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[ NNSquad ] Re: [IP] US: Hollywood can disable TV set features

I can understand that in the 1930âs and even the 1950âs the Federal Communications Commission saw its role as engineering a marketplace because it didnât seem as if the industry was viable on its own due to the limits of the technology and the need to define every aspect of a communications silo.


Today we know that the elements can be decoupled and in doing so we enable a great deal of innovation. The content can be delivered over IP or another transport and a TV is an arbitrary construct consisting of a viewing surface and an input source. The Set Top Box replaced the tuner during a transition period.


What is the rationale for the FCC to continue to engineer every aspect of the delivery system and to say how content should be managed in what amounts to a cartel?


If Hollywood wants to require DRM in devices it could try to sell such devices and software on the open market. HBOGo and others are doing that. I may not be happy out this but shouldnât the FTC and agencies be involved instead?


Has there at least been an impact assessment of damage done by sacrificing our ability to innovate in using the content to the needs of a particular business model from a century go? Is there any technology that Hollywood has not opposed lest it level the playing field?


Is unviewing next?


From: Dave Farber [mailto:dave@farber.net]
Sent: Friday, May 07, 2010 18:35
To: ip
Subject: [IP] US: Hollywood can disable TV set features


Begin forwarded message:

From: Richard Forno <rforno@infowarrior.org>
Date: May 7, 2010 5:35:41 PM EDT
To: List Infowarrior <infowarrior@attrition.org>
Cc: Farber Dave <dave@farber.net>
Subject: US: Hollywood can disable TV set features

Film Studios Allowed by U.S. to Use Anti-Piracy Technology on TV Equipment

By Todd Shields - May 07, 2010


The film industry can block outputs on home television equipment so studios can offer first-run movies while preventing viewers from making illicit copies, U.S. regulators said.

Temporarily disabling the outputs will âenable a new business modelâ that wouldnât develop in the absence of such anti-piracy protection, the Federal Communications Commission said today in an order.

Home viewing of recently released movies over cable and satellite systems would provide revenue for studios such as Viacom Inc.âs Paramount Pictures and Sony Corp.âs film division, which have seen DVD sales drop as more people get films through Internet, mail-order and kiosk rental services. The advocacy group Public Knowledge is among opponents who say the plan interferes with viewer choice.

The FCC order ââwill allow the big firms for the first time to take control of a consumerâs TV set or set-top box, blocking viewing of a TV program or motion picture,â Gigi Sohn, president of Washington-based Public Knowledge, said in a statement.

The Motion Picture Association of America asked the FCC in 2008 for a waiver from rules against disabling video outputs so that its members could send movies over cable and satellite services using âsecure and protected digital outputs,â according to the trade groupâs petition at the agency.

âThis action is an important victory for consumers who will now have far greater access to see recent high-definition movies in their homes,â Bob Pisano, president and interim chief executive officer of the MPAA, said today in a statement. âIt is a major step forward in the development of new business models by the motion picture industry to respond to growing consumer demand.â

The Washington-based MPAA represents Paramount Pictures, Sonyâs film unit, News Corp.âs Twentieth Century Fox, General Electric Co.âs NBC Universal, Walt Disney Co. and Time Warner Inc.âs Warner Bros. Pictures.

To contact the reporter on this story: Todd Shields in Washington at tshields3@bloomberg.net