News

Kaleidescape Loses DVD Ripping Appeal Against DVD CCA

Manufacturer of high-end movie servers may now have to stop making its products.


Steve Crowe · August 12, 2009

It’s been a rough two days for advocates of DVD ripping devices.

One day after a preliminary injunction was imposed on RealNetworks’ RealDVD software, a California appeals court overturned a previous ruling that may now force Kaleidescape to stop making its movie servers that copy and store protected DVDs onto hard-drive servers.

Both cases say the manufacturers are bound by the entire Content Scramble System (CSS) licensing regime, which prevents duplicating DVDs.

Kaleidescape was accused in 2004 by the DVD CCA, which licenses the CSS for DVDs, of breaching a contract by creating its movie servers. Kaleidescape argued that there’s no language in the DVD CCA that prevents developing products that copy DVDs.

Judge Leslie C. Nichols agreed with Kaleidescape in March 2007, finding that there was no breach of contract. After the DVD CCA lost the first battle, it wanted to add the following amendment to the licensing agreement requiring a DVD be present during playback. Here’s the statement:

6.4. Certain Requirements for DVD Products. DVD Products, alone or in combination with other DVD Products, shall not be designed to descramble scrambled CSS Data when the DVD Disc containing such CSS Data and associated CSS Keys is not physically present in the DVD Player or DVD Drive (as applicable), and a DVD Product shall not be designed to make or direct the making of a persistent copy of CSS Data that has been descrambled from such DVD Disc by such DVD Product.

The DVD CCA appealed the March 2007 decision, however, and on Wednesday the two-year-old ruling was overturned.

“The Appellate Court recognized what we have maintained all along, Kaleidescape had agreed to a complete contract that mandated certain requirements with which devices must conform in order to be Content Scramble System (CSS) compliant. We look forward to returning to the trial court to obtain an injunction requiring Kaleidescape to comply with its contractual obligations under the CSS license agreement and specifications.”

The case will be sent to the Superior Court in Santa Clara County in California to be re-examined. If Kaleidescape is found guilty, an injunction could be imposed to ban production of Kaleidescape’s products.



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  About the Author

Steve Crowe has been writing about technology since 2008. He lives in Belchertown, MA with his wife and daughter. Have a suggestion or a topic you want to read more about? Email Steve at scrowe@ehpub.com

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