[Ubuntu-SG] Should we "Say No to Piracy"?

Tom Goh tomgohj at gmail.com
Mon Jun 22 20:45:17 BST 2009


Sorry for being so long winded and passionate about this.  I worked for 
a company that primarily dealt with companies that were under litigation 
for patent infringements.  Prior to that I was just happy using FOSS but 
after I really learned what it was all about it really disgusted me.


John Thng wrote:
> 2009/6/22 Nick HS <nick at daenim.com <mailto:nick at daenim.com>>
> 
>     On Monday 22,June,2009 07:06 PM, suhaw koh wrote:
>>     Hi Chew,
>>
>>     Many thanks for your input:  They are most instructive in this
>>     discussion.
>>
>>     Yes, I fully agree that there are many ambiguities in the law:
>>     Being very broadly worded, they may (or may not) cover many
>>     aspects.  And the truth is that nobody (even lawyers) can say for
>>     certain whether any specific thing is or is not covered until they
>>     are actually tested in the courts, ie somebody bring about a legal
>>     suit.
>>
>>     So, the only reliable guide we have as to what the law covers is
>>     based on the cases that have been decided in the courts.  Thus
>>     far, the courts have been quite reasonable.  For example, a strict
>>     reading of the law would define the buffer and RAM memory in
>>     computers as making illegal copies whenever a program is run, no
>>     court would every take such a nonsensical interpretation.
>>
>>     My point is simply that I propose we work on the assumption that
>>     the law is reasonable and where there are undesireable features of
>>     laws, we should work to helping the legislators/government iron
>>     out the kinks.
>>
>>     If we were to get bogged down by may/may-not questions, we will
>>     never get anything done.
>>
>>     And now for a little trivia regarding your point about "Perfectly
>>     legal things that TUSG do could be promoting Ubuntu, having
>>     release parties, open source education, etc." Check this
>>     out: http://www.elections.gov.sg/agc/presidentialSubLeg10.htm
>>
>>     :-)
>>
>>     Cheers.
>>
>>
>>     suhaw
>>
>>
>>
>>     2009/6/22 chewearn <chew4097 at gmail.com <mailto:chew4097 at gmail.com>>
>>
>>
>>
>>         2009/6/22 suhaw koh <kohsuhaw at gmail.com
>>         <mailto:kohsuhaw at gmail.com>>
>>
>>             Hi Chew,
>>
>>
>>             2009/6/22 chewearn <chew4097 at gmail.com
>>             <mailto:chew4097 at gmail.com>>
>>
>>                 2009/6/22 suhaw koh <kohsuhaw at gmail.com
>>                 <mailto:kohsuhaw at gmail.com>>
>>
>>                     <edit>
>>
>>                     As for the more recent Nov 2008 DL article about
>>                     Sim Lim raids that Chew quoted, they are
>>                     specifically about modifying devices to circumvent
>>                     access control measures, ie modifying the Wii
>>                     machines to play pirated software.  
>>
>>
>>                     <edit>
>>
>>
>>                 My point is that the Law could be broadly worded, such
>>                 that the "device" could reasonably be applied to a
>>                 Personal Computer.
>>
>>
>>             Most laws are broadly worded as they cannot be expected to
>>             deal with every minute detail.
>>
>>
>>              
>>
>>                 In other word, the decss package *could* be considered
>>                 illegal in Singapore (just like in US), because it's
>>                 enable circumvention of the DVD access control.
>>
>>
>>             While circumvention of DVD access control may be illegal,
>>             we also know that there is also an express provision in
>>             Section 261C(10) allowing for import or sale of devices
>>             whose sole purpose is to control market segmentation for
>>             access to films e.g. multi-coded DVD player.
>>
>>
>>
>>         Sorry, I used the wrong words previously.
>>
>>         What I meant by "access control" was of being able to
>>         read/play but not copy a DVD; something which the CSS
>>         encryption (together with the copy bits and DVD consortium
>>         licensing agreement) is meant to do.
>>
>>         I did not mean "access control" with respect to the DVD region
>>         code.  I agree that the Law has a specific exception to
>>         invalidate DVD region coding.
>>
>>          
>>
>>
>>              
>>
>>                 My personal opinion: in practice, Singapore is a very
>>                 pro-business country.  It is very likely that anything
>>                 we do *in this matter* that would be detrimental to
>>                 "business" would get us into trouble.
>>
>>
>>             In that case, the very existence of TUSG would get us into
>>             trouble: Anything we may want to do can be considered as
>>             being detrimental to business.
>>
>>
>>         Let's not "over-extrapolate".  I am referring to specific
>>         potentially illegal circumvention packages, such as decss,
>>         win32codecs, etc. (note: I emphasis the words "in this matter"
>>         to my previous reply above).
>>
>>
>>         Perfectly legal things that TUSG do could be promoting Ubuntu,
>>         having release parties, open source education, etc.
>>
>>
>>         Btw, it seems we are going a bit off track from your initial
>>         post.  I don't mean to say I am against joining HIP (at the
>>         moment, I am undecided).
>>
>>         I replied to this thread because I have previously worked for
>>         a MNC designing DVD devices, so I thought I could add my 2
>>         cents knowledge in this area.
>>
>>
>>         Regards
>>         Chew
>>
>>
> 
>     I'm not for TUSG joining HIP as I (personally) fail to see how our
>     agendas are aligned, and if push ever came to shove HIP and the
>     Singapore government would be more then likely to trumpet the
>     pro-business ideals along with strict patent laws. However that's
>     just me :)
> 
>     Thanks Nick
> 
>     --
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>     https://lists.ubuntu.com/mailman/listinfo/ubuntu-sg
> 
> 
> For patents, software patents should not last so long. Patents has been 
> infecting the MP3 codec and others. There's no definite date when will 
> MP3 codec be free.
> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MP3#Licensing_and_patent_issues
> 
> And do not confuse the term IP with others.
> http://www.gnu.org/philosophy/not-ipr.html
> 
> Regards
> John
> 




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