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Electronic Frontier Foundation DRM Hardware Your Rights Online

Jailbreaking Could Soon Become Illegal Again 239

Posted by timothy
from the so-stay-in-that-cage dept.
Diggester writes "Back in July 2010, the United States government approved a few exemptions in a federal law which made jailbreaking/rooting of electronic devices (iPhones and Android devices) legal. The court ruling stated that every three years, the exemptions have to be renewed considering they don't infringe any copyrighted material. The three-year period is due to expire and the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) is looking to get the exemptions renewed. In order to do so, they have filed a petition which aims at government to declare jailbreaking legal once again. In addition to that, EFF is also asking for a change in the original ruling to include tablet devices." Here's the EFF's own page on the issue.
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Jailbreaking Could Soon Become Illegal Again

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday January 26, 2012 @05:35PM (#38833659)

    The DMCA makes circumventing digital security illegal - and this could include jailbreaking your phone / tablet / computer if it ever comes to that.
    It has a provision for making exceptions, but unlike the DMCA the exceptions only last for three years. If they're not renewed they automatically lapse.

  • Headline correction (Score:5, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday January 26, 2012 @05:56PM (#38833897)

    How about "EFF working to keep jailbreaking legal" as a headline? The OP (who has also linked to the article on his own retarded ad-filled site) is just sensationalising this shit to attract traffic / improve his pagerank. Better stories are available here [pcmag.com] and elsewhere [engadget.com].

  • by Microlith (54737) on Thursday January 26, 2012 @05:58PM (#38833925)

    The GPLv3 effectively does require that. It bars the use of GPLv3 software in things that require jailbreaking, or otherwise keep the user trapped and unable to rebuild and replace the GPLv3 binaries. Slightly different terminology, but same effect (the anti-TiVOization clause.)

    Having access to tinker and enhance is the reason these devices exist at all.

    Not quite. However, that should be something all users are able to do without interference from the manufacturer.

    Smart vendors would fix their devices to comply. The evil ones would fork the kernel and anything else using the new license, and eventually die off without community support.

    WRT GPLv3, they're already not using the GNU coreutils. And the Linux kernel will never be anything but GPLv2.

    We have the money, and we have the power. Not Hollywood. Hollywood is irrelevant.

    But you don't have someone like Chris Dodd, who can go on Fox News and threaten congressmen for not standing up to the American populace to force bad laws through.

  • by newcastlejon (1483695) on Thursday January 26, 2012 @06:21PM (#38834147)
    Look, I've told you about this before [slashdot.org]. If you're not going to pick a relevant strip please pick a different one; there's even a search [google.com] box provided.
  • Aspire X1 (Score:5, Informative)

    by tepples (727027) <tepples&gmail,com> on Thursday January 26, 2012 @06:22PM (#38834155) Homepage Journal

    Acer makes an open game console. It's called the Aspire X1 [acer.com], it's about the size of an original Xbox 360 and can use its gamepads, and it runs all PC software. And unlike the major consoles, it has multiple app stores: Steam, Impulse, Desura, and GOG. There's even an adapter called the Retrode that lets it play classic games made for the Super NES and Sega Genesis.

    Let's make PCs the fourth console.

  • Re:Who's property (Score:4, Informative)

    by Em Adespoton (792954) <slashdotonly.1.adespoton@spamgourmet.com> on Thursday January 26, 2012 @07:20PM (#38834675) Homepage Journal

    If you buy such a device, it's your property. However, in order to do anything useful, you'll either need to flash the device yourself (this lets you *replace* the software, which is legal), or agree to the software license and then circumvent the software somehow -- and the software does NOT belong to you -- it belongs to the copyright holder, and they let you run it on your device.

    If you can reflash (hardware reflash, not software reflash via the software already provided by the manufacturer) the device and install some other system on it, DMCA isn't broken.

    Kind of like you can buy a car, but circumventing the on-board software is illegal. Same went for buying a printer and hacking the firmware to let you use any printer cartridge, until this got an exemption for compatibility reasons.

  • Re:Who cares (Score:2, Informative)

    by PopeRatzo (965947) * on Thursday January 26, 2012 @08:09PM (#38834997) Homepage Journal

    Imagine if there were *no* laws against copying someone else's work - say anyone could legally copy a studio's movie print and show it in their own theater, or copy DVDs, CDs, or books and sell them in a retail store along side the "official" copies, etc.

    Is that what's happening? Do you see pirated DVDs and CDs on the shelves at Best Buy? Can you tell me which theaters are showing pirated films?

    Why do the apologists for the ridiculous "intellectual property" laws always have to go to imaginary scenarios to try to make their case?

    In the real world, can you provide proof that artists are making less money because of illegal copies than they would have if there had been no illegal copies? Because I can show you the opposite. Yes, I can show you instances of artists who would have made much less money if their work had not been passed around on torrent sites.

    Hell, there are artists who got their start by distributing their work on bittorrent sites. Without that "illegal copying" those artists would never have gotten a record contract.

    So, if you can lay out some evidence that the violation of copyright is actually lessening artists' incomes, then we can talk. Until then, I maintain that the current "intellectual property" laws do more harm than good - for customers and artists alike.

  • Re:Who cares (Score:3, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday January 26, 2012 @08:41PM (#38835225)

    The Galaxy Nexus is pentaband, supporting AWS and "standard" GSM. That just misses wimax and CDMA.

    The Galaxy Nexus doesn't need SIM unlocking.

    The Galaxy Nexus can be "jailbroken" simply by running fastboot oem unlock. No hacks needed, fastboot is a tool provided by Google.

  • Re:Who cares (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday January 26, 2012 @08:54PM (#38835315)

    Is that what's happening? Do you see pirated DVDs and CDs on the shelves at Best Buy? Can you tell me which theaters are showing pirated films?

    No, but that's explicitly BECAUSE there are laws against it. Do you really think they wouldn't do this if they could? Why the hell not?

    You're being incredibly disingenuous here. The GP suggested a likely consequence of removing IP laws, and here you are claiming that the fact that it isn't happening now is somehow evidence that it wouldn't happen if it were legal.

    Hell, there are artists who got their start by distributing their work on bittorrent sites. Without that "illegal copying" those artists would never have gotten a record contract.

    Uh, if the artists were distributing their work themselves then it's not "illegal copying" at all. You're actually making an argument that takes the same hardline premise as the *AA's - that P2P distribution is inherently illegal.

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