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UK Patent Office's preparations for EUCD are online

Written by Petteri Pyyny (Google+) @ 10 Aug 2002 5:16 User comments (6)

Very few, unfortunately, seem to understand that DVD rippers and other neat toys like that are going to disappear from European Union by end of this year. Law -- or actually a directive -- called EUCD was passed by EU Council in 2001 and it can't be changed anymore and now member states are required to implement it into their own legislations.
Anyway, now UK Patent Office's consulation papers have been released online. Papers indicate what needs to be changed in current UK law to comply with EUCD. As said, UK doesn't really have much option to choose whether or not to pass these laws, so it is just matter of details in other EU countries as well.

Some chilling stuff to read, I save your time and copy-paste one nasty piece:

296ZB. (1) A person commits an offence if he—
(a) makes for sale or hire, or
(b) imports otherwise than for his private and domestic use, or
(c) in the course of a business—
  (i) sells or lets for hire, or
  (ii) offers or exposes for sale or hire, or
  (iii) advertises for sale or hire, or
  (iv) possesses, or
  (v) distributes, or
(d) distributes otherwise than in the course of a business to such an extent as to affect prejudicially the copyright owner

any device, product or component which is primarily designed, produced, or adapted for the purpose of enabling or facilitating the circumvention of effective technological measures.

So, to put it simply, you're violating the law if you let other people to download DVD rippers. Or some tools that allow copying copy-protected audio CDs. Or WMAs. etc... And same applies to sites that operate within EU -- distributing such tools is a criminal offence after 1st of January, 2003. Good hosting providers in Far East, anyone?-)

Source: UK Patent Office

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6 user comments

110.8.2002 7:10

Does that mean that this site has its days counted? I'd hate to see it go... if so, please be sure to set up a mirror somewhere in China or Japan so that those of us who use it on a regular basis can still benefit from its content...

210.8.2002 9:02

So is owning Nero 5.5 going to be illegal too? It copies cds that claim to be copy protected.

310.8.2002 12:43

At the moment the plan is to continue running the site as usual, but to remove all applications that actually crack the CSS code found on DVDs -- and if you browse through the site, there actually aren't many of those left. Guides wont be illegal -- they just give you instructions, not tools :-) So, quickly going through our most popular tools and only SmartRipper, DVD Decrypter, Streambox VCR and SVCD.cfm" class="forum_link" target="_blank">DVD2SVCD (unless the developer doesn't remove the internal ripping code from the package) will be removed by 31st of December, 2002. But yeah, one option would be to set up an off-shore company somewhere where legal issues aren't that troublesome as in western countries.

Petteri Pyyny (pyyny@twitter)

411.8.2002 3:05

In my country the DVD copying software has been illegal for a long time, but it is still available.... Maybe they can screw some legit people over, but laws like this seldom affect the individual. Unless they plan on going door to door to enforce this new law, they may find it impossible to enforce.

511.8.2002 3:21

JCGreen: True. But it hits directly to sites like ours, who distribute openly DVD rippers and other tools that allow backupping of the material that you already own. It actually doesn't criminalize possession of DVD rippers and similiar tools if you're an individual and don't distribute those. But getting your hands into such tools after this law gets much harder since I assume all major DVD ripping sites will remove the tools to avoid problems.

Petteri Pyyny (pyyny@twitter)

611.8.2002 9:33

One word: FUCK! Sorry dRD, I had too. And will they remove the "company taxes" that compensate for legitimate copying? No! Imagine how much CD-R/RW, DVD-R/RW, VHS etc. prices would go down if they took away those. A few euros atleast.

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