mabfan (Michael A. Burstein) (mabfan) wrote,
mabfan (Michael A. Burstein)

Family Entertainment Act, Revisited

Back in April of 2005, I mentioned the passage of the Family Entertainment and Copyright Act and then gave my own opinion on the law.

To remind everyone, the Act created an exemption in copyright law that allowed companies to create filtering software for movies on DVD. So if you bought or rented a film that had content the company considered objectionable, such as foul language, excessive violence, or nudity, the software would cause those section to be skipped when you played the DVD.

At the time, we had a lot of good, respectful debate on whether or not this was a good idea, and I pointed out why I myself felt uncomfortable with the concept.

Well, I'm not the only one uncomfortable with the idea of companies "sanitizing" films.. So is Judge Richard P. Matsch. Last Thursday, in Denver, Colorado, he ruled that selling an edited version of a film is an "illegitimate business." However, his ruling seems to be aimed solely at companies that sell an actual new version of the film, rather than those that create software to used with a licensed copy. For example, ClearPlay, which creates software filters, issued this press release, which reminds people that what their company does is protected by the Act. The companies named in the lawsuit, such as CleanFilms and CleanFlicks, would buy a new copy of the movie for each edited one they sold, a way to avoid accusations of piracy.

I'm fascinated to see what happens next...

Copyright © Michael Burstein
Tags: copyright, politics

  • Hello

    Staying off of Facebook and Twitter for a few days, or at least trying to. Don't suppose anyone is still here?

  • Carrie Fisher (1956-2016)

    The summer of 1989 was a strange one for me. I had spent a little less than half the summer hanging around my childhood home in New York City and…

  • Joel David Burstein (December 11, 1929 - November 2, 1990)

    Twenty-six years ago today, my father died. It feels odd acknowledging this anniversary today, because time has worn away at the emotional pain and…

  • Post a new comment


    Comments allowed for friends only

    Anonymous comments are disabled in this journal

    default userpic

    Your reply will be screened

    Your IP address will be recorded