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  • Latest From EFF vs. Apple on Jailbreaking


    Late Friday Greg Joswiak from Apple, Fred von Lohmann from the Electronic Frontier Foundation, and officials from the US Copyright Office, record labels, movie studios, and the software industry sat down together for a hearing concerning the EFF's requested DMCA exemption of Jailbreaking. This comes just a few months after the EFF originally filed for an exemption for Jailbreaking to which Apple responded with claims that Jailbreaking is illegal.

    Apple is still opposing Jailbreaking and claims that copyright protection is why they have sold 30 million iPhones and 1 billion applications. The EFF's position continues to be that comsumers should be able to run any application including those that Apple doesn't approve of.

    Apple is afraid of losing their control on the iPhone where they get to choose what applications are allowed to run for whatever reasons they have. If the exemption for Jailbreaking were approved Apple's Joswiak thinks that “This would severely limit our ability to continue what we are doing as well as innovate for the future.”

    Competition breeds innovation. Shouldn't Apple have a little competition? Wouldn't that force them to do things better? It isn't too much of a stretch to think that firmware 3.0 including many basic features that Apple ignored for a couple of years is in response to the Jailbreaking community adding these features to the iPhone themselves.

    Apple is concerned with protecting their contracts with carriers. When asked by the one of the Copyright Office's councils if Apple's contracts with AT&T “prohibits you from implementing certain applications?” Joswiak responded saying that “We [Apple] don’t allow any bandwidth hogs” (cough where is slingplayer cough).

    Apple, The Motion Picture Association of America, the Recording industry Association of America, the Business Software Alliance and more are worried about piracy that could occur if the Jailbreaking exemption is approved. In Apple's case they are worried that Jailbreaking could cut into their revenue -- they currently get 30% from the sales made on the App Store. Steve Metalitz, a representative for the other groups said that “The impact will be to open up fast fields for the manufacturers and purveyors of pirated games.”

    In response von Lohmann argued that the exemption which would apply to all mobile phone platforms including Google's Andriod is warented because by-itself it is a non-infringing activity that the DCMA authorizes. He went further to say that “This is a close ecosystem of a business model,” adding: “I don’t think Congress meant that when they passed the DMCA."

    The decision on whether the Copyright Office will decide to grant this exemption is not expected until later this year. At the hearing on friday the Copyright Office representatives showed no sign of how they feel either way. We'll just have to wait and see how this all plays out. Go Jailbreaking!

    [via wired]
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Latest From EFF vs. Apple on Jailbreaking started by Cody Overcash View original post
    Comments 66 Comments
    1. chrispy212's Avatar
      chrispy212 -
      Let me start out by saying I have jailbroken my iPod, and shall continue to fight to keep it jailbroken, whether the process is illegal or not.
      What I DO oppose is the piracy. Some of the decent app store apps out there are made by teenagers. For some developers, it is their livelihood. And some people are stealing from them.
      It's MY PHONE!!! If I wanna throw it up against the wall and break it then so be it.
      Damn straight. You aren't affecting anyone else (unless in the process of chucking your phone at the nearest solid object you give someone a concussion!) Same with jailbreaking. You putting a winterboard theme on your phone is what you wanna do, and screw people who tell you that you can't, it affects nobody.

      If I wanna install hacked pirated apps on my phone then OH WELL!
      Wrong. It's stealing. Fact. You are stealing from teenagers. You are stealing from people who's livelihood is software development. Have you ever walked into a gamestation and stuck a game under your jacket before walking out? 'Cos that's what piracy is. But it's easier, harder to get caught, and so people think it's ok.

      It needs to be established with Apple and the MPAA/RIAA that jailbreaking is seperate from piracy. Jailbreakers aren't all pirates.
    1. kelticfury's Avatar
      kelticfury -
      Quote Originally Posted by treble26 View Post
      the main reason why i jailbreak my iphone is because i like to customize my devices. i dont really care about the cracked apps.
      [SNIP]
      jailbreaking is the best thing thats ever happened to the iphone and ipod touch. being able to get features that apple has denied us and being able to change the look of our iphones and ipod touch is kinda the reason why people are the iphone.
      I agree! I only have an ipod touch at the moment, but I wouldn't even have that if I couldn't add themes and the book-reader. If I wanted a device that would only play my music, I would use a simple mp3 player that does that job just fine without the annoyance of iTunes.

      In fact, if I didn't have a jailbroken ipod I never would have gotten interested in app programming and I certainly wouldn't have bought a macbook to program on.

      So at least in my particular case Apple wouldn't have sold me any products at all without the existence of jailbreak.
    1. BenzoHartt's Avatar
      BenzoHartt -
      defintely informative
    1. michym's Avatar
      michym -
      jailbreaking is great and has allowed us to do many things (that were promised).

      but i think the biggest perk is to customize and make it YOURphone!

      lets say apple decides to allow apps so that you can change the theme on your phone. buy it like a ring tone for $2.00 or even $3.00 and everything is that theme. like ps3 the themes are awesome and only like $3.00. i would looovvveee it even more!
    1. thetoothfairy's Avatar
      thetoothfairy -
      Quote Originally Posted by rubenmer5 View Post
      You hit the spot, cash7c3. Thats exactly why Apple is doing what they are doing. The competition force them to come up with firmware 3.0, therefore, losing control over their profits wanting to make money bringing those Apps little by little instead all at once. Shame on them and cheers to the guys that force them to come up with firmware. Keep up the good job!
      I am glad that there is competition.... and I can't wait for 3.0 to come out! And we all the competition will continue so Apple better keep up! I will agree with this statement as well!

      Quote Originally Posted by Magnum View Post
      your not very affectivly "hurting" apple by using cracked apps...just the wonderfull devs who make these apps we all love...yeah apple loses 30% from ONE dev if they decide to stop because their app is being cracked...but thats nothing to them...your just causing devs to stop making apps, and to raise prices...if you hate apple, steal an iPhone...not an app...

      and dont get me started on you a$ stealing from our lovely jailbreak community...stealing Cyntact and stuff...if it wasnt for those people we wouldnt even be having this discussion...maybe not even this website!!!

      SHOW SOME RESPECT...
      Nice statement! I was going to say the same thing about using cracked apps!
    1. ssjgohan4life's Avatar
      ssjgohan4life -
      Give us phones/touches that you can customize, and I won't need to jail break, seems simple enough don't you think? I didn't jail break to hack games or to change how my touch works, I just wanted to make it MINE, and not be limited to changing the lock screen background as my only means of customization.
    1. jaded_lude's Avatar
      jaded_lude -
      first of all jailbreaking, and cracking app store apps are 2 completely different things. if this would all go through the way we want it and jailbreaking would be legal, there is no way that apple or anyone else would support cracking apps. these are 2 totally different topics. but what i just wanted to say was that if it wasnt for jailbreaking i probably would not have bought a 3g iphone after i had my jailbroken 1st gen iphone. i think it is rediculous how apple puts the lock on what we can and can't do with the phones that we paid for. and if it wasnt for the devs, that figured out how to do that for us, i probably would have bought a different phone. im sure im not the only one that feels this way.

      so basically if it wasnt for jailbreaking apple would have lost money.

      nick
    1. ddonuts4's Avatar
      ddonuts4 -
      Even if they do make jailbreaking illegal, people will still jailbreak LOL. Maybe they will do it more often then. Most people I know who have iPhones have no idea what jailbreaking is and it being made illegal will make it so that nearly everyone will know what it is. It will probably be on the news.
    1. confucious's Avatar
      confucious -
      Quote Originally Posted by CrooKid View Post
      Call it what you want but Devs know what they are getting into when they decide to become devs for a living.
      Your name says it all.

      You are scum. Go away and come back when you are old enough to realise what you are doing.
    1. kagehito54's Avatar
      kagehito54 -
      Quote Originally Posted by confucious View Post
      Your name says it all.

      You are scum. Go away and come back when you are old enough to realise what you are doing.
      Amen to that. I can see it from a hackers point of view and to get stuff for free is a plus. But not if I'm stealing from a dev that doesn't work for a company, like if I don't buy his app homeboy doesn't eat(not that it matters cause Apple doesn't know how to pay their devs anyway). Cause that's just not right. But really when you're not buying these apps legitimately chances are if enough people do it that dev will flop and never come out with anything better later on because now he's broke because people didn't want to dish out a $1+ for the app that they put all their hard work into.
    1. treble26's Avatar
      treble26 -
      Quote Originally Posted by kelticfury View Post
      I agree! I only have an ipod touch at the moment, but I wouldn't even have that if I couldn't add themes and the book-reader. If I wanted a device that would only play my music, I would use a simple mp3 player that does that job just fine without the annoyance of iTunes.

      In fact, if I didn't have a jailbroken ipod I never would have gotten interested in app programming and I certainly wouldn't have bought a macbook to program on.

      So at least in my particular case Apple wouldn't have sold me any products at all without the existence of jailbreak.
      i agree, installing cracked apps is stealing, and i know i may sound like a hypocret but i do download cracked apps but i only downlaod a few. but thats not the reason why i jailbroke my iphone, its becuz i can make my iphone express my personality. but over all YES, DOWNLOADING CRACKED APPS IS STEALING AND WE ARE HURTING THE HARDWORKING DEVS. and Apple does need to know that jailbreaking is completely different than piracy. we are just simply customizing our devices based upon our personalities. isnt that what makes customizing a great thing to do? people customize their cars, clothes, game consoles, computers, houses, bikes, etc. so why should jailbreaking an iphone or ipod touch to customize it be any different? our personalities is what separates us from everybody else, so wouldnt we want the same for the iphone and ipod touch? we want our devices to be different from everybody elses devises, we dont want to all have the exact same thing.
    1. sziklassy's Avatar
      sziklassy -
      I think one thing that people need to realize before getting on their high horse about how we shouldn't crack apps because that is stealing and it will cause devs to not produce apps is that most people who decide to used cracked apps wouldn't have purchased the app in the first place. The only reason they are installing the cracked app is because they can. If they couldn't, they would simply live without it.

      Does this mean that I am for piracy? No. What it does mean is that I am not naive enough to think that if 1 million people download a cracked app, and that cracked app is no longer available, then that app will see 1 million new buyers. In reality the number of buys would be in the hundreds, if that. Yes, that is a bit of more profit, but really not enough to make a damn bit of difference in the long run.

      I am also going to say that I, personally, do not have a soft spot for the people who say that their app is their livelihood. It's a small niche market that is not going to last forever. If you dropped everything you were doing in hopes to get rich quick in the appstore market you are a fool. If you make a GOOD app, regardless of sales, you will have that app on your resume. If you are worth hiring to a project that is bigger and better, that will happen, regardless of your numbers. Furthermore, if you make a GOOD app, people will buy it. Notice it is the people making apps that sell a couple hundred that are complaining. The creators of apps selling thousands upon thousands could care less, simply because they made a good enough app to be worth buying anyway.

      I know, to some these views may be harsh, but sit down and think for a minute. They are completely realistic.
    1. tpetersen545's Avatar
      tpetersen545 -
      From a legal standpoint, I don't exactly see what legs apple has to stand on. I mean they're a fortune 500 company so they obviously have the means to take a shot at it, whats a a couple hundred thousand dollars in legal fees to them in reality?

      However, they are selling a good, not a service or anything that could have the legality of it's manipulation determined arbitrarily. Which I would argue, once somebody purchases any good, it is solely their property, and they therefore have the right to do whatever they want with it, but they cannot expect apple to fix or even care about a device that's been tampered with in that manner (and I doubt any of us do).

      The app store is still accessable in jailbroken and unlocked iphones, and users still have the option of using it to download apps. Apple's goal was to make a phone that was more similar to a computer than ever before, well they got what they wanted, freeware, shareware and all. Be careful what you wish for.

      cracked apps, yes I can see where you would want to fight that. However jailbreaking and downloading cracked apps are not the same thing. Jailbreaking is not piracy and thats all there is to it, I see no way that anyone can put together an argument on the illegality of jailbreaking.
    1. williamsjp2004's Avatar
      williamsjp2004 -
      IMHO

      As far as I remember it, Apple is not opposed to jailbreaking for the reason of customization. It's because of the reverse engineering used that "possibly" uses the copywriten code designed by Apple.
      I can see them being able to stand their own on that. If, in fact, jailbreaking uses Apple's code it could be illegal to jailbreak because you are willingly and knowingly engaging in copyright infringement when installing the "new" code on your phone. I myself applied the jailbreak to my phone before ever even adding contacts to it.
      Don't get me wrong, I think jailbreaking should never be illegal. I think Apple should follow in the footsteps of the G1 and open their code to developers to increase the scope of possible innovation.
      As far as pirating/cracking apps or installing said apps, that is just plain illegal. No doubts.
      I don't claim to know any more about legal proceedings than the average Joe so somebody please correct me if I am wrong.
    1. mcarchos's Avatar
      mcarchos -
      It doesn't matter anyway.... as long as open source developers are willing to create the jailbreak software and third party programs there will always be millions of people willing to use it. No one likes being told what they can or can not do with their own property and sooner or later companies like Apple and the MPAA will come to terms with that and realize that people who are inclined to pay for their products will anyway, regardless of the legalities. Companies selling used movies, software and music cost the movie, music and software industry more than filesharing does since it is "legal" and more wide spread and since they don't have to pay the manufacturers anything (as far as I know).
      Plus... the iPhone is basically a PocketMac and since computers aren't restricted as to what you are allowed to put on it, the iPhones should be treated the same.
    1. djdraco's Avatar
      djdraco -
      seriously if they are worried about jailbreaking out-programming them and their product why not hire the devs who create the jailbreaks and all the programs that make the phone that much better? its what the government does with high-end hackers. don't become enemies if there is opportunity to work together to make something better.
    1. shabz_de_don's Avatar
      shabz_de_don -
      it'll only get more popular if they allow it... daam you apple!
    1. ikkviper's Avatar
      ikkviper -
      Ha! I wonder how many Apple employees have a jailbroken iphone?
    1. treble26's Avatar
      treble26 -
      Quote Originally Posted by ikkviper View Post
      Ha! I wonder how many Apple employees have a jailbroken iphone?
      i bet all of them , i bet they just take the theme off when they enter the building. lol.