UK programmer of the famous DVD Decrypter software was forced to quit
development of his software package, after heavy pressure from an unnamed
The developer has posted a resignation letter on the CD Freaks
website saying that he has received a letter from a company (unnamed),
which has forced him to stop the development, support and
online distribution of the DVD Decrytpter software. In addition, the
developer should hand over his popular website www.dvddecrypter.com
currently offline - to the "company".
"Ok so it has taken a while (almost 2 years), but eventually 'a certain
company' has decided they don't like what I'm doing (circumventing their
protection) and have come at me like a pack of wolves," the developer
said. "I've no choice but to cease everything to do with DVD Decrypter. I
realise this is going to be one of those 'that sucks -- fight them!' kinda
things, but at the end of the day, it's my life and I'm not about to throw
it all away (before it has even really started) attempting to fight a
battle I can't possibly win."
The developer continued to say: "If 321 Studios can't do it with millions,
what chance do I have with £50?", referring to the US company
that in February 2004 was forced to stop producing its DVD copying
products when a US judge ruled them illegal under US law.
"So anyway, from this point forward, I'm no longer permitted to provide
any sort of assistance with anything that helps people infringe the rights
of a 'certain company'," said the UK developer.
According to rumours circulating in various forums online, the 'company'
that legally pursued the DVD Decrypter project is either Macrovision or
Macrovision has actively chased various developers in the past for
breaking its copy protection schemes, with the latest example being the
Norwegian developer Jon Lech Johansen. Macrovision had charged Johansen
with copyright violations after he created the DeCSS de-scrambling program.
Similarly, Sony's ARccOS protection for DVDs was claimed to be
bypasseed by DVD Decrypter in its latest versions, giving Sony a good
reason to react.
Currenly there are many other development groups worldwide, claiming to
"defeat" the various copy protection schemes. AnyDVD software by
Slysoft is a good example, developed in Antigua. Another popular DVD
decypter is DVD43 which works as a background process in Windows XP.
However, the the author of this software is based in China.
DVD Decrypter was based in the UK, where it seems that it could have been
breaking the law. The developer's liability would be under the Copyright
and Related Rights Regulations 2003, which was implemented in the European
The near future is expected to be very interesting, as technologies like
Advanced Access Content System (AACS) will give HD-DVD or Blu-ray users
the ability to store a copy of a movie on their PC, for personal use. As
we have seen in the past, software development groups are expected to seek
new ways of overcoming the various protection schemes.