The EFF has written a long but thought-provoking article about the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), which is regarded as one of the major forces behind the gradual erosion of privacy– particularly in the computer arena.
Using wide-ranging examples to demonstrate the damage incurred by the DMCA, the EFF points out how it’s illegal to do things like:
* Watch a DVD on your computer.
* Use a “universal” remote control or garage-door opener.
* Convert a copy-protected CD to MP3’s for your own use.
* Publish truthful information regarding computer security issues.
* Perform research into reverse-engineering security protocols.
* Customize your Sony Aibos robotic dog toy.
There are many more examples, and all of them show how the DMCA is being used for things far beyond what Congress originally intended when they passed the law in 1998.
As big corporations with expensive lawyers continue to take laws like the DMCA and pervert them for their own use and profit, the consumers and American public in general continue to suffer as a result.