Sea of Noise

Fri, 23 Jul 2004

The DMCA: Delighting Monopolists Since 1998

The EFF has compiled an excellent summary of the ways the DMCA is being used to stifle competition.

Since they were enacted in 1998, the "anti-circumvention" provisions of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act . . . have not been used as Congress envisioned. Congress meant to stop copyright pirates from defeating anti-piracy protections added to copyrighted works, and to ban "black box" devices intended for that purpose.
In practice, the anti-circumvention provisions have been used to stifle a wide array of legitimate activities, rather than to stop copyright piracy. As a result, the DMCA has developed into a serious threat to several important public policy priorities . . .

One may well wonder whether this consequence was truly "unintended", but either way the EFF's summary makes an excellent case.

Corante also links to several more examples of anti-competitive behavior due to the DMCA.

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