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Copyright law poses problem for TVMyPod

TVMyPod’s service of conveniently placing customer-selected DVD content to Apple iPods might be violating copyright laws.

The Massachusetts-based company provides the service for every iPod purchased from them. The customer needs only to pay the price of the iPod. The DVDs are separately bought through Amazon.com. After copying the contents of the DVD to the iPod, both are then delivered to the buyer.

Though the service is currently free and is convenient for those who do not have the time nor the equipment to transfer files from DVDs to ther iPods, the question arises if the act is prohibited under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act.

Under the said statute, DVD contents are protected, and the unauthorized recording and distribution of the same violates the provision therein.

In defense, the company said that they do not use decryption in providing their service. TVMyPod’s co-founder, Vijay Raghavan, commented, “It’s kind of an obsolete law since Congress was not taking into consideration portability. These players are exploding on the market, but the legality of it can sometimes be in a gray area.”

The company plans to charge for the service soon, which entails users bringing or shipping their own iPods to the store for new transfers or updates, and a subscription service to keep content constantly updated.

About Melanie Tan

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