[free-sklyarov] picketting Adobe?

Robert Lemos robert at infoserf.net
Thu Jul 19 10:27:04 PDT 2001


This issue here is not that Adobe wants to take away your rights, but
that your rights have already been curtailed as appled to digital media
by the DMCA. 

While IANAL (but I do cover this area), in Universal v. Reimerez et al.,
the court ruled that the Fair Use provisions in the Audio Home Recording
Act do not trump the DMCA, but just the opposite. That Congress, in
passing the DMCA, decided to apply the fair use provisions in a narrower
context, so in passing the DMCA, Congress essentially decided -- whether
it was their intent or not -- to reduce the fair-use rights of citizens.

Not to make excuses for Adobe, but the company is just using one of the
available tools out there to reduce competition in the market for their
products. That's what business is all about. They have a right to do
that under the law. 

While the bad publicity, may get them to withdraw from the case, which
could -- and I repeat, could -- cause the DOJ to drop the case (since
their main witness would be gone), that still leaves the fair-use
restrictions of the DMCA in place.

As unfeeling as this may sound, it would seem to me that the best
interest of citizens would be served if all three cases -- Universal v.
Reimerez et al., Felton v. RIAA et al. and U.S. DOJ v. Sklyarov -- got
tried, went to appeal and then ended up in front of the Supreme court.

In no other way, except if Congress passes a law that trumps the DMCA,
will the domain of the fair-use provisions be expanded.


Robert Lemos
Technical writer

Klepht wrote:
> >>>>> "DB" == Derek Balling <dredd at megacity.org> writes:
>     DB> DMCA violations are something the people "don't understand",
>     DB> by and large. Around HERE, in our cloistered little high tech
>     DB> environs, there may be a larger-than-normal understanding, but
>     DB> the masses don't understand it all.
> The point is very, very simple: FAIR USE. "Fair use" means that if you
> buy something, you get to use it however you want. If you buy a
> newspaper, you can use it to line your birdcage. If you buy a book,
> you can give it to your Mom to read. If you buy a piece of software,
> you can make a backup. If you buy an electronic book, you can change
> the font so it doesn't hurt your eyes.
> People understand "fair." People understand "computer files." People
> understand "my computer, my files." People understand "a man is in
> jail unfairly."
> Down to the specifics:
> 1. Adobe Inc. wants to take away YOUR rights to use files you paid
>    for, on YOUR computer, as you see fit. They don't trust you to be
>    honest, so they use software to take away as many of your rights as
>    they can.
> 2. A programmer from Russia named Dmitry Sklyarov figured out how to
>    stop Adobe from doing this.
> 3. Because of a misguided law called the DMCA, someone who writes
>    software that protects your rights as a consumer can go to jail.
> 4. When he was visiting the U.S. for a conference, Adobe asked the FBI
>    to put him in jail, which they did.
> 5. And we think that's unfair.
> 6. So we want Dmitry Sklyarov out of jail immediately.
> 7. And we want the DMCA repealed.
> Jeez, man, this is --waaaaay-- simpler than Mumia Abu Jamal.
> ~Klepht
> --
> klepht at eleutheria.org
> http://www.eleutheria.org/
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