Back Up Legal-Illegal

So what is the legal stance on back ups of your own DVD’s/CD/Software, in America, is it legal or not. I know us brits are banned, but I was under the impression, that the Americans had the legal right to back up 1 copy of their media?

It’s something of a conundrum.

It is 100% legal to have and/or make a backup for your own personal use of any DVD, CD, or software program you own.

HOWEVER, under the DMCA (which is a bad law that is being challenged as we speak) it is ILLEGAL to circumvent copy protection in order to do so.

In other words, you can make a backup if you can figure out a way to do it without decrypting the DVD, circumventing the protection on an audio disc, or cracking the software program.

In Canada as well, If you own the media, You are legally entitled to make a copy.

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In many other countries you have the right to make a backup of your legally owned DVDs/CDs as the law permists it and the price of the blank media contains some extra percentage covering the possible copyright content on the media.

I’m in Canada. In light of the Sony issue, a newpaper article in today’s paper discusses a court decision of a few years ago where a Canadian judge ruled on media backups. He stated that it was up to the buyer and not the vendor to decide what one does with a legally purchased product. A more recent Autralian judgement expressed much the same legal opinion. This is very much in line with the understanding of most advocates of fair use. No one is talking about redistribution of copyright material but only the right to transcode, edit, change format or move to a new media to facilitate a personal preference. In many countries these rights are implicit but not clearly stated because cases have never been brought before the courts for a ruling. I know that in Canada the entertainment industry is lobbying very hard with our politicians to enact stricter legislation to remove the rights we currently hold.

Your right gumshoe99, But now with the vote of non confidence in our goverment, we will be heading for the polls. So it could be a least another year before we even see this issue address in parliament. I don’t think the copyright issue will be at the top of the list of concerns, because there is more important things to be address.


Unfortunately they have solicited all parties on this issue and it seems to have crossed political lines. What disturbed me was when one elected official was heard repeating the industry line that it should be illegal and therefore a criminal act to break encryption on protected discs even before it had gone to committee for discussion.

The Sony fiasco and recent civil lawsuits and the threat of future criminal lawsuits tying up the police, courts and jails seems to have at least raised some questions about the direction copyright protection should take. Imagine that our legislators want to decriminilise simple possession of cannabis but then prosecute and jail offenders because they backed up a disc so their kids wouldn’t scratch the original.

It’s my hope that common sense will win out and that limited copying of purchased discs will continue to be legal for private use.

This is an international Board/forum and this one and many other audio/video sites I’ve visited or are a member of have generally accepted fair use as a right and permit discussions along those lines.

However, each individual needs to make their own decision based on the laws in their own country about backing up their purchased movies and music and should not be swayed by the open discusion of others who may be under a different political/legal jurisdiction.

what’s the rule’s on this in australia?

I totally agree with ya, I just think things like medical sytem, softwood lumber, etc will be more pressing. I just don’t think that a party is going to run with copyright issue in their platform.

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You’re right they won’t run on it but as I understand it, a bill looking into the matter has already been presented to the house a while back and it’s now been sent to an all party committee for review and public discussion. Once the election is over regardless of the winner the E_ industry will no doubt make sure it continues. I agree that it’s not a priority with Canadians at large but since when is that important? :wink:

Back-up of copyright programs (including games) is legal so long as program is not modified and so long as copy is not of an unlawful copy.

Back-up of copyright music or movies is illegal (though highly unlikely that anyone would ever be prosecuted or sued if they had done no more than back-up a cd or dvd that they’d actually bought).

Yes a bill has been presented, but not voted on, and it will be squashed like make others on Mon 28,2005 when the official non confidence vote in goverment takes place. It’s just matter of time, we will just have to wait. Just trying to state that we be safe for a little while longer.

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Check this out.

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