Federal Judge Rules DRM Violations Allowed for Fair Use

July 26, 2010, By Radimir Bobev

It’s not often that we get rulings like this one from the federal government, considering their stance towards fair use in general – but when we do, it’s certainly great. According to a judge of the 5th Circuit Appeals Court, circumventing DRM systems for purposes that aren’t related to copyright infringement is completely legal, even though there have been more than a few legal precedents pointing at the opposite so far.

The ruling, made by Judge Emilio Garza, goes quite heavily against the Digital Millenium Copyright Act, which was set up in 1998 and made it illegal to break the DRM on software owned by users for whatever purposes. According to Garza, if the user owns the software legally and is simply circumventing DRM as a way of accessing functions of the software they’d been otherwise prevented from, it’s fine.

This includes, for example, copying a DVD (which involves bypassing a protection), even if your only intention is to save it on a computer for later viewing – this is now allowed!

© 2008-2012 DeviceMag.com - All rights reserved | Privacy Policy