100% All-Natural Composition
No Artificial Intelligence!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

MPAA wants teachers to camcorder movies, not rip DVDs

Try this one the next time you go to see a blockbuster movie like Star Trek in the theater: record it with a camcorder and if you get caught, tell the cinema management that "I'm a teacher who needs this for my students!"

Nutty though it sounds, that is what the Motion Picture Association of America is telling teachers to do instead of ripping video from copyrighted DVDs if they want to get clips for classroom purposes. The MPAA has even prepared an instructional video (left) demonstrating how teachers can set up a television with DVD player, and then aim their camcorder at the screen to record it. Which is not only silly but as the article at Ars Technica notes, this is much more laborious and time-consuming on the part of the teacher as opposed to digitally capturing (AKA "ripping" the video segments that they need).

This should be a moot thing anyway, since use of copyrighted material for legitimate educational purposes has long been acknowledged and allowed under fair use provisions.

And how is this different from letting students come in with projects they have made using copyrighted material anyway? I took some communications classes at Elon and a lot of other students did work with clips from movies and TV shows that flat-out astounded everyone who watched 'em. In the modern era does that mean that according to the MPAA those students would all be criminals 'cuz they didn't capture their footage with a camcorder?

(They'd prolly still look better than the MPAA's own "instructional video", that's for sure...)


Doug Smith said...

So the MPAA wants to bring back the long lost art of the kinescope?