Boing Boing: House introduces mandatory radio-crippling law

From a Boing Boing story noting that the US House of Representatives has introduced a mandatory radio-crippling law.

There are serveral disturbing parts of the proposed law, dubbed the Audio Broadcast Flag Licensing Act of 2006. The relatively short full text of the bill can be found on Thomas at the Library of Congress.

One of the most problematic portions of the bill would prohibit “unauthorized copying and redistribution” of digital radio. The bill itself has language that MIGHT allow exemptions such as fair use or the myriad other exemptions, but it isn’t clear, and the bill relegates these uses to the “custormary use of broadcast content by consumers.” I find the terms customary use and consumers disingenuous. “Customary use” smacks of the problematic “historical use” that some content publishing industries are advocating as a replacement for fair use. Historic/Customary use is not sufficient to protect the public interest in copyrighted material. “Consumers” completely ignores members of the public who are not necessarily what a market would consider consumers- like, say, instructors teaching in the classroom, for one example.

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