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Tuesday, December 23, 2003
Norwegian Court again acquits 'DVD Jon'


A Norwegian appeals court today for a second time acquitted Jon Johansen aka "DVD Jon" on criminal charges of violating Norwegian law by writing and publishing a DVD descrambling program. He wrote and published the program called DeCSS so that he could watch films he owned on his Linux machine.

"After four years, Johansen has now been acquitted twice after two full trials," said Johansen's attorney Halvor Manshaus of the lawfirm Schjødt AS. "This ruling will be an important precedent in the application of existing intellectual property regulations on digital media."

Norway doesn't have a law like the Digital Millennium Copyright Act in the United States that has prevented DVD owners from viewing their own DVDs on their own computers.

According to media reports, the court also confirmed that DVD owners have the right to make backup copies.

The Norwegian prosecutors may still decide to appeal the second appeals court decision in the Johansen case to the Norwegian Supreme Court.


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