<= DeCSS Central Main Page

What this is

It's not a warez site or an encouragement to pirate DVDs. As a matter of fact, even if you wanted to, it would be impractical to copy a movie DVD. See, there's around 7 to 9 gigabytes of data on your average movie DVD, or 5-6 if you just want the movie itself. That's around 10 CDs (give or take a few), not to mention that individual .vob files are up to 1 GB in size, and thus don't fit on a CD. Even with dropping prices for CD-Rs, it'll be cheaper and much less trouble to buy the original DVD.

The intent of this site is twofold, and completely different. One, to make perfectly legal uses of DVD technology possible, uses that are both possible and allowed with, for example, VHS. And two, to keep information about the weakness of CSS alive, because let's face it: It costs money to develop a good encryption and unless they must do it, the DVD consortium would rather cover up the whole mess and continue using CSS. Which does not and has never stopped the professional pirates. It's all mirrors and smoke, and it would be foolish to believe the customer has any advantage from it.

About legal uses of DeCSS: Copyright law not only forbids copying, it also explicitly allows it for certain uses, for example personal use and educational use (both within defined limits), as well as use of snippets in reviews and many other places. All this allowed copying of copyrighted material is summarized as "fair use".
CSS makes fair use impossible. I cannot take a screenshot of my favorite movie to use as a desktop wallpaper. A teacher could not copy a snippet out of a movie to show to his, say, english class. And don't even get me started about region codes.

I believe we can call it a fact that there is much more about CSS and region codes and all the other artificial restrictions of the DVD format.
See the "what might be going on" section for some guesses at what it is.
Update: Well, since the discovery of the "smoking gun" WIPO document I guess I can consider at least the basic assumption of "there's much more to this" as proven.

Legal Notes

Most things on this webpage are (C) by me, Tom Vogt, <tom-at-lemuria-dot-org>. If you have a problem with it, mail me.


I hate legalese. See, it's actually quite simple: You must apply a brain when reading this site, obtain some common sense unless you already have it, and respect the fact that I can and will say whatever I want to, since this is my page and if you don't like it, don't read it.
If for some reason you can't accept that, talk to me. I'm a reasonable human being, and as long as you are as well, we will surely find an agreement. I do, however, have a very low tolerance to being bullied. If your initial contact is a letter full of legalese, I'm much more likely to post it here than even send you a reply.
And to make that very clear: There are exactly two circumstances that will result in me changing anything on these pages: One is that I want to, and the other is that some local authority (read: a german court) asks me to. Nothing else will work.