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DVD "ripping" and piracy

Discussion in 'Movie Forum' started by Mattie, Sep 26, 2000.

  1. Mattie

    Mattie
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    I've recently been researching creating video cd's for legitimate purposes. I discovered Nero can burn VCDs onto CDR from a collection of still jpegs, so I've scanned loads of old photos, burned the VCD and it plays a slideshow on my Pioneer 606 DVD. Cool, if a little sad (watch out, Kodak might sue me)

    Anyway, while looking for VCD info, I discovered a lot of material about copying DVDs. The standard piracy argument has always been, DVD writing is prohibitively expensive, so it won't happen. But what these guys are doing is ripping the data streams off a DVD (with DeCSS-derived tools), and then either creating mpeg1 VCDs, mpeg4 DivX CDs, or something they call mini-DVD, which I think is mpeg2 on a CDR (or is that SuperVCD, I dunno) Most of these formats only play on a PC.

    At the moment the process seems very long and complex, but they are doing some very intricate things. Some of the divx ones have menus, switchable commentary tracks and subtitles.

    My question is, what impact, if any, do you think these developments will have on our hobby? If your immediate answer is, "none", then I can tell you that most of the R1 DVD stalls at Bowlers (a computer fair in Manchester) don't sell DVDs any more, just these VCD variants. These pirated copies are entering the food chain. What do you think? Can we do anything about it? Should we?
     
  2. RobT

    RobT
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    Well you could do your concern citizen bit, and shop them to Trading Standards and/or FACT (Federation Against Copyright Theft). Or then you could just ignore it.

    It's not entering our food chain. How often have you been in these markets and seen dodgy video cassettes of not-yet-released cinema titles and thought I'm not wasting my money on that POS. Same with the pirated VCD's. The price differental between brand-spanking new imported R1 DVD's and these VCD rips isn't enough to tempt me into buying them and trying to ignore the compression artifacts as I'm watching it. Besides my DVD player does'nt play CDR's and my wife and I are not interested in watching a film around my 17" monitor. If the majority of the members in this forum spend a fortune on high-spec AV kit, they do not want to watch poor quality stuff on it. Bit of a waste, don't you think.

    So my answer is: Who cares; No, No.

    And as for any counterarguement talking about the piracy forcing up the price of DVDs - B*ll*cks. Blame the studios for spitting them out at £20 a pop over here (average High street prices), though poor sales at those prices may be the reason why so many of the HS stores seem to continue with the "Buy 1 get one free/half price" offers.

    DVD piracy isn't going to have a major impact on DVD sales until you get cheap burners (~£300) capable of doing DVD-9's, DVD-18's, with blank DVD's at about £1.

    Cheers
     
  3. Mattie

    Mattie
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    Obviously none of us here are going to buy a crappy VCD, however well produced, and I didn't mean to suggest that we would be so stupid. But, and in saying this I might be underestimating him, will Joe Public know the difference between a VCD and a DVD? It drives me nuts when I ring up s/hand "DVD for sale" ads in the local papers and find out they're actually selling VCDs.

    With hindsight I think I may have come across as a little paranoid in my first post above. I set out to tell the forum what I'd found out about the piracy scene, just the facts without comment, but when writing the post I added the last paragraph which makes out that I saw VCD as the death of dvd... which of course I don't mean. I'm far more concerned about the effect of copy protection, watermarking etc. on the industry than I am about piracy itself... at least until, as Rob said, burners and media are cheap.

    Hope this ameliorates the stupidity factor of my first post a little.

    ---------------------------
    "When I'm wrong, I say I'm wrong."
    Clue: I always had a soft spot for Jennifer Grey.


     
  4. Rachael Bitchlist

    Rachael Bitchlist
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    The age of burners may very well push back at Hollywood's often capricious prices. Maybe they'll have to sell at lower, closer to market prices. It could work out something like that, but the future is strange.....

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    Rachael, the big disc cat!
     
  5. Guest

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    Piracy will always exist if their is a market for a pirate copy of something that can be copied and sold at a much reduced price.

    With the Internet it is a lot harder to stop the spread of dvd copying software etc as the moment a site is taken down the pirates see it as an attack on their rights and multiple mirrors of the original site appear.


    Anyway, If I wan't **** poor quality VCD movies or mpeg4 DiVX discs etc that can only be played on PC I would not be spending 100's of pounds buying official dvds.


    As for DVDs piracy it is the fault of US export law that meant that DVD Players could only use a 56bit encrytion key which is nothing nowadays. Also the designers of the dvd spec for some reason only use about a 5 bit key to decrypt the key. Actaully De-CSS actually remove the the region coding of the disc, anyone can copy a disc to another without the need for addition cracking software all it does it create an exact copy with region coding intact (some newer drivers prevent thism but older versions of drivers are freely available (for compatibility reasons) that have no such method of prevention)

     
  6. RobT

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    ROTFLMAO Haha [​IMG]. This *is* Hollywood we're talking about! Remember these are the guys that forced regionality upon the DVD market to maintain control and maximise their profits.

    Dropping prices is not in their equation until a new media comes along to superceed DVD (eg Super-DVD? Along the lines of S-CD with its improved quality and anti-copying technology)

    Cheers
     
  7. Dodgey

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    I think the whole piracy issue is a non issue. The only people who buy copies or make them are:

    1) Kids who can't afford to buy the real thing anyway, so no money lost to anyone.

    Or

    2) Suckers who come back from Thai holidays with fake Guccis and Rolexes and shi**y VCDs. The same category of lamers who would only buy new DVDs at Christams anyway.

    [​IMG]
     

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