p2pnet.net News:- Technologies designed to restrict use of copyright material in geographic regions, including coding in DVD players and game consoles, won’t get special protection under changes to Australia’s copyright laws, expected to pass this week.
This means mod chips, which let gamers ignore the despised regional coding and run games made for foreign markets, will be legal, as long as they, “also overcome measures that restrict the use of DVDs and games titles purchased legally in other regions,” says The Australian.
“Games manufacturers will need to have technology in their consoles to deal with region coding and copyright protection that operate independently,” says the story, pointing out Sony lost a High Court battle to outlaw mod-chips in Australia in October 2005.
“The hearing ended a three-year battle against backyard mod-chip supplier Eddy Stevens, which reached the full bench of the Federal Court,” it states.
An abbreviated Sydney Morning Herald timeline of events summed things up like this:
- 2001: Sony files against Stevens, who’s running one of many Oz businesses that supply and install mod-chips which get around Sony’s regional coding
- July, 2002: After analysing the way in which the PlayStation console operated, the Australian Federal Court concludes playing a copied game doesn`t involve breach of copyright.
- September, 2002: Sony appeals
- July 30, 2003: The full bench upholds the appeal and, Following this decision, other modders shut down operations, says the story.
- Stevens’ lawyers go to the High Court, which ultimately accepts Stevens’ argument that while making a pirated copy of a game is illegal, playing a game by using a mod-chip isn`t.
Now, “The federal Government was expected to amend provisions of the Copyright Act dealing with TPMs to make mod-chips illegal as part of its obligations under its Free Trade Agreement with the US,” says The Age, adding, “Sony declined the opportunity to comment on the new laws when contacted late yesterday.”