Library of Congress issues new exemptions to DMCA – Jailbreaking iPhones now legal

Library of CongressNot only is jailbreaking your iPhone now perfectly legal, there are other exemptions to the DMCA act that the Library of Congress has just issued.

They include:

  • allow circumventing DRM on DVDs in order to include excerpts into educational materials, documentaries, and non-commercial videos
  • allow cell phones owners to break controls so that the phones can be used on different wireless networks
  • allow video game owners to break protections to correct security flaws
  • allow computer owners to bypass external security dongles if they no longer work
  • allow blind/vision-impaired people to break locks on ebooks so they can be used with read-aloud software.

You may be wondering why there is even a need for such otherwise common-sense guidelines. It just goes to show how short-sighted the DMCA (Digital Millenium Copyrights Act) turned out to be.

Unfortunately, these exemptions expire in a few years and are not permanent laws. It certainly makes trying to be an upstanding citizen a difficult process, especially as so many law-enforcement groups follow the ‘innocence is no excuse’ rule of thumb.