Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Botswana: Manadatory Payment for Mandatory DRM?

Botswana is working on a bill to amend the Copyright and Neighbouring Rights Act. I'd like to get my hands on it, because its content seems like a plain violation of more than one fundamental right and just sounds plain weird:
Under the proposed law, every sound and audio-visual recording made available to the public by sale, rental, lending or distribution for commercial purpose in Botswana will have a security device affixed to it. The copyright office will issue the device once the person who wants to make it available to the public has paid. The device will only be approved if the owner of the copyright has made authorisation. The device will be the only indication that it is not a pirated work. Any person who contravenes the set requirements shall be liable upon conviction to a fine not exceeding P20, 000 or to an imprisonment for a term not exceeding two years. Any person who reproduces the device without the authorisation of the copyright office shall be liable to a fine not exceeding P50, 000 or imprisonment for a term not exceeding five years.


Anonymous the_g said...

what do you mean "device"?

6/10/05 18:28  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

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6/10/05 18:43  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm guessing that "device" doesn't really mean what it generally does. Botswana is by no means a technologically advanced country. I'm guessing that it is a "device" in the sense of "a decorative design, figure or pattern" or "a graphic symbol or motto". Perhaps they're planning on issuing some kind of this-isn't-pirated hologram. I doubt very much that DRM is what they're thinking of.

That said, I still think the added bureaucracy would have a chilling effect on bands releasing their own CDs or other independant media.

7/10/05 03:02  

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