Cnet: Choosing your brand of printer ink is "piracy" An article on Cnet today is headlined: "Can cryptography prevent printer-ink piracy?"
Well, you may wonder, what is "printer-ink piracy?" The article is about a company making chips that are designed to prevent use of any ink refills not approved by the printer maker. The article does cover actual counterfeiting, that is, putting a false brand label on ink products. But it also implies that using ink not authorized by the printer maker is "counterfeiting" or "piracy".
Ink companies making their cartridges fit another company's printers is described as "Cartridges get illegally replicated through reverse engineering". If you modify your printer after you buy it to defeat the manufacturer's lock-in scheme, according to Cnet this is "Cartridges get illegally replicated through reverse engineering". It's like that throughout the article.
Get ready for some mutant hypertrophy of copyright or patent to be used to restrict hardware the way the so-called "end user licence agreement" purports to restrict your use of software. The propaganda for it is starting.
The notion of copyright and reverse engineering have become perverted over the years.
Companies lobbied for changes to copyright law that extend copyright protection virtually forever. Not content with that the media industry then had congress pass the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) that further restricted use of copyrighted works. In many cases DMCA prevents excise of fair-use rights granted under copyright law.
DMCA has turns the time honored practice of revere engineering into a crime. If DMCA had been around in the 1980s would would all be limited to buying IBM PCs because reverse engineering the BIOS, which created the PC industry, would not have been legal.
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Then we have good old DOS, of which there were many versions from different companies virtually identical and indistinguishable for the average user.
What was I in Highschool ?