iPhone jailbreak now legal
The people who live in the United States of America can now legally jailbreak and unlock their smartphones. Okay? Not really much fuss for most but alas, this includes Apple's iPhone which means Steve Jobs is probably hopping mad this morning.
Basically, the US Copyright Office's Librarian of Congress published exceptions to the Digital Milleneium Copyright Act (DMCA) which not only allows people to unlock their smartphones, but new rules allow people to post snippets of movies online for 'criticism or comment'.
The Reg report: "By granting all of EFF's (Electronic Frontier Foundation) applications, the Copyright Office and Librarian of Congress have taken three important steps today to mitigate some of the harms caused by the DMCA," said EFF Civil Liberties Director Jennifer Granick in a statement. "We are thrilled to have helped free jailbreakers, unlockers and vidders from this law's overbroad reach."
MPAA spokesperson Elizabeth Kaltman told The Reg in an email: "The Librarian's decision unnecessarily blurs the bright line established in the DMCA against circumvention of technical protection measures and undermines the DMCA, which has fostered greater access to more works by more people than at any time in our history."
Apple don't appear to be making a comment.
The EFF have been pushing for this since 2008, arguing that the DMCA unnecessarily infringed upon handset owners' "freedom to tinker" and blocked remix video creators from access to snippets of videos and movies that they wanted to use in creative, commentary-focused, or educational works.
Last year, Apple filed a 27-page document that repeatedly disagreed. They said that a "host of bad consequences that will flow from it". They also spoke of the dangers system instability, product safety, viruses and malware and the inability to update software. Oh, and porn.
EFF's counsel, Fred von Lohmann, countered Apple's argument in part by saying: "I have a Toyota. Toyota would, of course, prefer that I use nothing but authentic Toyota parts and Toyota dealers for service, and that they would also prefer that I not modify my Toyota in ways that might be dangerous to me. I appreciate all that, but it is my automobile at the end of the day."