Friday, June 09, 2006

Your office is on fire....

Your office is on fire - are you prepared? What do you leave behind and how fast can you recover from a disaster? If you don't posses a plan for such situation then you shoud rush over to Carstein's blog and read Part 4 of the "So you want to be a CSO" series!

Hmm, BTW maybe it's time to translate the series into English? If your interested just drop me a note, if Carstein won't do it I'll do (if he allows me to ;)

Monday, June 05, 2006

DRM once again...

There's an open letter over at regarding the implementation of DRM in Polish law. I'll try to provide an ęnglish translation for you, although it'll be very rough, blame my poor English skills for that (as a sidenote - I must do something with it if I want to relocate somewhere else...)

We, the undersigned, oppose the implementation of such restrictive regulations regarding Digital Right Management.

The proposed changes in copyright law presented by the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage fully legalize systems which allow content publishers freely restrict access to works in digital form. The circumvention of such restrictions are proposed to be penalized with up to 3 years in prison. Those changes will have negative impact on Polish culture, they will hinder or even prevent access to its treasures, lower the position of content creators and harm consumers.

Freedom of knowledge and information is world's biggest achievement - the right to use works in libraries, museums, universities and together with friends. All that because the Fair Use rule. But the proposed changes legalize DRM will eradicate this. Existing today laws which permit the usage of various works for peronal use or which allow sharing them with friends, for educational use, for academical purposes will, free access for libraries, using different works in your own and even accessing them by disabled persons will become empty words. This is also dangerous for the future of Polish culture, because fair use is essential to creativity.

A world, which is proposed to us by the new law project, is a world where you can listen to a song only on one audio player, the movie you have bought will erase itself in a few months, where you can't record a TV show on video and where lending a book will be a crime for which you can be sent to jail.

We don't want such a world. When implementing legislation regulating the usage of DRM systems one should try to keep proper balance between the interests of publishers, creators rights for proper payment and the constitutional rights of society to participate in the cultural life of the nation.

The legislation regarding DRM systems is implemented because that's a required directive of the European Union. But this law doesn't remove fair use, it does even require that member states protect competition and consumer rights. In the EU member states, especially in France and Germany, European law respects those aspect. We should make use of their experience.

The Office of Competition and Consumer Protection, Internet Society Poland, Stowarzyszenie Przyjaciół Integracji and the Polish Librarians Association have publicated their proposals in this matter. We call the Polish government and Parliament to consider their positions