The Null Device

Save Betamax

Tomorrow (Wednesday 29 September) is Save Betamax Call-In Day; the EFF and others are asking people in the US to join a chorus of opposition to the INDUCE act, which is coming up before Congress. This piece of legislation, backed by the copyright industry, aims to reverse the "Betamax decision", making technological innovators liable for possible copyright infringements resulting from their technologies, and thus giving Big Copyright a veto over innovation; a veto which, had they had in the past, would have squashed everything from the VCR to the iPod. (And if you think that this doesn't affect you because you're not in the US, think again. Australia automatically gets US intellectual-property law (minus the constitutional fair-use provisions) thanks to our fearless leaders' Free Trade Agreement; others will get these laws foisted on them in the next round of WIPO treaties and/or copyright-law harmonisations.)

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