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[ EEPI-Discuss ] Trying to Plug the Analog Hole -- An Exercise in Futility

[ A copy of the MPAA draft document that details their
  "analog hole plugging" proposal is available at:
   https://www.eepi.org/analog-hole-2005.pdf -- a
   must read. -- Lauren ]

------- Forwarded Message

From: David Farber 
Subject: [IP] Trying to Plug the Analog Hole -- An Exercise in Futility
Date: Wed, 2 Nov 2005 09:13:51 -0500
To: ip@v2.listbox.com

Begin forwarded message:

From: Lauren Weinstein 
Date: November 1, 2005 9:09:42 PM EST
To: dave@farber.net
Cc: lauren@vortex.com
Subject: Trying to Plug the Analog Hole -- An Exercise in Futility


I won't even bother itemizing here the long list of ways in which
attempts to "copy protect" analog sources are outrageous,
oppressive, anti-consumer, and expressions of hubris on high, with a
vast range of negative technological and social consequences, both
planned and unintended by the proponents of such malarkey.

Instead, I have a simple comment for the would-be
"analog hole pluggers":

Take a memo guys, it ain't gonna work!  You will put yourselves,
politicians, and the rest of us through the wringer, and in the end
the video piracy situation will be as bad as before -- probably even
worse since otherwise law-abiding and anti-piracy viewers may be
driven to piracy just out of spite from your overreaching.

The main reason that the plan is doomed from the word go is that it
only takes *one* digital copy of any given material to render the
analog hole meaningless for that item.  And that digital copy will
be able to saturate the Internet despite any attempts at controlling
ISPs, blocking file sharing, or even the return of Hypnovision!

There will always be very large numbers of "uncontrolled" analog
conversion points.  It is guaranteed that unauthorized
analog-to-digital conversions will take place, in most cases at
multiple locations.  And once that happens, it's game over for
controlling the digital existence of that particular item.  This
*will* happen with every single desirable item of media that you're
attempting to control down by the ol' analog hole.

So in the end, what you'll have accomplished is inconveniencing
honest consumers -- who aren't your real enemies -- while living
up to old Soviet-style information control philosophies (which,
by the way, were largely ineffective for them, too.)

I don't like piracy.  I'm sympathetic to *legitimate* concerns about
piracy.  But as a famous fictional starship engineer once said,
"Ya' cannot change the laws of physics!"  Attempts to plug the
analog hole won't do any good, but will do a lot of damage to
technology, society, and -- oh yes -- to you.

Lauren Weinstein
lauren@pfir.org or lauren@vortex.com or lauren@www.eepi.org
Tel: +1 (818) 225-2800
Co-Founder, PFIR
   - People For Internet Responsibility - https://www.pfir.org
Co-Founder, EEPI
   - Electronic Entertainment Policy Initiative - https://www.eepi.org
Moderator, PRIVACY Forum - https://www.vortex.com
Member, ACM Committee on Computers and Public Policy
Lauren's Blog: https://lauren.vortex.com
DayThink: https://daythink.vortex.com

------- End of Forwarded Message
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