Tech companies, studios in copy-protection talks


Technology companies are seeking to engage movie studios in a mutual quest
for a solution to difficult copy-protection problems.

In response, Jack Valenti, president of the Motion Picture Association of
America, said Wednesday "we are ready to begin the talks immediately, with no
preconditions. With trust in each other's commitment to move swiftly to resolve
whatever chasms may exist, the sooner we begin, the sooner we can come to an

Valenti, representing the MPAA's seven member studios, asked the technology
companies to begin talks by the first week of August.

Technology companies -- including Microsoft, Intel, Sybase, Dell,
Hewlett-Packward, Motorola, IBM, NCR, EMC and Unisys -- say any talks about
resolving the dispute over how content should be copy-protected must include
topics other than a technology fix.

They want movie studios to consider other means of solving the piracy
problem, such as better educating consumers about the law, enforcing existing
laws, working together to use the Internet as a distribution mechanism for
high-value content, and discussing what consumers' reasonable expectations
should be regarding access to content.

Technology companies and movie and TV studios clash strongly over how digital
copy-protection should be implemented. Studios want strong copy-protection
installed in all devices than can make digital copies, including computers.
Technology companies want minimal protection, saying that adding it slows down
computer performance.