With the advent of the DMCA, content producers like record companies and movie studios are encroaching on the rights of ordinary citizens. How about us taking some of those rights back? There already is a digital consumer’s bill of rights out there that is reasonable, take a look at digitalconsumer.org’s example. It seems pretty straightforward.
In fact you would think we would not even need something like this, you would think we are already pretty well protected and we have the right to make copies of our own CDs for personal use. Well you would be wrong. Especially if you get a CD that has copy protection embedded somewhere because circumventing that protection is against the law. It does not matter that you bought it, it is not yours to copy, you are just paying rent for the use of the material on the CD or other digital media.
Lets say the particular CD you bought made your computer act funny. Your PC is suddenly slower, it crashes often. Your anti-virus software informs you of a rootkit that has been installed, and it came from a CD you bought. You crack the CD to see what evil virus was put on your machine and how you can get rid of it. Right there, you broke the law. You cannot do that, you cannot legally crack copy protection under the DMCA. Even if your computer has been infected by the Sony rootkit.
It seems time for a reality check, to get back to a bit of respect for consumer’s rights as well as copyright holders. American consumers stand for 2/3rds of the American economy, do corporations really want to alienate them by trampling on their rights?