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  • EFF Prevails Over Apple in Jailbreak Showdown



    On Monday, much to the delight of the jailbreak/modding community, the Federal government has reached a decision making it possible for iPhone owners to "legally "break electronic locks on their devices in order to download applications that have not been approved by Apple." Although the questionable "legality" of such actions never inhibited many from doing so, the Federal Government is now formally sanctioning the actions under new rules announced just today.

    This outcome, of course, (which may not necessarily apply to the iPad) is far from an arbitrary development. For well over a year, the EFF (Electronic Frontier Foundation) has lobbied the government to move in this direction. Since Apple formally declared jailbreaking illegal, Rock (who approached EFF first), was promptly joined in support by Saurik, Planetbeing, Cydia, Mozilla, Skype, and others who have openly spoken out in favor of the eventuality that finally set in today.

    Apple (a "jealous and arbitrary feudal lord," according to the EFF) has staunchly opposed Jailbreaking on claims of copyright protection. As a result, the Cupertino-based tech giant has long been at odds with the EFF and its position that consumers should be able to run any application including those that Apple doesn't approve of. Today, however, the Federal Government sided with the EFF and effectively authorized "jailbreaking," which comes as one of a few important new exemptions from a federal law "that prohibits the circumvention of technical measures that control access to copyrighted works."

    Every three years the Library of Congress "authorizes such exemptions to ensure that existing law does not prevent non-infringing use of copyrighted material." Additional exemptions will:

    — allow owners of used cell phones to break access controls on their phones in order to switch wireless carriers.

    — allow people to break technical protections on video games to investigate or correct security flaws.

    — allow college professors, film students and documentary filmmakers to break copy-protection measures on DVDs so they can embed clips for educational purposes, criticism, commentary and noncommercial videos.

    — allow computer owners to bypass the need for external security devices called dongles if the dongle no longer works and cannot be replaced.


    It should be noted, however, as reported by Bloomberg, that iPhone users "still may risk voiding their warranties if they make changes to the device in order to get applications not approved by Apple." That assessment comes from Brian Marshall, a technology analyst with Gleacher & Co in San Francisco. “This happens quite frequently with people who want to change the format on the phone and have more flexibility, but when you do that you void the warranty,” Marshall told Bloomberg.

    Bloomberg
    This article was originally published in forum thread: EFF Prevails Over Apple in Jailbreak Showdown started by Michael Essany View original post
    Comments 122 Comments
    1. NiteStar's Avatar
      NiteStar -
      Quote Originally Posted by cruid View Post
      Why wouldn't you just restore the jailbroken device before sending it back to apple for warranty. Have done this 3 times and my sister has once. It's no big deal they don't have time to check each phone they send you the new one and it's in your hands 3 days later simple. Screw voiding the warranty blah blah everyone is so scared?
      I'd agree with you 100% on that, but there are instances where you might have problems getting it to restore. I know once I had my "radio" go out and and it wouldn't let me restore my iPhone. I had to manipulate iTunes into ignoring the error message and got lucky. Some aren't so lucky.
    1. alexchaynz's Avatar
      alexchaynz -
      Quote Originally Posted by Simon76 View Post
      so if we jailbreak the phone and if there's something wrong with the phone,will its still cover with the warranty
      The whole "voiding the warranty" thing is a load of garbage. If you want to return your phone, just restore it with the latest version of the OS. If it's bricked, it's not like they'll be checking if it's JB'n or not. No worries.
    1. spamsalad's Avatar
      spamsalad -
      Quote Originally Posted by sandstorm77 View Post
      I think warning should go out to stupid people who think its funny to say "Release the Jailbreak" How was that funny? I am willing to bet no one else will "LOL" your stupid comment!
      why so wired??? LOL LOL LMFAO LOL
    1. billmilo's Avatar
      billmilo -
      This is a great win for all of us. Not only does this remove jailbreaking from the gray area of the law but it removes the suspicion by many regulars users about jailbreaking.

      Next time the blond chick in my class asks me about jailbreaking I will be able to tell her: it is fully legal and permitted by federal law.

      That may push her to JB her phone thus increasing demand for JB apps and JB software. With demand comes more availbility
    1. romeoz's Avatar
      romeoz -
      Quote Originally Posted by sandstorm77 View Post
      i think warning should go out to stupid people who think its funny to say "release the jailbreak" how was that funny? I am willing to bet no one else will "lol" your stupid comment!
      troll
    1. bobright's Avatar
      bobright -
      Quote Originally Posted by billmilo View Post
      This is a great win for all of us. Not only does this remove jailbreaking from the gray area of the law but it removes the suspicion by many regulars users about jailbreaking.

      Next time the blond chick in my class asks me about jailbreaking I will be able to tell her: it is fully legal and permitted by federal law.

      That may push her to JB her phone thus increasing demand for JB apps and JB software. With demand comes more availbility
      Had to be the "blonde" chick haha
    1. karloz25's Avatar
      karloz25 -
      nnnn
    1. headcheese's Avatar
      headcheese -
      Quote Originally Posted by drufus View Post
      Awesome.... Lets go Jay..... we're waiting... lol! Great interview by the way, you did well...
      Jay has NOTHING to do with releasing the ip4 jailbreak
    1. ro0oney's Avatar
      ro0oney -
      finally free, so i can walk proudly inside the apple store with no one telling me my iphone is illegal..
    1. phoenixfire425's Avatar
      phoenixfire425 -
      What is this going to do for other platforms?
      Like the PS3?
    1. area51crypto's Avatar
      area51crypto -
      Does this mean that Apple cannot close holes to stop jailbreaking and on another note would his mean they would have to leave openings to jailbreak?
    1. delusion950's Avatar
      delusion950 -
      Awesome news ! Just need to wait for that jailbreak to come out.
    1. defdad's Avatar
      defdad -
      Quote Originally Posted by area51crypto View Post
      Does this mean that Apple cannot close holes to stop jailbreaking and on another note would his mean they would have to leave openings to jailbreak?
      No. Apple has every right to make changes to their own software, even if is just to patch an exploit.

      I guess now, in addition to being an iPhone hacker, I am also a video game security tester and a documentary film maker. ;^)
    1. iTouch-Warrior's Avatar
      iTouch-Warrior -
      Now these are good news! Although I'm sure Apple will keep closing the holes used for jailbreaking the iDevices and voiding warranties, but at least it's a huge step forward for the community!
    1. zozodouce's Avatar
      zozodouce -
      Great news.
    1. sandstorm77's Avatar
      sandstorm77 -
      Quote Originally Posted by romeoz View Post
      troll
      IM not a troll. IM just sick of people asking "when is the jailbreak coming"! If you visit ModMyi often, you will know when its released!
    1. The Maestro's Avatar
      The Maestro -
      Unlocking is legal? I wish we could force AT&T to give us unlock access
    1. alexevo's Avatar
      alexevo -
      I like that the consumers have finally gotten a victory but lets be honest. How many of us are really going to copy Call of Duty Black Ops to "investigate flaws and security concerns" rather than just give the copy to our buddies so we can all play on Xbox Live?

      This just adds fuel to the fire and will likely cause Apple to make it increasingly difficult to jailbreak and unlock iPhones.

      This says it allows users to break access controls. It doesn't say that Apple has to A. make it easy, B. give you access, or C. assist you in any way. Meaning Apple will give everyone the big F YOU and pour tons of resources into making unlocking so difficult that everyone just ends up staying on AT&T. Plus what good is EDGE on T-Mobile. Do you REALLY want slow data speeds on a smaller carrier that bad?
    1. mr117's Avatar
      mr117 -
      What it means is Apple can't say jailbreakers are criminals. The warranty is always their trump card. If your jb phone locks up and you can't restore it, taking it to Apple probably won't do you much good. But it does mean you can jailbreak and unlock and you are within the law. Finally.

      As a teacher (educator sounds too high-faluttin'), I welcome the ability to not have to fight with my district over using clips in my classroom. I have a new smartboard, and I can do multi-media with it. Now, no worries.
    1. macsoldier's Avatar
      macsoldier -
      This is great, it gives us a fair chance to learn more about our products and get more people involved in developing. This is definatly a great chance to keep all the great jailbreaking and mods going without legal worries, Great Job EFF and thanks.