March 12, 2012
| by Rachel Cericola
The Kaleidescape concept has always been a bit of a slippery slope. Is copying a DVD ok in some cases, but not in others? According to the DVD Copy Control Association, the two are one in the same—and they currently have the judge’s ruling to back them up.
After a lengthy trial, Judge William J. Monahan of the California Superior Court decided in favor of the DVD CCA, an organization that controls the copy control system on all of your DVDs. The CCA is made up of a variety of CE manufacturers and six major movie studios.
Kaleidescape has been designing and selling movie servers since 2001. Each model makes a copy of the owner’s DVDs (and Blu-rays, depending on the model), allowing users to enjoy private use in any room in the house. Just last month, our own Grant Clauser shared his experiences with the Kaleidescape 1U Server and M700 Disc Vault.
This is the third round of litigation between the two parties, but Kaleidescape doesn’t seem discouraged in the least. In fact, the company has already filed a notice of appeal.
“Kaleidescape operates with a very high degree of integrity, and we work meticulously to comply with each and every agreement that we sign, so this ruling is extremely disappointing,” said Michael Malcolm, Kaleidescape’s chairman, founder, and CEO. “We have always believed, and continue to believe, that our products comply with the CSS license agreement, and in court we will continue to fight the DVD CCA’s allegations to the contrary.”
According to Kaleidescape, the company goes through great lengths to product the rights of the content owner.
“For the past 8 years, we’ve been baffled about why this lawsuit ever happened, since our products don’t encourage piracy, but do increase sales of movies. Maybe it’s because the large CE companies in Japan and the big computer companies in the USA, on the board of the DVD CCA, are afraid that Kaleidescape is building a better way to enjoy DVDs and Blu-ray Discs than they are,” says Malcolm. “Imagine a world where Apple wasn’t allowed to build the iPod because Sony wanted a ‘level playing field’ for the Walkman.”
Kaleidescape won its first trial, with the DVD CCA taking the second round. The company says that the appeal process could take between up to two years.
Over the past 15 years, Rachel Cericola has covered entertainment, web and technology trends. Check her out at www.rachelcericola.com.