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Valenti's "Boston Strangler" Testimony 320

Posted by michael
from the hoist-by-own-petard dept.
Seth Schoen writes "'I say to you that the VCR is to the American film producer and the American public as the Boston strangler is to the woman home alone.' Jack Valenti said this in 1982 in testimony to the House of Representatives on why the VCR should be illegal. He also called the VCR an "avalanche" and a "tidal wave", and said it would make the film industry "bleed and bleed and hemorrhage". This speech is an important part of history, yet until today it had never been published on-line in its entirety. Valenti's testimony was published today by Cryptome. It's essential background reading if you want to see just how little the MPAA's arguments have changed in two decades." Compare to the Analog Hole document and they're virtually identical (except Valenti was playing on anti-Japanese sentiment then, and today it's anti-pirate sentiment). Of course, the MPAA was unsuccessful in plugging the "VCR Hole" - insufficient lobbying and clueful judges stopped them. The MPAA successfully adapted to the changing times and today sells about 70 million cassettes for rentals and 600 million cassettes for home viewing every year (both numbers are on the decline due to the rise of DVD).
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Valenti's "Boston Strangler" Testimony

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  • Didn't the record companies say the same thing about audio tape?

    They really would be happy if nobody had computers at all, wouldn't they?
    • They like computers, it's just that they want to control your computer down to the hardware. Fuck them. An industry-wide consortium should not be this one-sided and so blatently against consumer rights.
      • I suspect when they control the hardware (theoretically) and find that the evil pirate thieves still copy their media, they'll declare computers as a technology insecure and unsuitable for people.
        • Their wet dream is to have total media control. Seeing as that will never happen (there will always be people exercising "piracy" (AKA ownership rights to the MPAA) of some form. They realized this during the VHS trials and have now come back with the DMCA in an attempt to force encryption down our throats. It makes me sick that these people can make gazillions of dollars, control the industry with an tight fist concerning what gets pushed to the masses and what gets shitcanned, yet they don't want us to be able to play these movies as we please.
          • Just wait, if they really get what they want you will not have to wait long to hear them crying about how they're not making very much money, and their new totally controlled media isn't selling well.

            This will happen because of the disastorous effects their technology limiting will have on the computer industry. Think about it this way: If the pentium had been declared illegal technogoly and never sold by intel, where would the computer industry be today (hint: you'd be still clinging to your old 386). The argument can be made that intel would have come up with something, but that something would have to live up to the letter of the law, and that would be orders of magnitude more difficult for them, meaning increased lead time to new products (ie. you'd still be clutching your 386 technology). And God forbid they come up with regulations that would not be feasible to implement in new technology and still have the technology be even remotely affordable.

            Don't think regulations can be written like that, well they already have. The FDA's part 11 regulations on electronic records have the distinction of being largely unfeasible, and what is feasible is very expensive.

            Total Media Control == Enourmous Economic Depression
            • you'd still be clutching your 386 technology
              Not a chance.
              Motorola, or even better, MicroVAX.
              Intel has a horrid machine code structure, but has been fast enough and cheap enough to dominate the market. If the Pentium were'nt there, something else would have taken its place and for all I know we'd be better off now.
        • I suspect when they control the hardware (theoretically) and find that the evil pirate thieves still copy their media, they'll declare computers as a technology insecure and unsuitable for people.
          This is probably a goal. Replacing all those general-purpose computers with PS2's and X-boxes would be a corporate wet-dream:

          Fire up Office-Xbox on the console. Modem or broadband connection to MSN (only) checks to see if you paid your monthly license subscription and (if you paid) allows access to the documents stored on an encrypted internal hard disk. At least everyone thinks its encrypted. Built-in tamper switches in the console cause it to "phone home" if opened for law-enforcement action. Feds are also called if it does not make a net connection for monthly license payment. To relieve oneself of this burden/liability, the console needs to be returned to MS for disposal.

          Need to distribute? Send those documents via your Hotmail or MSN (only) account to another Hotmail or MSN address via the new MS-modified TCP/IP protocol (routeable only on MSN, all non-MSN connections must go through MSN gateways). Sneakernet distribution? Save the documents to an encrypted flash memory device.

          Forget to pay via your Passport account, and get locked out of your documents.

          No worries about software piracy, since Office Xbox and every other MS or MS partner offering comes included with the console. Software access is dictated via unalterable serial number in the console that is attached to every thing the computer transmits or creates. This serial number is compared with your account info at MS. Forget to pay, and you cannot read, write, or print your documents. Neither can anyone else for that matter.

          Before things get any worse, the US DOJ wakes from its stupor after letting MS get off scott-free in 2002, and tries to bring MS to court on antitrust and racketeering charges. MS responds by pointing out that it is within MS' rights to terminate licenses for any reason and deactivates all government-owned X-boxes essentially crippling the government. Access is restored when Gates is declared president-for-life.

      • A "computer" that is totally controlled down to the hardware by some media outlet is not a computer. It's a television.

        So I agree with the first guy: they don't like computers.

    • by K8Fan (37875) on Friday May 31, 2002 @04:32PM (#3619423) Journal
      Didn't the record companies say the same thing about audio tape?

      Audio tape? Hell, they said the same thing about radio, and sued to stop radio broadcasters.

      The said the same thing about imported LPs, DAT, used CDs, anything they could find to lay blame on to explain a temporary downturn in revenue. Increases in revenue are, of course, entirely due to their own brilliance.

      This is about what it always about - the lobbyist's desire to get the government to give their industry a handout. They used the introduction of DAT to get a tax passed on the units and blank tapes. As musicians and Deadheads are virtually the only people who buy DATs (other than data DATS for backup), they have been paying a tax that it delivered directly to the members of the RIAA.

      Forget welfare to the poor. It is dwarfed by Corporate Welfare.

      • Forget welfare to the poor. It is dwarfed by Corporate Welfare.

        If I had an army of lobbyists, I'm sure I could get my own personal law passed at this point in America. Can we just get it over with and have a revolution now so we can have these guys up against the wall there they belong?
    • They really would be happy if nobody had computers at all, wouldn't they?
      Of course not. If programmed "properly", computers could give them total control over the user. If they what to change per-view - they could just add a tag to the film/song/whatever, and the "approved" software would transfer money from the user's account. They could go as far as to charge different price in different locales. Say, people in New York City would pay more than people in rural Idaho. Moreover, they could give you rebate for watching ads.

      They can make more money by exploiting our computers. That's why they want "certified" systems - to control what the computer users can do with the equipment they (the users) paid for.

  • by Anonymous Coward
    ... this CNN article [cnn.com] about a CD topping the charts despite "rampant piracy"
    • Heh interesting day for me. Not only is today my birthday, but this is also my 1000th post! heh.

      Okay, back to the topic: There's an interesting factor in this particular story that may still be a bit of a wildcard: The CD came with a DVD featuring interviews with Eminem.

      I'm reasonably sure that most people who downloaded the MP3s didn't have the DVD, so there was quite a bit of extra value in buying the album. Is this the reason that people bought the CD after downloading it? That's not clear. But it does prove a point I tried to make a few months ago about what the music industry should be doing: increasing the value of CD purchases.

      The problem with the RIAA is that they're selling a product that is far too easy to duplicate. Even if they get prevent computers from copying the CD, there are still people that could simply re-sing the song and make that available. I realize the song won't be the same, however the point I'm making is that there is literally no way to prevent a song from getting distributed in one form or another. (Hell, I can imagine people developing a taste for midi if they need to...)

      The label was smart in adding the DVD to the CD. This made MP3 sharing into more of a marketing tool. "hey, you like the songs? Check this out: Buy the disc now and you get a DVD with it too!" If I were an Eminem fan, I really think I would have forgone my RIAA boycott and bought that album because of that.

      Hopefully they'll learn one day that people downloading MP3s can be tapped as an honest revenue stream.
    • Of course. If the album had bombed, it wouldn't have been because eminem has exceeded his 15 minutes, or because the album sucked, or anything other than "those nasty pirate theives."

      Now that it succeeded, it obviously did so because it's such a brilliant album by such a talented artist and only "those damn nasty pirate theives" kept it from being more popular than it was. Despite the fact that it's an amazing success by any standard.

      That's pretty creative, any poor-selling products aren't the fault of the artist or the label, and of course, any success is obviously because of their talent and brilliant minds.
  • by 0WaitState (231806) on Friday May 31, 2002 @04:16PM (#3619330)
    Quick! Pirate that testimony! Put it on a tshirt! Set it to music, dictate it and sample it!
  • And Now (Score:3, Insightful)

    by ipxodi (156633) on Friday May 31, 2002 @04:17PM (#3619335) Homepage
    And now the industry makes more money on video rentals than on the theatrical release.
    Kind of amazing that they are lobbying so hard against DVD and electronic distribution when any sane person can see the amazing profit potential on the horizon.
    Valenti's a nitwit.
    • Moreover, they release the movie in theaters then rent and sell video afterward. Many people see the movie in the theater and then buy a copy. This allows the movie industry to get a double whammy.

      Old movies can be more easily viewed by future generations as well. How many kids watched Star Wars for the first time on video cause they were not alive back in 1976 when it was in theaters? Disney gets to recycle their animated classics every few years when a new generation reaches prime viewing age. Video allowed a large library to be available to the public, which can not be done through traditional theaters.

      I must add that Valenti is an overpaid moron.

  • Mirror here (Score:2, Informative)

    by medscaper (238068)
    http://12.225.182.52/valenti_mirror.htm
  • by Trinity-Infinity (91335) on Friday May 31, 2002 @04:20PM (#3619359) Homepage
    Even in 1982!

    Quote from the article:
    "And I think that if a film is marginal, it needs those extra categories to get in. It needs that home box office. It needs that cassette sale to get out of the red or maybe even right up to network television sale. Maybe that is the thing that pushes it into the black. It is very simple. The more films that are in the black, the more films are made, the more men and women are employed by the film industry. "

    Yup. Some things produced are so marginal they need every avenue available to them to make their money, but what does the RIAA/MPAA want to do? strangle it with licensing fees... bah, humbug!
  • by L. VeGas (580015) on Friday May 31, 2002 @04:24PM (#3619376) Homepage Journal
    Valenti -- "Now, they are up to 6 hours. They are going to be up to 24 hours. Pretty soon, they will have a cassette that will record all year long"

    And it only takes 2 days to rewind.
  • by davmct (195217) on Friday May 31, 2002 @04:26PM (#3619387)
    the relative ease to which you can now transfer content between people. Sure, you could make VHS copies of movies in your basement, but you were still limited to physical distribution. Now that distribution is effectively uncapped, the MPAA and RIAA realize their nest eggs are being poached.
    The biggest problem with all of this is the lack of concern of the RIAA/MPAA towards their customers. Sure, you will always have a few people hacking and stealing content, but if the movie/music industry realized that the standard of economy is based on the supply/demand chain, they would realize a better way to combat this 'theft'.

    I, myself, am an avid DVD-collector, and have quite a repository built. I have no qualms with paying good money to buy a good movie. But what I do expect is for the MPAA to be competitive. Since there are no other options THAN the MPAA, we are all held up to paying 20-35$ for a DVD, which in all reality may only be worth 15-20$. What the MPAA must realize is that their competition is now the free route, and the only way to combat this is to
    a) lower prices
    b) provide extras to create a competitive advantage

    I'd surely shell out 14 bucks to watch AoTC on a big screen over having to watch a pirated version that shakes like a hyperactive child sucking on a lollipop. Sure, there will be the cheapskates that will watch it for free, but those were never really customers of the MPAA anyway.
    The MPAA needs to get back to the business of making movies, and distributing the "extras" that make it worthwhile buying.
    • So if the VCR is the Boston Strangler, then internet pirates are 20 million thuggees prowling the streets of America?
    • Home DVD Players do not come with recorders... that is still down the road somewhere (maybe). And most people are too stupid to record VCDs or copy a DVD. Trading DVDs over the Internet is so rare that I have yet to see an unbiased news source even report on it.

      Sure I'll let people borrow a DVD from my collection, but the fact of the matter is that we don't need new laws just to enforce new technology, the old ones (pre-DMCA) still work and these guys should be happy with the billions they already have.
    • But what I do expect is for the MPAA to be competitive. Since there are no other options THAN the MPAA, we are all held up to paying 20-35$ for a DVD, which in all reality may only be worth 15-20$.

      But there are alternatives to the MPAA. Not every disk for sale in this country is made by a MPAA member. As people point out routinely in the standard "If /. is so anti-MPAA, why do they get so hyped about Anime DVDs" arguments, most of the small Anime distributors are not MPAA members. Not surprisingly, many of their disks are comparatively cheap, too. Most porn isn't produced by the MPAA, either.

      Even a lot of the MPAA-produced disks are pretty reasonable. If you look at older disks and older movies, you can frequently find things in the $10 range- even though they're big studio movies. This is what is always going to happen with products like computer games, DVDs, etc. where the initial cost is high but the unit cost is low. Prices are highest when the product is newly released, to capture as much money as possible from people willing to pay a premium for the newest thing. When the freshness wears off, the prices drop to try to get something from the people who aren't willing to pay that much.

      • When the freshness wears off, the prices drop to try to get something from the people who aren't willing to pay that much.

        No, prices really drop to clear out the inventory. The publishers of music, movies, and video games don't want you to buy old stuff; they want you to buy their more expensive new stuff. Witness the movie companies (especially DisneyCo) pulling old videos from store shelves and lobbying for copyright term extensions [everything2.com] to thwart the preservation of classic films.

        • There's clearly more than one dynamic at work in the price drops. If the goal were simply to clear out old inventory, you wouldn't see some of the strategies that are actually used. In computer games, for instance, it's common to take an older title, repackage it in the cheapest possible packaging (like just a CD, with all manuals in electronic format), and sell it for a steep discount. Or sometimes game sellers will package several games that previously sold separately in a single package- or even on a single CD- for much less than the price of the games separately. That doesn't make sense as part of inventory reduction, since it involves pressing new disks and making new packaging, but does make sense if the goal is to get money from people unwilling or unable to pay for the latest, greatest games.

          Selling boxed sets of CDs or DVDs is pretty much the same thing. A seller will first sell the disks separately. After a some time, they'll see sales dropping and will repackage the individual disks into a single boxed set that's cheaper than buying the disks separately. You'll see this all the time with anime DVDs. A series will be released first as individual disks. About a year after the last disk in the series comes out, they'll come out with a boxed set containing the whole series (or one season, for really long series) that sells for 30-50% less than the individual disks. Those boxed sets keep selling for a long time, so you know it's not just to clear out old inventory. It's because they know that the real fanatics have already bought the thing, and now they can only get money from other people by lowering the price.

    • Here is one huge difference between the MPAA and the RIAA. The RIAA is kind of shooting in the dark when they release CDs, at least in theory. They don't know whether or not a CD will sell enough to make back the money they have put up front for it. However, the MPAA releases movies that have already been out in the marketplace. Their production costs are merely putting the movie on digital format, and creating the extras for the DVD. They pretty much already KNOW that a movie like Shrek or Toy Story will sell well on "home video", they have already established that the market is there because the movie was so popular in the theatres. Even movies that tank in the theatres may do OK out on DVD. So they pretty much make money on every DVD they release. This isn't the case with the music industry.

      But, with file sharing, the word can get out about upcoming albums. Eminem's album is a perfect example. It jumped to number one, even though it had been available on the net and street corners. Why did it go to #1? Maybe because they said "hey, let's give the buying public a little something extra." Or maybe because enough people heard a few songs from it on the net, and wanted to go buy the album ANYWAY.

      I sure hope some lawyer is keeping track of all of this.

    • by gblues (90260) on Friday May 31, 2002 @05:04PM (#3619592)
      the relative ease to which you can now transfer content between people. Sure, you could make VHS copies of movies in your basement, but you were still limited to physical distribution. Now that distribution is effectively uncapped, the MPAA and RIAA realize their nest eggs are being poached.
      Bullshit.

      The "unlimited distribution" myth has been repeated by everyone from New Economists to Technologists to lawmakers. But, no amount of repetition makes it any more true.

      Distribution on the Internet is not an economy of scale. In fact, it is exactly the opposite! With economies of scale, the cost of production approach zero with an increase of output--e.g. it costs less to produce 10,000 than it does 100.

      The Internet does not work this way. As your production levels increase, production costs go up--often logarithmically. In other words, it costs many times more to distribute 100GB per month than it does to distribute 10GB per month.

      What about peer-to-peer, you ask? Peer-to-peer networks rely on the uneconomical nature of high-speed Internet. This market is beginning to correct itself as the ISPs cap the bandwith of bandwidth hogs. Eventually, the peer-to-peer networks will be the proverbial victims of their own success. People will stop using them when the ISP bill runs into the triple digits.

      Therefore, even if DVD were completely unencrypted, it would be more expensive to download the 13+GB DVD than it would to simply travel to your local video store and purchase a legal copy.

      In fact, if you factor in the time it takes to download the rips/theater screeners, it is already more expensive. However, expect the implicit cost to transform into explicit costs (in terms of higher ISP bills) in the near future.

      Nathan

      • With economies of scale, the cost of production approach zero with an increase of output--e.g. it costs less to produce 10,000 than it does 100.

        Not exactly. Economies of scale generally decrease the unit cost of production. Producing 10,000 units probably doesn't cost less than 100, but each individual unit does cost less at the higher volume.

        In other words, it costs many times more to distribute 100GB per month than it does to distribute 10GB per month.

        Again, just like conventional economies of scale, 100GB may cost more per month in total, but the higher volume will likely cost less per GB than the lower volume. Even this may be debatable though (as another reply pointed out) depending on the mix between upfront capital costs and ongoing service costs. Also you'll probably see some significant step costs - e.g., 100GB might cost the same as 10GB while 101GB might be twice as much (in total, but probably still much less per unit). I doubt that these kind of "logarithmic" increases would hold true when averaged over the whole curve.

        Eventually, the peer-to-peer networks will be the proverbial victims of their own success. People will stop using them when the ISP bill runs into the triple digits.

        ...expect the implicit cost to transform into explicit costs (in terms of higher ISP bills) in the near future.

        You are right that the dynamics are more complex than the simple "unlimited distribution" theory, and that some costs will undoubtably shift from one place to another. However, there are definitely huge advantages and cost savings related to digital media and internet distribution and the middle men will have to adapt or die...
      • Bullshit.

        Don't be so hard on him. After all, it was you who mixed up a) physical distribution with b) distribution and then somehow amazingly got them both confused with c) distribution cost which you in turn mistook to mean d) distribution cost per unit.

        In summary, while you may have refuted a most confused claim that noone ever made, it was perhaps unnecessary to begin your analysis with "Bullshit." in bold. Apart from that, I applaud your insightful, albeit irrelevant and incoherent, rebuttal of some argument you picked up at, uh, New Economist?

        Come to think of it, you probably misunderstood what they said too.

  • by Asikaa (207070) on Friday May 31, 2002 @04:27PM (#3619388) Homepage
    I'd love to know if Kastenmeier's response was as sarcastic as it sounded here:

    [VALENTI:] I am going to stand, if you don't mind, Mr. Chairman, cause I have what is known as "visual aids." I know they are visual; whether they are aids or not is something you will have to determine later on.

    Mr. KASTENMEIER. And whether they are copyrighted or not.

    That is priceless, and Valenti just ignores him and presses on as if nothing happened!

    • I also wondered if Railsback was being sarcastic here:

      Mr. KASTENMEIER. I compliment you on your presentation, Jack. Actually, even though you are not a lawyer, you didn't seem the least bit uncomfortable.

      Mr. RAILSBACK. He really sounds like a lawyer.

  • by jamieo (22197) on Friday May 31, 2002 @04:27PM (#3619391) Homepage
    The media industry (music and film) are so stangnent it's unbelievable.

    MP3 and digital music was (actually still is) a chance for them to make lots of money in new ways.

    The same goes for digital TV/films, yet they can't see it. I actually worked in Digital TV a while and I don't have any faith in these companies being able to pull off anything worthwhile for the public due to the anal retentives in the media industry.

    PVRs are great - the public love them. However, they're by no means the statan to media companies. PVRs will change, allowing targeted programming, targetted adverts, pay per view, etc. Nerds will hate it (I do), but it will happen.

    But that's only the start. PVRs are not long for this world, as a set top box anyway. The future will be PVRs in the network - no set top box, no limited 40Gb storage - it will all work in the back end for you. Not only will this offer PVR like functionality but it will bring the reality of video on demand and targeted programming to the masses.

    When this happens, the big media companies will be able to make more money from it than they can from their current distribution systems.

    If they kill this, their only hope is DVD and then they're opening themselves up to far more piracy.

    Personally, I hope all such companies burn in hell, but realistically they'll survive and continue to screw me over with content I don't want. Hopefully the digital revolution will give me a *bit* more choice.
  • Some one should mass mail Valenti with copies of his 1982 speech, along with some fresh batteries for his clue meter . . .
  • After Slashdot reported "(both numbers are on the decline due to the rise of DVD)"

    The MPAA is demanding DVDs be outlawed.

    Valanti said "We need to create a seamless front against the flood of DVDs that create declining movie ticket and video sales."
  • the more and more history i learn, the less i trust everyone. after hearing about The Technology Gap (the bleeding-heart term for computer haves/have nots), I stumbled across something called The Space Gap, which was the argument in the 60's for the Moon landing. If we don't land on the Moon first, the Russians will, and then they'll set up bases and a space army and take over the universe, etc.

    special interest groups have been using 'Gap's and 'Hole's and assorted other capitalized terms as their rallying cry for all eternity and so far I have yet to hear of one that was 1/10th as important as they were made out to be.

    i'm not telling anyone what to think, but I am personally very skeptical of this kind of argument
  • It's pretty disgusting just how heavily he engages in flag waving and emotional appeals rather than any factual evidence. His testimony starts out with a wonderful:

    I am merely coming to start off by talking about the American film and television industry, not as an economic enterprise, but as a great national asset to this country, to the U.S. Treasury and the strength of the American dollar.

    Excuse me, but isn't it's standing as an asset to the country, to the U.S. Treasury, and the strength of the American dollar because it's an economic enterprise? What a load of overinflated hype. (Not that overinflated hype should be a surprise coming from Hollywood.) The whole rest of his testimony is full of Japan bashing, plain and simple. The issue that he raises is not just that this will hurt the industry, but that it will (gasp) send good American jobs to Japan. When logic fails, I guess you just wrap yourself in the flag and see if that works.

  • by TrumpetPower! (190615) <ben@trumpetpower.com> on Friday May 31, 2002 @04:33PM (#3619430) Homepage

    I found this exchange fascinating:

    The average number of cassettes per household -- this is fascinating -- Mrs. Schroeder, was 27.7, 28 cassettes. Now, if you are just time shifting, all you are doing is you are away from home and you are taping something and you come back and you watch the commercial, then you time shift, you don't need 28 cassettes. You need one cassette or at the most two. Why do you have 28? Why? Because of the next line. Seventy-five percent have a permanent collection. My own home, we do it in our on home. I know about that. Anybody that has a VCR, talk to them, and I ask you to use your own commonsense, Mr. Chairman, Mrs. Schroeder, Mr. Railsback, just think of you as human beings. If you had the power to sit on a playback of a recording and you could wipe out the commercials or not wipe out the commercials, what would you do? You would do exactly what you said, sir. That is terrific. Of course. We all do it.

    But when you do it, you strip away the reason for free television. Now, let me --

    Mr. KASTENMEIER. Jack, let me ask you. Do you consider yourself and your family infringers when you engage in that practice?

    Mr. VALENTI. I consider myself and my family believing what the plaintiffs in this lawsuit said and they said publicly, they have said it to the press, they have said it to the lawyers, they have said it to the courts. They do not intend to file any actions against homeowners now or in the future. I mean, that is obvious and they have said that publicly, Mr. Chairman, so I believe them. As far as I am concerned, I am going to continue taping because the plaintiffs have said they aren't going to do anything to me. I am not committing any crime. They know that.

    Mr. KASTENMEIER. That wasn't my question.

    Mr. VALENTI. Do I consider myself an infringer?

    Mr. KASTENMEIER. When you engage in such practice.

    Mr. VALENTI. Yes, sir, I do. I am taking somebody else's copyrighted material without their consent and I know damn well I am infringing. But as far as court action or anything else, I am safe. First, it is not a criminal act. Again, the opposition would tell you video, police, and criminals. They show an astonishing lack of the copyright law. They know good and well that that is not a criminal infringement unless you do it for profit. But on the other hand the plaintiffs have said they are moving against anybody in the homes. There is no problem, but 1 know and everybody else knows they are infringing.

    I'm not one who participates in copyright infringment, even with the strict standards imposed by recent changes to the law. Mr. Valenti's testimony, however, has completely changed my opinion on whether or not it is right for me (y'all are welcome to do as you wish, I'm talking about me) to engage in such practices. What's good for the goose, and all.

    I think I'll go download something right now....

    b&

    • I think I'll go download something right now....

      Just don't upload. Distribution of more than $1000 worth of material (and with RIAA definitions I'm sure that means 2 CDs) is a criminal offense.

    • But when you do it, you strip away the reason for free television. Now, let me --

      OK, guess what. I don't have free television. I pay for cable. Since my revenue pays the bills, not the advertisers, I now have the right to skip ads? Or do I have to watch the adds and pay for something thats supposedly free?

  • I have to admit, I didn't read the whole thing. I'm lazy, it's long. But, I can see right now that access is going to result in this testimony being used in a lot of what historians call 'secondary' sources.

    Newspapers love these quotes like "property that we exhibit in theaters... is going to be so eroded in value by the use of these unlicensed machines, that the whole valuable asset is going to be blighted."

    And I definitely see something like "Unlicenced Machines: Comparing Anti-VCR and Anti-PC Arguments from the Film Industry" being accepted at an undergrad research conference.

    This means more people hear about, (hopefully) more people think about, and more people tell others about these nonsense arguments.

  • 'I say to you that the VCR is to the American film producer and the American public as the Boston strangler is to the woman home alone

    I smell a T-shirt opportunity. Err, maybe after it got dirty, then I would smell it. God that was lame. Anyway, seriously, someone with some more motivation then me, make that or another comment from his statement into a .jpg/.png/.bmp whatever image and go to cafepress.com and get to selling. I might buy one.
  • by JoeWalsh (32530) on Friday May 31, 2002 @04:36PM (#3619451)
    Thank goodness this testimony became available. Through it, Jack Valenti was finally able to set me straight. Here's one of the truly remarkable things he said:

    "I have spent most of my adult life in politics and you learn one thing. Nothing of value is free. "

    Now I know I should erase Linux and FreeBSD from my company's servers and install Windows. Because, obviously, if I got something for free, it's worthless. And how can you base a business on something that's worthless?

    Thank goodness he set me free. Amazing how prescient he proved to be way back in the early eighties.

    Thanks, Jack!

    -Joe
    • Linux isnt free. It cost the developers quite a bit of time and effort (Which both mean money) in development. They have chosen to donate their work to the collective. YOU are supposed to be contributing your own time and effort as well to improve the product. (There again, not free). If you are not, then you are just freeloading. (On the other ahnd, maybe you are contributing your adoration, which strokes the developers ego instead of their pocketbook)
      • From what I understand, you're under no obligation to provide anything to the distributors of free software, just as they're not under obligation to continue developing it. Saying that someone just using free software is a freeloader because they don't devote any time or money to its continued development is two-faced. There's a term for software that's distributed freely and yet expects a return and it's Shareware.

        The software the poster mentions is free. There may be some license out there that mandates that anyone who uses the software must contribute back to the project, but that sounds pretty close to not-free to me.

        Linux is free, the GPLed software is generally free, copy-lefted things are really free. Free in the sense meant in the quote, in that they dont cost the user anything monetarily.

        Sweat
    • "Linux is only free if your time has no value." JWZ [jwz.org]

    • Wasn't it Heinlein that wrote "mankind will not be mature until it can accept a valueable gift, and treasure it."
  • Terms, Terms, Terms (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Bouncings (55215) <ken@@@kenkinder...com> on Friday May 31, 2002 @04:38PM (#3619462) Homepage
    First of all, I think we need to make something clear. One thing that often decides debates is language. Any side of a debate adopts a language all its own. "Pro-life" vs "pro-choice"; "illegal immigrants" vs "undocumented immigrants," etc. The similarity between the Analog Hole article, this testomony, and the wording in the rest of the Hollywood argument is establishing a general-purpose set of words for the MPAA to use.

    The time has come for advocates of general purpose tools to adopt some words. "General purpose" I like, but it could be better. Suggestions? Some more ideas, but please, come up with more, everyone:

    • 'Piracy' -- Copyright infringement is called just that, 'copyright infringement.' I suggest you stop someone when they use the word 'piracy' and ask them what boats on what ocean they are talking about. "Piracy" has no legal meaning and it only exists because 'copyright infringement' doesn't sound as bad. It's hard to argue with this fact.
    • Spyware is an excellent word to use for DivX and Kazaa kind of cases. It's not directly related to this debate as much, but it's an excellent example of choosing your own vocabulary.
    • I think we should call programs that play DVD's but don't copy them 'crippleware' or 'defective' -- the MPAA calls them 'secure' -- I call them 'defective.' Even better, let's call anything related to copy restriction 'defective.'
    • When speaking specifically, don't use the word 'protection', use the word 'restricted.' Everyone wants a 'protected' computer, no one wants a 'restricted' computer.
    • 'Circumvention devices' is OK. But how about 'repair' devices that fix things like defective CDs. Or maybe 'full use' -- the DeCSS is a 'full use' device, in that it gives you full use of your computer.
    Think of some good terms, everyone.
    • by bay43270 (267213)
      I think we should call programs that play DVD's but don't copy them 'crippleware' or 'defective' -- the MPAA calls them 'secure' -- I call them 'defective.' Even better, let's call anything related to copy restriction 'defective.' Defective implies an accident. CDs that can't be copied because of their extra data track were intentionally manufactured to be non-standard. I think a better word is "impaired". It shows intention.
    • by Anonymous Coward
      "Content Industry" is really the "Copyright Industry."

      They don't produce content at all, that's what the bands and authors and actors do. All these guys do is milk the artificial restrictions that copyright imposes on distribution.
    • Arguing (Score:3, Informative)

      by SeanAhern (25764)
      'Piracy' -- Copyright infringement is called just that, 'copyright infringement.' I suggest you stop someone when they use the word 'piracy' and ask them what boats on what ocean they are talking about. "Piracy" has no legal meaning and it only exists because 'copyright infringement' doesn't sound as bad. It's hard to argue with this fact.

      Okay, I'll play the devil's advocate and argue with the "fact."

      According to The Merriam-Webster Dictionary [m-w.com], "piracy" has the following definition (emphasis mine):

      Main Entry: piracy
      Function: noun
      Etymology: Medieval Latin piratia, from Late Greek peirateia, from Greek peiratEs pirate
      Date: 1537
      1 : an act of robbery on the high seas; also : an act resembling such robbery
      2 : robbery on the high seas
      3 : the unauthorized use of another's production, invention, or conception especially in infringement of a copyright
    • You mean, like Errol Flynn?
      (Of "In like Flynn" fame)
  • Wolf! (Score:4, Insightful)

    by cybermage (112274) on Friday May 31, 2002 @04:41PM (#3619476) Homepage Journal
    Looks like the MPAA has turned into the boy who cried wolf. With any luck, a pattern of resisting technological innovation will ultimately serve to discredit them in the eyes of law makers.

    Both the MPAA and RIAA have resisted new technologies, like analog tape. In the past they were ultimately told to shut up and deal with it. Once they embraced the new technology, they found new markets.

    Now the battleground is digital movies. I'm confident that the industry will eventually be put in their place, and then we'll see what innovations follow. Maybe in a decade, movies will be released straight to home theatre. Perhaps we'll see an immersion style of theatre where you can watch the movie from within it, or even participate.

    I wish the industry would learn from their past and maybe try to be the ones innovating instead of the ones whining. They'd make more money dragging us into the future than the other way around.
    • One can hope. They seem good at hysteria, but the analogies need some work.

      "'I say to you that the VCR is to the American film producer and the American public as the Boston strangler is to the woman home alone.'"

      Most women in Boston at the time were probably afraid of the Boston Strangler. Most women have some level of fear of the crimes perpetrated against women. But, crime against women has such a long history of being over hyped (look out for the darkie, he'll get your white women... FBI crime statistics keep showing a decrease compared to media coverage.... don't go out alone after dark by yourself, when you're more likely to get raped by an acquaintance than a stranger, etc.). The point is, the Boston Strangler was very threatening, but unlikely to have a direct affect on the well-being of probably close to all the women in Boston. (I will admit at this time I'm not particularly familiar with the case, so I'm thinking any mass murderer in general). Therefore, if the VCR was like the Boston Strangler, well even if this is a poorly chosen metaphor the VCR would perhaps pick off a proportionally few movie producers, but not have much impact on the population as a whole, except cause some worry that will most likely come to naught.
  • I'm editing this a bit, but I'm keeping the main thoughts in tact. It's incredible when someone admits to doing what they're trying to get something banned. This would be like Jerry Falwell testifying, "Yes, I watch porn, cause you guys haven't banned it yet!"

    Valenti If you had the power to sit on a playback of a recording and you could wipe out the commercials or not wipe out the commercials, what would you do? You would do exactly what you said, sir. That is terrific. Of course. We all do it. But when you do it, you strip away the reason for free television. Now, let me --

    Kastermeier. Jack, let me ask you. Do you consider yourself and your family infringers when you engage in that practice?

    [...snip...]

    Valenti. Do I consider myself an infringer?

    Kastermeier. When you engage in such practice.

    Valenti. Yes, sir, I do. I am taking somebody else's copyrighted material without their consent and I know damn well I am infringing.

    • Yep. He's trying to make the people serve the economy via laws, not the economy serve the people via laws. We've come pretty far, only to have it completely backwards.
  • by bgs006 (182777) on Friday May 31, 2002 @04:51PM (#3619524)
    "The earth is undoubtedly flat." --Valenti talking to the Queen in the early `1400's

    "Television is never going to be successful."--Valenti talking to himself in front of a bathroom mirror in 1919

    "I haven't had an erection in 12 years."--Valenti talking to his wife in 2001.

    -bgs006
    Find Valenti and other societal rejects at inmates.com. [lostbrain.com]
    • > "Television is never going to be successful."--Valenti talking to himself in front of a bathroom mirror in 1919
      >
      > I haven't had an erection in 12 years."--Valenti talking to his wife in 2001.

      You sure that last quote wasn't also from 1919?

  • by irix (22687) on Friday May 31, 2002 @04:52PM (#3619527) Journal

    I found it fascinating that not only the MPAA (Valenti) was testifying. The national association of theatre owners, the actors guild, people from television, actors, etc. etc. All against the VCR, and all so set in their ways that they couldn't see the forest for the trees.

  • About Valenti (Score:4, Interesting)

    by WEFUNK (471506) on Friday May 31, 2002 @04:52PM (#3619528) Homepage
    This is actually kinda sad...

    This repeat of history made me wonder about the story behind Jack Valenti. According to the MPAA [mpaa.org] web site, Jack [mpaa.org] is (or was) actually a truly remarkable man. He was a war hero and had an impressive career before becoming only the third President of the MPAA. Unfortunately that happened back in 1966. This is often the problem with having one person in power for so long.

    The MPAA site seems to be as much about him as it is about the industry, with the press release page actually titled "Jack [mpaa.org]". The funniest thing is from this intro to his bio [my emphasis]:

    "In his current role as President and Chief Executive Officer of the Motion Picture Association of America, Valenti has presided over a world wide sea change in the industry. New magical technology, the rise of importance of international markets, the tyranny of piracy have radically changed the landscape of the American film and television industry."

    ACC quotes aside, technology does not equal magic. Jack, thanks, I'm sure that at one time you did a real bang up job but please step aside for someone who can understand and appreciate the direction and impact of new technology on our culture, and perhaps someone who's bio starts off with an appreciation of the majesty of the film industry, rather than fear mongering about issues you clearly can't handle.
    • From that page...

      In 1955 he met the man who would have the largest impact on his life, the then Majority Leader of the U.S. Senate, Lyndon B. Johnson. Valenti's agency was in charge of the press during the visit of President Kennedy and Vice President Johnson to Texas. Valenti was in the motorcade in Dallas on November 22, 1963. Within hours of the murder of John F. Kennedy, Valenti was on Air Force One flying back to Washington, the first newly hired special assistant to the new President.

      Indeed, Valenti was present during the swearing in of Johnson after Kennedy was shot.

      In the famous picture [guterman.net] of his being sworn in, you can see Valenti on the left side of the frame.

      (bigger picture here [yale.edu])

      W

  • by ryanvm (247662) on Friday May 31, 2002 @04:57PM (#3619559)
    I'll bet real pirates are pissed that their image has been hijacked for the sake of copyright protection.

    Pirates used to be swarthy, maruading, swashbucklers, living adventurously on the high seas. Now the term has been relegated to the description of pimply-faced, 16 year-old, recluses, downloading techno MP3s in the middle of the night.

    The whole ordeal must be quite disheartening for them.
    • Hacker wern't always people tinkering with technology...

      From Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913) :

      Hacker \Hack"er\, n.
      One who, or that which, hacks. Specifically: A cutting instrument for making notches; esp., one used for notching pine trees in collecting turpentine; a hack.

      I wonder if they got pissed when somebody took their word

  • I'm really glad that this article was posted. My internal timer for Slashdot moods was messed up. Now I can reset it...

    This is the start of the week where we hate the MPAA because they have evil tactics, grossly mis-represent prices, and want to ruin Fair Use rights by things like the DMCA, DeCSS censorship, etc.

    But this passed week, we liked the MPAA by writing about how great Attack of the Clones is, arguments over Spider-man and AotC were different, who "won" that battle, and about the Lord of the Rings DVD coming out.

    Great. Now I can continue to be part of the groupthink of Slashdot. And here I was, just about to submit an article about how great the MPAA is... Sweet God, can you imagine the trouble it might have caused?

    How do you spell "Hypocrite"? S-L-A-S-H-D-O-T.

  • hold on, first off let me say that i detest the tactics that the MPAA and RIAA implement to 'defend' their artists.

    however, in their defense let me say this:
    there is a big difference between cassettes and CDs. there is a big difference between VHS tapes and DVDs.

    the difference is the transfer quality when duplicating. when you duplicate an original VHS tape, each recording has 'lost' just a little bit of quality. so, when you make copies from copies, it gets worse and so on; same with cassettes.

    however, with DVDs and CDs, you can make copies from copies from copies with no degradation. this is what scares the holy hell out of the RIAA and MPAA.

    but, you know what? i hate the RIAA and MPAA amd they can eat out of my butt.
  • The only problem with the argument that Valenti and the MPAA are crying wolf again is that, eventually the boy cries wolf and there really is a wolf.

    So if we want to refute them in this way, one also has to ask, is there really a wolf this time?

    So, basically this all means two things as I see it:

    1) Don't listen to a think Valenti says.
    2) Keep looking for wolves anyway.
  • Coincidentally, there was an article on the front page of the Business section of the San Jose Mercury today, where Valenti was spreading FUD about online piracy hurting movie sales.

    Online film piracy cuts into industry profit [bayarea.com]

    I am not sure why, but to illustrate this problem, they used two huge blockbuster movies, which are setting records for revenue, SpiderMan, and Attack of the Clones.

    The article quotes from our favorite superhero, in his typically understated manner:

    ``It's getting clear -- alarmingly clear, I might add -- that we are in the midst of the possibility of Armageddon,'' said Jack Valenti, president and chief executive of the Motion Picture Association of America.

    This guy has been meddling in politics since LBJ was in office. His view of technology has obviously not changed since that time.
  • by sudog (101964) on Friday May 31, 2002 @06:01PM (#3619910) Homepage
    ...technology into each and every consumer-grade VCR out there. It's called Macrovision people. When was the last time you tried to record a video cassette (that you bloody well BOUGHT, no less) onto a temporary copy so you could better preserve the original in an archive?

    Uh huh. Thought so.

    They just want to do the same thing to digital devices. It's just proving a lot harder to do. But for all your belly-aching and all your complaining about how information wants to be free, digital devices are too uncontrollable, too hackable, to maintain the threshold of expertise required to bypass them. (Witness DeCSS and descendants!)

    Not everyone can double-click and magically cause a de-macrovision device to pop up so they can record from one VCR to another. They have to either fork out $$ to buy a device, or be advanced enough with analog devices and time-signals to build one themselves. Macrovision turned out to be an extremely effective form of copy protection. Unfortunately broadcast signals are so full of ads and trimmed to fit the schedules of the networks that there's not much point in using them as an alternative. Broadcast is not on-demand programming.

    Now, anyone can rip and re-encode a DVD. Just go to http://www.doom9.net, it's all right there.

    You're insane if you expect to come out of this with devices that are clean from the touch of the MPAA. But the fact that you're fighting for that means that the MPAA won't get away with true murder--just a relatively minor assault. The more outfield you go, the further towards your position the compromise will be.
  • We have to buy him a bandanna, an eyepatch, a hook, a cutlass, a parrot for his shoulder, a striped shirt and some black pants and boots. After all,

    JACK VALENTI IS A FUCKING PIRATE

    Jack Sez: I am taking somebody else's copyrighted material without their consent and I know damn well I am infringing.

    So here's what you need to do:

    STOP GIVING MONEY TO THE COPYRIGHT INDUSTRY

    DO NOT STEAL THEIR STUFF EVEN IF THEY'RE A BUNCH OF HYPOCRITES!!!

    Then donate money to people who can help and give money to politicians who might be supportive and write to your politicians once in a while. (Write in a nice way). You can actually be better than JACK! He's a fucking pirate! You don't have to be one! But don't support him either! And most of all

    Don't do what he did. You can't win by lowering yourself to their level!

    He's a pirate. Don't be like him. But don't give him any money either! He'll just use it to break copyright laws. :P
  • American film and television industry, not as an economic enterprise, but as a great national asset to this country
    No. It is an economic enterprise. Sorry to burst your bubble. But, you make money therfore, economic enterprise.


    it is going to be so eroded in value by the use of these unlicensed machines
    It's not your job to make machines. If you want to make VCR's go ahead. No one will buy them.


    If what you own cannot be protected, you own nothing.
    Wow... I agree with him. This a very strong foundation of any form of economic growth in long-run theories. But, you do already own it. If you enforce your ownership of these rights to stop those profiting from your peice of work you'll be fine. But, by attempting to restrict my right to purchases and use it. Then you'll find a fight


    their primary mission is to copy coyrighted material that belongs to other people
    Damn. Does that sounds familar?... DMCA... cough... What he still doesn't get is that is are there are other uses for any object you can every own. I can turn my remote control into a weapon by beating someone with it.


    so people in the privacy of their home can tape anything that they choose, but it links to that the indispensable buckling that must take place and that is, it establishes a copyright royalty fee
    I do believe that law, the Edwards Bill (HR 5705, '82), would have been one of the most unenforceable bills ever


    87 percent, 86.8 percent of all these owners erase or skip commercials.
    Well no shit! If I recorded something off TV are you gonna stop me from fast-forwarding?... Oh yeah. You are


    Pretty soon, they will have a cassette that will record all year long, I suppose.
    Haha... Sorry... just have to laugh here.... stupid stupid man


    you will be hearing from the audio people on Wednesday, Mr. Chairman, and there is a business that is collapsing before our very eyes; $2 billion a year in stolen property
    This is 1982 (before CDRs).. And they are still whining about this... And holy hell.. Their profits have probably tripled since then.


    Valenti also included an 85-page attached statement. I just ate lunch so I won't be reading this today.

  • I am not a lawyer; I beg to ask the forgiveness of all of you in the UCLA Law School. If I was smart enough maybe I would have been a lawyer and then I would feel more comfortable about presenting this case.

    I like how right after this Valenti goes into some major legal-eese and quotes the constitution, duty of the congress, etc..

    That and: But you will be hearing from the audio people on Wednesday, Mr. Chairman, and there is a business that is collapsing before our very eyes; $2 billion a year in stolen property.

    Yeah, the RIAA sure did tank back in 81

    PK

  • A little math. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by blair1q (305137) on Friday May 31, 2002 @06:39PM (#3620146) Journal
    70 million cassettes at $80 (rental stores pay full price) plus 600 million at $14 (a savings of over 80%!) is $11 billion.

    Total theatrical receipts last year? $11 billion. A new record.

    So Mr. Valenti basically called half the industry's income a "black hole".

    He's old, he's stupid, he's perfect for the job.

    --Blair
  • by dh003i (203189) <dh003i@gmai l . com> on Friday May 31, 2002 @06:41PM (#3620159) Homepage Journal
    After reading a few paragraphs of this uninspired, poorly spoken testimony by Jack Valentini, I've come to the obvious conclusion: (1) He's racist or at least a demagogue; (2) He's a lying bastard; (3) He's incredibly fucking dumb; (4) He's a short sighted man; (5) Because of the above, we have no more reason to consider his paranoia about "infringement" today than we did back then.

    (1) He's a racist/demagogue. Its obvious from this that the man is racist. His remarks regarding the Japanese come in the category of "they're fucking us over" paranoia. If he's not a racist, he's at least a demagogue, willing to rile up people's sentiments to fulfill his ambitions. In other words, he's fine with the fact that his testimony leaves people with racist impressions, or that it leaves them irrationally stereotyping.

    (2) He's a lying bastard. This is an obvious point, as video tapes have no ruining the movie industry; in fact, they've made it stronger. Why should we trust what he says now? Its motivated by the same paranoia as was what he said back then?

    (3) He's incredibly fucking dumb. Well, if he's not (2) a lying bastard, he's (3) incredibly fucking dumb. If he sincerely believed that video's would ruin his industry, he's obviously fucking dumb. The past 20 years have proven that. So, why should we value the paranoid predictions of a fucking idiot? He's sort of like those religious idiots who were claiming apocalypse was coming at the millenium, 2000. Then it didn't come. So they said, "oh wait, the millenium's really 2001 because there was no year 0". Well, apocalypse didn't come then either. Now, they're backpeddling. See the parallels between them and Valentini? He predicted doom once, and it didn't come. He's predicted and predicting doom now, and it still isn't coming.

    (4) & (5): He's an incredibly short-sighted man, and we shouldn't trust his paranoid prophecies any more now than should we have back them. These points follow as obvious consequences of the previous points.

  • From Mr. Valenti's testimony:
    "The single centralizing principle on which this whole rostrum rests is this: If you cannot own, if what you own cannot be protected, you don't own anything and that goes for Clint Eastwood or the most obscure person in this industry or anybody in any industry. If what you own cannot be protected, you own nothing."

    I can't help interpreting Mr. Valenti's comments from my perspective: if I can't protect what I have bought, I own nothing. If you still control what you have sold me, I have been ripped off.
  • From Clint Eastwood:

    But Mr. Valenti did bring up that there is a high risk factor in the fact that 8 out of 10 films might not make their money back and get out of the red in the first period of release, which is the theatrical division.

    Really, I wonder how many movies have since been able to make that money back thought video releases? I wonder just how many copies of Harry Poter have been sold in the last three days?

    Another absolutely great quetion from one of the panel members:

    Mr. RAILSBACK. I recognize that audio may, by reason of the very large number of sets, have less of a problem as far as proving prospective damage. But I am aware, again, that the district court really made a point that your industry had not been able to show any damage at all at that time. I think there were something like 3 million at that time.

    Hmmm, that sounds strangely familiar. I guess those who don't study history are doomed to be asaulted with the same bullshit. Thanks Cryptome.

  • How many times must a
    Jack Valentini and the MPAA
    Cry wolf,
    Before we listen no more

    And how many more
    Billions must he make
    before we believe him no more

    Seriously, how many times does this paranoid schizophrenic have yell, "the bogeyman, video's or peer-to-peers, coming to steal all the money I worked so hard to steal from consumers" before we ignore him?
  • Hilights (Score:3, Funny)

    by eyeball (17206) on Friday May 31, 2002 @08:44PM (#3620780) Journal
    Ok, I know I'm late to the party, but I just have to get this out, if for no other reason then to preserve this in a /. post for my own personal reference and amusement:

    From the testimony of Jack Valenti:

    (Jack addressing "Mr. Chairman and ladies and gentlemen of the committee." I am going to stand, if you don't mind, Mr. Chairman, cause I have what is known as "visual aids."

    Jackass. I think Mr. Chairman and ladies and gentlemen of the committee know what a fucking visual aid is.

    I am merely coming to start off by talking about the American film and television industry, not as an economic enterprise, but as a great national asset to this country, to the U.S. Treasury and the strength of the American dollar. And I am not just talking on behalf of people whose names are household words, like Clint Eastwood and some of his small band of peers.

    No comment.

    ... But now we are facing a very new and a very troubling assault on our fiscal security ...

    Nice contradiction there.

    Now, these machines are advertised for one purpose in life. Their only single mission, their primary mission is to copy coyrighted material that belongs to other people.

    (Johannas Valenti, owner of the Townsville horse and buggy dealer, 1912:) "The only reason the sell these cars is for one reason: to put me out of business. See, here on the window sticker: 'Get there faster than a horse and buggy.' I rest my case your honor."

    Now, again, citing the fact that 100 percent of these machines are made in Japan and 85 percent of all of the blank tapes are made in Japan, and I say that, Mr. Chairman, because I. have to keep coming back to this trade asset because if the Congress doesn't act, then what we are going to be doing is exporting our jobs out of this country to another country, beyond the real of our own shore.

    My grandmother heard similar things in Nazi Germany.

    Now, let me tell you something about how this business works. My God, Clint Eastwood and Terry Semple, who is the head of Warner Bros., who is in this room, can speak to this with for more accuracy and understanding than I, but I think it is important to a brief summary.

    I'll review God's testimony later. Oh, and what's with this obsession with Clint?

    The permission of the copyright owner is required for the use of their programs in all markets. Now, I those markets include theaters, cable, pay cable, pay television, prerecorded cassettes, network television, syndicated television, video discs. Every one of those markets is going to be competing for Mr. Eastwood's new film "Firefox." They are going to license that film at a negotiated price. (bolding mine)

    I LOVED Firefox, especially when they blew them damn copyright infringing commies right out of the frickin sky!

    blah blah blah this is boring. Time to eat. Bye

When the weight of the paperwork equals the weight of the plane, the plane will fly. -- Donald Douglas

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