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The AACS Key!
Friday, 2007 May 4 - 8:52 am
Pandora's box is open.

Well well well. Apparently one of the keys to decrypting HD-DVDs has been leaked to the intertubes. A Google search for the first couple of bytes of the sequence ("09-F9") will quickly lead you to thousands of references.

When Digg attempted to fend off possible lawsuits by suppressing articles containing the key, Digg users revolted by continuously publishing new articles containing the key. "I ate 09-F9... for breakfast today". "The new droid in Star Wars is 09-F9..." Sometimes the users would post pictures, songs, or videos containing the key.

So Digg gave in to its users, and will face the music from any lawsuit that might come up. Not only that, Digg has posted the key on its own blog. It's noteworthy that the attempt to suppress the key has backfired, as evidenced by the tremendous number of Google search results for it.

AACS, for its part, anticipated this event by making it possible to revoke keys and issue new ones. Apparently, that's already occurred for this leaked key. So new HD DVDs that come out won't be able to play on computers or players using this key; those devices will need to be upgraded.

But you know what? This is a war that AACS will lose. Someone will always find a way to crack keys and pirate content. And if it becomes too onerous to play legitimately-licensed content (i.e. if I have to update the firmware of all my HD DVD players every couple of weeks), then the public will be even more likely to turn to already-cracked content.

Content producers: you have to give in someday. The traditional model of copyright is broken. Find a new model and embrace it.
Permalink  1 Comment   Bookmark and Share
Posted by Ken in: techwatch

Comments

Comment #1 from JohnC (Guest)
2007 May 4 - 10:59 am : #
I like the adage... These sorts of copy protection never work because to create them you have a limited number of people with a limited amount of time, to break it you have a greater number of people with a greater amount of time.

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