motion picture that everyone else has paid to see at a theater.
If this seems like something out of a not-so distant digitalfuture, then it appears that the future is now.
Digital technology represents an increasingly dangerous, ifnot already realized, threat to the protection of copyrights inthe global marketplace.
While there is protection in copyright,throughout history the law has been slow to adapt to the issuespresented by new technologies.
Digital technologies pose evenmore issues than prior analog technologies because these digitaltechnologies reduce the cost of making "perfect" copies andallow these copies to be distributed quickly, easily andcheaply.
Going back as far as the Middle Ages, the development of anew technology usually caused people to fear that the technologywould rob people of their rights as well as destroy well-established business models.
“Every new reproduction
Fighting the Phantom Menace: The Motion Picture Industry’s Struggle to Protect Itself Against Digital Piracy
, 2 Vand. J. Ent. L. & Prac. 149, 149 (2000) (analyzing the movie industry’s responses to onlinepiracy).
In January 2001, Apple introduced a new G4 desktop computer that includes iDVD software and DVD-R/CD-RWdrives that enables users to digitize movies and burn them into DVDs. Compaq has a similar desktop on the way.The $3,500 computer incorporates a Pioneer drive that itself was priced at $5,000 weeks earlier.
note 2, at 92. The enormous size of feature-film files makes wide-scale piracy impractical for anyone without a T1line and a lot of storage capacity.
(last visited Apr. 17, 2001) <http://www.bearshare.com> andI
(visited Apr. 17, 2001) <http://www.imesh.com/index.cfm> are just a couple of the numerous free programsavailable that allow users to swap movie files – many illegally.
note 3, at 150. (discussing the many novel and complex copyright issues confronting the motionpicture industry as new technologies are developed).
Ronald B. Standler,
Response of Law to New Technology
(last visited Apr. 17, 2001)<http://www.rbs2.com/lt.htm> (examining the ways that new technologies have revolutionized society).
Digital technologies inherently facilitate copyright piracy. For instance, while both analog and digital tapingfacilitate piracy allowing for easy reproduction, digital copying excaberates this problem, because unlike analogcopies, digital copies do not degrade in quality with subsequent generations of copies. Media for storing digitalinformation, such as CDs, floppy disks, or DVDs, also benefit pirating enterprises because these media are generallyless expensive to manufacture and store than their analog equivalents of paper, records or cassettes.
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