History:Copy Protected CDs

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Keeping track of Copy Protected CDs in MusicBrainz


Digital Forbruger Danmark has suggested and volunteered the implement a feature that lets MusicBrainz keep track of which audio CDs adhere to the redbook audio standard (read: not copy protected) and which CDs contains copy protection.

They would like to keep track of:

  • Artist
  • Name of the CD
  • FreeDB/CD Index Id
  • Conforms to redbook (Y/N)
  • If No, then what copyprotection is being used?
  • A link to find more details on the copyprotection
  • apm: This is probably localized information, but having a unique ID you can take with you home to check before purchase like the barcode would be great. Like the ISBN of a book.

MB obviously supports the first two of these items, and the CD Index portion of the third item. Do we really need to keep track of a FreeDB id?

Peter (apm) from DFD has volunteered his own time to implement this feature, and this wiki page should let us discuss how to implement this and what tasks peter will need to cover in order to bring this feature to MB.

Outstanding Questions

  • Can anyone add information about copyprotection? (rk: yes)
  • Can anyone add a new copyprotection scheme to MB (rk: yes, if peter is willing to do that work)
  • Do we need to keep track of a FreeDB id? (rk: no)
    • My understanding of FreeDB IDs is that we actually already have all the information required to create a FreeDB ID (at least for those albums for which we have a TOC). Thus that information could be fed through the FreeDB algorithm, and a FreeDB ID value stored in a new, indexed column. Of course, not doing all of this is still the simpler, and perhaps better option - DaveEvans

Database Changes

(reserved for DaveEvans)

Implementation Changes

  1. Update DB init/modification scripts for the new feature
    1. Create*.sql
    2. add any new tables to Export / Import scripts
    3. if this creates a new export set - e.g. musicbrainz-cdcompliance.tar.bz2 - then this would need to be added to backup scripts, download pages etc.
  1. Create/update album display code to indicate that copy protection info is available
  2. Create a copyprotection detail page that shows the CD and copy protection details and moderation links
  3. Create moderation classes for copy protection information
    1. files:
    2. handler .pm files
    3. ModDefs.pm
    4. handler display components
    5. form pages to enter the moderations
    6. mod types:
    7. add / edit / delete CD type
    8. ...
  1. Create a page for adding/editing copy protection schemes (optional)
  2. Test, test, test

Legal Issues

Keeping a flag that indicates if a CD conforms to the redbook standard is almost certainly legal. Keeping track of which scheme is being used and where to find more information on this scheme is questionably under the DMCA. I have contacted our pro-bono lawyers with this question, and we will have to wait for them to answer this question until we can safely proceed. :-(

Background in Danish law: In spite of the actual text of the Danish law. The responsible minister claims that it is NOT illegal to developr, use or distribute tools like DeCSS. The argument is that this tool is necessary for your personal consumption of the product. DFD regards circumvention tools for "copyprotected" CDs the same way, so we feel the need to give the consumers a database tool which 1) let's them see through false marketing and find out which CDs are actually NOT CDs AND 2) Makes it possible for them to find out what's wrong with the product they purchased an find a tool to play it anyway.

The new Danish EUCD implementation states (my translation):

    Paragraph 75c:
     1) It is not allowed to circumvent effective technological measures without the approval of the right holder.
     2) It is not allowed to develop, import, distribute, sell, rent, advertise for sale or rent or with commercially possess, devices, products or components which:
    - are subject to promotion of sale, commercial or marketing with the
      purpose of circumventing  effective technological measures.
    - only in limited amount have other commercial purpose or other
      commercial use than circumventing  effective technological
      measures, or - 
    - primarily are developed, produced, adjusted or provided with the
      purpose of enabling or help  circumventing  effective technological
     3) The text of 2) also covers services.
     4) By "effective technological measures" in 1) and 2) is understood any kind of effective technological measures which is used with the purpose of protecting works and other productions etc. which are protected by this law.
     5) The text of 1-4) does not cover protections of computer programs.

There is of course risk that such a database may be regarded as "a service which primarily are provided with the purpose of enabling or help circumventing effective technological measures." (which is not entirely wrong :) ). Then we'll have to argue that CD-protections are not "effective". Anyway - DFD is willing to take the legal risk of hosting this in Denmark if it's necessary and technologically possible.

Hmm... we might be on shaky legal ground by saing "That's not a CD, it's a shiny silver disc with music on it!"? thatsux. -- MartinRudat 09:04, 13 June 2006 (UTC)