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Copyright Law - Copying Rented Movies

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  • Copyright Law - Copying Rented Movies

    I'll make this short but sweet.

    A person I know said that it is okay for her to rent DVD's, copy them for herself, then return the original back to the company.

    It is tremendously hard trying to find an official answer as to whether this is okay or not. I am 99.9% sure this is absolutely not okay, but I just want some backup.

    Can you help? Any references (perhaps some sort of official website with copyright stuff) would be great.

    Thanks.

  • #2
    Nope... totally illegal. 100% totally illegal.

    No part of any DVD can be copied without official consent... and you won't get that either.
    John

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    • #3
      Is that in writing, officially? I cannot find it.

      One a side note, can you copy a DVD you own for the purpose of solely a backup incase you original breaks, etc? Just wondering for my sake.

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      • #4
        Give me a little while and I will get the written word... am off out for a while but I'll post later...
        John

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        • #5
          Thanks.................

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Loyalty4Life
            Is that in writing, officially? I cannot find it.
            Typically it's displayed immediately after you begin to play a DVD.

            Usually mentions a gigantic fine and jail time, too.

            Something like on this page:

            http://www.video777.com/general.html

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            • #7
              Copying a DVD or other medium is legal as long as it's not unauthorized copying. Renting a tape and making a copy for yourself would fall under unauthorized. As you can tell what I'm trying to get at...the magic word is "unauthorized".
              About the only thing that I can think of that's probably authorized is making a backup copy (as long as you don't plan on giving it to your sister or whatever) of something you already own.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Zonex
                About the only thing that I can think of that's probably authorized is making a backup copy (as long as you don't plan on giving it to your sister or whatever) of something you already own.
                Certainly not on any DVD that you rent!!!!
                John

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                • #9
                  There are some misconceptions above on how the law works. I'll try to explain it in the simplest of terms I can below.

                  Duplicating a movie DVD these days is illegal under just about any circumstance. Unless you have permission from A) the content owner or B) a a federal judge, you are not authorized to duplicate it.

                  Now, what I said above is a generalization, since there is an exception. But for the vast majority of the time, it is true.

                  The exception? First off, if you actually own a copy of the DVD and there is no copy-protection on the DVD, then you *may* be authorized to make a backup version. This differs from license to license, so you need to check to make sure that a backup is authorized. These days, chances of that are pretty slim.

                  The reason why you can just about "never" legally copy a DVD these days is not only because the license agreements explicitly don't allow you to make backup copies, but because the DVDs themselves are copy-protected. The Digital Millenium Copyright Act of 2000 has made bypassing/breaking/tricking/etc. copy protection technology illegal.

                  As a result of the DMCA, even if you are entitled to "fair use" under copyright law to make a copy of the DVD, if the DVD is copy-protected, then getting around the copy protection to make a copy of the DVD is illegal.
                  :)

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                  • #10
                    This proved to be a difficult one. I presumed that as I suggested earlier, this would be illegal - but there seems to be conflicting evidence on t'internet about the legalities!!

                    Here's a couple of links though:

                    http://reviews.cnet.com/4520-3513_7-5128652.html

                    http://www.mcps.co.uk/
                    John

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Loyalty4Life
                      Is that in writing, officially? I cannot find it.

                      One a side note, can you copy a DVD you own for the purpose of solely a backup incase you original breaks, etc? Just wondering for my sake.
                      That depends were you live, here in the UK you are not even allowed to do that with a bought DVD Film, even though you own it.

                      Crazy I know.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Loyalty4Life
                        a side note, can you copy a DVD you own for the purpose of solely a backup incase you original breaks, etc?
                        Technically speaking, when you buy a CD or DVD, you only buy the right to watch/listen to the media contained within it - the actual delivery medium is irrelevant and you don't actually 'own' it.

                        A little known fact is that should something happen to the storage medium that makes it unwatchable, the distributor should replace your damaged disk etc. for a minimal cost - usually not much more than the cost of the disk itself (a few pennies) plus postage costs - you simply need to contact the distributor and send them your unusable copy.

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                        • #13
                          hmm so I was wondering If you are the only one licensed to watch the content when you buy the DVD is it illegal to watch that movie with other people or let someone borrow the DVD?

                          Crazy stuff but that sounds like it is the case.

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                          • #14
                            I think the words controlling that are something like... 'This DVD/Video is not to be shown for public broadcast or for profit' etc...
                            John

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by BamaStangGuy
                              hmm so I was wondering If you are the only one licensed to watch the content when you buy the DVD is it illegal to watch that movie with other people or let someone borrow the DVD?

                              Crazy stuff but that sounds like it is the case.
                              As long as it does not legally constitute a "public performance," you should be fine. Usually, this "public performance" is defined as either A) showing the movie at a place that charges admission or B) showing this movie to a large gathering of people (of course, what constitutes "large gathering of people" is oftentimes left to the courts to interpret).

                              You should be able to let someone borrow the DVD, no problems.
                              :)

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