From the Annals: Kaleidescape Lawsuit & the Shenanigans of the Copy Police
I've spent the last few weeks traveling to dealer events, where manufacturers and buyers' groups host hundreds of their top dealers.
I get a lot of questions from these dealers, about the state of technology, trends among homeowners, etc. But on the top of the mind of most installers these days is still that nagging question: What's happening with the Kaleidescape lawsuit, filed way back in December 2004?
The short answer: It keeps going and going.
The longer answer: No, it isn't Hollywood that is suing this manufacturer of the ultra-high-end video servers. It is the DVD CCA, the group that sets the licensing rules for the Content Scramble System (CSS), an encoding scheme used by DVD makers to thwart the use of DVDs by anything other than a DVD playback product with (licensed) CSS decoding software.
Kaleidescape has a license from the DVD CCA to employ CSS decoding in its media servers.
The DVD CCA sued Kaleidescape for breach of contract, claiming the company "built a system to do precisely what the license and CSS are designed to prevent ... the wholesale copying of protected DVDs," said William Coats, the lead litigation counsel for DVD CCA, in a statement announcing the suit.
By the time this case finally settles, the issue will be moot, because better copy-protection technologies and rules will be in the place. However, that doesn't help our friend at Kaleidescape who have to spend resources on this silly lawsuit that would be better spent on product innovation.
Anyway, for those who would like some more insight into the Kaleidescape suit and the shenanigans of the DVD CCA, here's some light reading from the CE Pro annals (Feb. 2005).
Copy Protection Group Sues Kaleidescape
DVD CCA Is an Innovation-Stifling Cartel