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French court bans use of DRM on Warner Music CD

Written by James Delahunty (Google+) @ 29 Jan 2006 18:16 User comments (15)

French court bans use of DRM on Warner Music CD On January 10th, Paris District court ruled against the use of Digital Rights Management (DRM) mechanisms on Warner Music's Testify CD from Phil Collins. Warner Music will have to pay €59.50 in remedies for the plaintiff's damages, and a punitive fine of €5000. The court banned the "use Digital Rights Management systems on the Phil Collins' Testify CD as long as they block users from copying on any media of their choice". The decision was praised by consumer groups.
On group in particular was the famous French Consumer Association UFC-Que Choisir, which has been very active in the fight against digital rights management. While DRM's main priority is to stop music tracks from being shared on the Internet, it also causes problems for consumers. These restrictions often get in the way of users transferring music onto portable devices of their choice.

DRM would be best kept off audio CDs, as the main source of pirated music files on the Internet is semi-professional groups. If an anticipated album leaks online, within a few days it would be so widespread, it would be impossible to stop unauthorised distribution. So does DRM on CDs really have any positive effect for the music industry, or consumers?


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15 user comments

130.1.2006 6:11

Nice one France :)

230.1.2006 14:17

Wow, a country that actually cares about the people! Eat that Warner.

330.1.2006 15:39


431.1.2006 0:49

Now we actually have a reason to call the side-spuds Freedom Fries. At least when it comes to consumer rights, France is putting their money where their mouth is.

So does DRM on CDs really have any positive effect for the music industry, or consumers?
I'm a consumer of music industry products and I can definitely say that I'm positive that placing DRM vermin on my CDs totally hacks me off. DRM sanctions are just a much-too-obvious vehicle by which the consumer is ripped-off, by allowing the music industry to demand a hefty price for their product while at the same time the consumer recieves maybe 10% value in the product, due to the myriad arbitrary restrictions imposed by the music industry at any given time. It's gotten to the point that my DSP plug-ins (DFX7 for example) are disabled when playing back downloaded songs that I have purchased through RealOne or i-tunes. Viva la France!

531.1.2006 4:30

DRM sucks. It shouldn't be on any audio cd or dvd.

631.1.2006 9:22

Regardless, we are always going to find a way around... They can put whatever they want on a cd or dvd... ITS NOT GOING TO STOP ANYONE!!!! HAHAHAHAHA.... ALL it boils down too, for toooooo long the music and film industry have suckered consumers out of money, charging the same price for cds,dvd, movie tickets and etc, regardless the quality or content, Making a fortune for entertainment.... Does it matter??? NO Brittney Spears is still going to feed tonight.. The executives at Warner are still going to have thier $10000 hookers... So what government and companies steal other peoples ideas all the time.. Hell when I was 10 years old, I said hey why cant we have a shoe that has air in the tongue... 2 weeks later the first pair of Reebok Pumps came out.. Do you see me bitching.. NO ... Hell Al Gore Invented the Internet but do you see him profiting.. No and you shouldnt cause he didnt invent it fools... Anyway thanks France for finally showing us that you may chicken out a war but NOONE messes with you entertainment!!!!

731.1.2006 16:08

@jlhfit time to take your medication mate ;)

81.2.2006 13:12

Well hats off too France for havin the common sense to c that DRM is the worst thing invented since the A bomb... Congrats France @domie

time to take your medication mate ;)[/qoute] LOL!!! :)

91.2.2006 13:51

Side spuds!!! ROTFL!!! :)

102.2.2006 13:45

:) Screw Metallica.

112.2.2006 14:14

I got a thought, Why dont they pull all anticopying software, DRM, etc and blah blah. and then reduce prices? they would save moiney by not using DRM and then people are free to do what they will with their property. Basically their point is that were not allowed to copy it, so in essence were renting their property for a one time fee. FUCK YOU. Remove DRM, All anticopying software, reduce prices and maybe you will reduce piracy.

123.2.2006 7:38

I agree with the industry not putting DRM on the music cd's. I buy my cd's and them copy them for use in my car so that, the orginals don't get damaged from heat or taken by someone from the vehicle. I feel the same way about being able to backup my DVD's. I just had my purchased copy of the Jackel go bad on me and I can now not play it, wished I had backed that one up too.

133.2.2006 8:53

I agree it is wrong. It is pure greed. I would bet Phil Collins knew as well. Is he going to start singing with Metallica?

143.2.2006 11:55

France has some wierd ideas sometimes, but I have to say, I agree with this one.

157.2.2006 19:57

HOT NEWS, AS THIS IS THE WAY IT SHOULD BE IN THE UNITED STATES..OR THE WORLD.. French court rules in favor of private P2P use 2/7/2006 8:31:42 PM, by Ken "Caesar" Fisher On the eve of France's Parliament returning to discuss the possibility of legalizing P2P via a compulsory or global license, the French judiciary has sent a message to deputies a day early, clearly siding with non-commercial users of P2P applications. The message from the French tribunal actually dates back to December 8 of last year, but the decision has just been made public in a rather serendipitous way. As the French think about the possibility of making P2P legal by merely charging internet users a flat monthly fee, the court looks to be suggesting that current usage is already legal. At issue was the fate of a young man ("Antoine G") charged with uploading and downloading over 1,200 audio files whose copyrights were represented by a French recording industry organization, the Société de Civile de Producteurs Phonographique. After a victory in a lower court, the SCPP had to represent its case to the district court of Paris (Tribunal de Grande Instance de Paris), seeking a final judgment against the man accused of the non-authorized reproduction and distribution of commercial content. The defendant had been an avid user of Kazaa, and during 2004, his activities were monitored by agents of the SCPP, revealing him to be a frequent user of the P2P network. He allegedly had almost 1900 files containing copyrighted materials. The ruling from the district court is rather clear (PDF, in French): the defendant was making use of these files for private, personal use, and thus his use was legal. According to the court, French law permits citizens to make fair use of copyrighted materials so long as that usage is not collective, or for commercial gain. Similar laws in Canada have also been used to attempt to differentiate between methods of exchange and legitimate use. In 2004, a Canadian court ruled that P2P applications were akin to photocopiers and that files on the network were like library books; the mere act of making a file available for download, for instance, would be no different than a library making a book available. How someone makes use of a copyrighted work (e.g., photocopying a portion for personal use as opposed to making entire copies for resale), not what tool is used, is of prime importance. Regardless, the P2P situation in Canada is still rather unclear, and lobbyists there are working hard to see the law changed to so that any such use is unequivocally illegal. For now, the French court appears to be giving the go-ahead not only for downloading music on P2P networks for personal use, but also for sharing files that have been downloaded. The Association of Audionautes, which is leading the defense, is a non-for-profit organization founded by French students as a means of defending against infringement claims made on behalf of the music industry. They have released an English press release celebrating the victory (PDF). "This most recent decision is consistent with the definitive decision of the French Appellate Court of Montpellier. It is an important stepping stone in our fight to legalize P2P," said Jean-Baptiste Soufron, Legal Counsel of the ADA. The ADA and the SCPP will see each other soon enough. The SCPP has appealed the decision to a higher court, although where things go from here on out appear to be in the hands of the French Parliament.

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 07 Feb 2006 @ 20:14

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