As reported in Techdirt, the Motion Picture Association of America and the National Association of Theatre Owners have issued the following statement updating their existing “zero-tolerance policy toward using any recording device while movies are being shown” to expressly include “wearable devices” such as Google Glass:
The National Association of Theatre Owners (NATO) and the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) have a long history of welcoming technological advances and recognize the strong consumer interest in smart phones and wearable “intelligent” devices. As part of our continued efforts to ensure movies are not recorded in theaters, however, we maintain a zero-tolerance policy toward using any recording device while movies are being shown. As has been our long-standing policy, all phones must be silenced and other recording devices, including wearable devices, must be turned off and put away at show time. Individuals who fail or refuse to put the recording devices away may be asked to leave. If theater managers have indications that illegal recording activity is taking place, they will alert law enforcement authorities when appropriate, who will determine what further action should be taken.
The irony of the MPAA and NATO claiming to “have a long history of welcoming technological advances” will not be lost on anyone familiar with the major copyright debates of the last century. As the article notes, the MPAA and others in the content-producing industries have opposed virtually every new technology that could possibly be used to facilitate copyright infringement, cut into their revenue streams, or force any changes to their business models. This strategy has often clashed with the opposing interests of the consumer electronics industry, broadcasters, Internet service providers, and consumers who want maximum access to the latest technologies. Thus far, technology seems to be winning most of the battles, given the enormous amount of copyright infringement that takes place every day on the Internet alone. In the face of such challenges, the copyright concerns of groups like the MPAA and NATO are understandable. Read the full article here, and the MPAA/NATO statement here.
Reposted from Techdirt.