BBC News is reporting that the AACS copy protection body is going to go after bloggers who posted the HD-DVD processing key.
"Some people clearly think it's a First Amendment issue. There is no intent from us to interfere with people's right to discuss copy protection. We respect free speech.
"They can discuss the pros and cons. We know some people are critical of the technology.
"But a line is crossed when we start seeing keys being distributed and tools for circumvention. You step outside of the realm of protected free speech then."
Michael Ayers, AACS
This is so much bullshit. I can't believe that they are going to use the DMCA to stop people from publishing a number. Some people think it's a First Amendment issue? You're damn right it is! The DMCA is the most bullshit, unconstitutional law there is. I seriously can't believe that it has come to this; where a body can tell you what not to say. I have every right; a right given to me by the constitution; to say what I please. The First Amendment says that Congress shall make no law restricting my freedom of speech. I know it's not up to me to interpret the law. We have the Supreme Court Justices for that. However, I feel that prosecuting people for publishing this key sets a dangerous precedent.
This is not about piracy. This is about control. DRM is not going to stop large-scale piracy. What it does is annoy proper customers. If I buy a disc, I can do whatever I want. I can make how many ever copies I want, and play it on whatever hardware I want. I can do anything short of making copies to sell. It's mine and I paid for it.
From the article: "The leak of the key meant that some HD-DVD titles could have their copy protection removed and then could be watched on two different software players. The leak of the key did not affect hardware players, he said."
That's what they don't want. They don't want you playing it on whatever you choose.
In some ways, this might be a good thing. Perhaps it will make the public more aware about the travesties perpetrated by these DRM groups in the name of "protecting intellectual property". Perhaps it will make them more aware of the unconstitutionality of the DMCA. I seriously wonder how they are going to go after 700,000 people. Good luck. The more they try to silence us, the more we are going to revolt.
I remember when the DeCSS issue first surfaced. People were being sued for publishing the decryption algorithm. There were different forms of displaying the algorithm. Like, could you be sued for wearing a T-Shirt with the DeCSS code? In a similar vein, people are already finding different ways to represent the HD-DVD Processing Key (shirts, mugs, songs, videos). One of these is the Free Speech Flag (displayed below). It uses the hexadecimal codes from the processing key as hexadecimal color codes. Can we be sued for displaying that? I don't know. I hope all of this results in a serious re-evaluation of DRM and the DMCA.
Free Speech Flag