite Senator.

  6. John Wofford says:

    I ain’t exactly figured out why is so much hell being raised over something that bottom line, kids, ain’t nothing but entertainment. The French want Apple to open up their standards so everybody can use their gadget to play whatever, the big studios want it fixed so that nobody can experience anything for free, and why do people keep spending ridiculous amounts of money on this stuff when all it would take is a six month boycott to straighten the whole mess out. There is too much free good stuff out there for anyone to spend money on the over priced content lining store shelves these days.

  7. Greg V. says:

    The DMCA passed 99-0 with one abstention. No party has the high road on this one.

    Though I’m a liberal, I’m more than happy to have an influential conservative organization on my side on this one. CATO carries weight in conservative circles as one of their big think tanks, along with Heritage. Will this make a difference? Who knows, they’re certainly not all powerful, and have been ignored before. But it’s nice when someone thinks they’re protecting business to have one of their big organizations to point to and reframe it as government interfering in the market.

    I’m even refraining from throwing a bit of snark out there (I certainly have it) because I’m just happy to have them on our side. This is how minds get changed over time, when the organizations they trust start building a case for it. It’s not earth shattering, it won’t do anything on its own, but it’s still a notable step in the right direction.

  8. 2xbob says:

    Its a pain when I cant play legal songs on my computer running a linux without being made a criminal. Stupid wma. Stupid polititions. Bah to them all.


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