On the application of a coalition of Hollywood movie studios, the District Court for the Northern District of California has issued an injunction prohibiting 321 Studios (321) from selling versions of its DVD duplication software. The Court found that 321′s “DVD Copy Plus” and “DVD X Copy” violated §1201(a)(2) and §1202(b)(1) of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), given that each of the above programs was primarily designed, produced, and marketed to the public to circumvent embedded DVD copy protection. Both programs came equipped with an unlicensed de-scrambling component to allow users to decrypt the CSS (Contents Scrambling System) encoding and make a copy of the decrypted DVD. In making its findings, the Court ruled that the DMCA does not infringe fair use or constitutional rights of users and does not otherwise exceed the scope of Congressional powers.
Despite the favourable decision, the victory may be a hollow one for the movie studios. As the Court indicated, the CSS decryption keys and algorithm to decode DVDs are widely available on the Internet.
For a copy of the decision (321 Studios v Metro Goldwyn Mayer Studios et al), see:
For more information, see:
Summary by: Colin Adams