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[FYI]US Law makes breaking technological safeguards illegal
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- Subject: [FYI]US Law makes breaking technological safeguards illegal
- From: Nathalie Merle <firstname.lastname@example.org>
- Date: Mon, 30 Oct 2000 02:43:37 -0800 (PST)
- Comment: This message comes from the debate mailing list.
- Sender: email@example.com
In a decision giving copyright holders greater
control over the way people use books,
movies and music that are distributed in digital
form, the United States Copyright Office on
Friday endorsed a new federal law making it
illegal to break the technological safeguards
for such works.
The statute goes into effect immediately.
The ruling was a defeat for several
constituencies — including universities,
libraries and computer programmers — that
had argued that the law should preserve
traditional rights to archive and lend out
copyrighted material or to use so-called
reverse-engineering to understand how a piece
of technology works.
The ruling, issued by the Library of Congress, which
copyright office, will be in effect for three years, during
copyright office will continue to examine its effect.
In a statement, the Library of Congress said that it
intended to ask
Congress to reconsider that time frame, noting the
"potential damage to
scholarship may well ensue in the course of a three-year
Under the law, civil statutory damages for gaining access to
a piece of
copyrighted material secured by computer code range from
$2,500. Criminal penalties includes fines of as much as $1
million or 10
years in jail for repeat offenses.
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