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Public Knowledge Plugs Place Shifting

Public Knowledge Friday told the Copyright Office that the movie studios are off base and that allowing DVD owners to circumvent copy protections and make personal copies for other media, like computers, will not spur more online video piracy.

PK, which sought the waiver, essentially argues that since there is already widespread circumvention of technical protections for both legal and illegal uses, the waiver will not materially increase the likelihood of piracy. It argues that the only people discouraged by the copying restriction are "law-abiding individuals who wish, for example, to space shift motion pictures contained on DVDs they lawfully acquired," said PK.

It pointed out that the studios would still be free to go after pirates who copy copy-protected DVDs for illegal purposes -- mass distribution -- just not individuals "place shifting" their DVD collections from one device they own to another.