SolaByte Promotes Fair Use Copying of Motion Picture Content at 7th DMCA Triennial Hearings


April 11, 2018 Washington DC:   Section 1201 of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act prohibits anyone circumventing an encryption technology protecting copyrighted works in digital form.  While the rightful purchaser of a copyrighted work has the right to make digital copies for personal use (Fair Use) they're prevented from making these copies, typically stored on DVD or Blu-Ray discs, because the files on these discs are encrypted.  Using software or tools to decrypt this content violates DMCA, essentially blocking the consumer's Fair Use rights.

Every three years, the Copyright office, which is part of the Library of the Congress, is required to hold hearings to consider petitions that would exempt certain uses of content within the scope the DMCA.  These hearings are currently underway and on April 11, 2018, SolaByte presented information describing how its technology can be used to transfer the consumer's movies and TV series content stored on optical disc to new media or the cloud while improving content security.  Testimony included market data and evidence of consumer harm suffered by millions of law abiding citizens who simply want to make back up copies of their video collection, protect it from platform obsolescence, or make it play on a variety of screens.  

The motion picture industry and their retail partners are using the DMCA to collect fees for the right to convert movies or TV series content stored on DVD or Blu-Ray to digital files. Commonly called Disc to Digital.   Speaking at the hearing, Keith Chatfield, SolaByte CEO and Co-founder described this as a "toll being charged for the consumer to exercise existing rights which is equivalent to Media Ransom," and he urged the copyright office to grant SolaByte an exemption to produce Fair Use copies on behalf of the consumer.  

Show your support for SolaByte and its work to restore your Fair Use rights by becoming a SolaByte Friend.  For a complete copy of SolaByte's presentation become a SolaByte Friend and contact us.