Legal to burn to dvd for personal use, right?

Discussion in 'TiVo Help Center' started by Dougmeister, Nov 26, 2019.

  1. Dougmeister

    Dougmeister Member

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    It is perfectly legal to burn my Tivo shows/movies to DVD for my own use, correct?

    What is the best gov't (FTC?) website that would verify this? I'm thinking "Fair Use" act...?
     
  2. Mikeguy

    Mikeguy Well-Known Member

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    It's a copyright issue--the U.S. Copyright Office. U.S. Copyright Office

    I don't know that I've seen a law/regulation/court decision on this. One might argue that it's covered by the copyright fair use doctrine, 17 U.S.C. section 107. Chapter 1 - Circular 92 | U.S. Copyright Office. See generally: More Information on Fair Use | U.S. Copyright Office. The idea being, just as the U.S. Supreme Court, in the Sony Betamax case, authorized the personal time-shifting of content you had a right to, personal format-shifting of your own content also is a fair use.

    The U.S. Copyright Office has a nifty, searchable database of fair-use court cases, which one can search by topic and court jurisdiction, and then read summaries of the resulting cases. (Wow!) Search Cases | U.S. Copyright Office

    In quickly looking through a search there, I found the recent (2017) Disney/VidAngel 9th Circuit Court of Appeals case, in which fair use was not found. https://www.copyright.gov/fair-use/summaries/disney-vidangel-9thcir2017.pdf. Although I haven't followed up with the court's written decision itself, the Copyright Office summary of the court's decision states,
    But the distinction noted there might be the differentiator for an individual consumer (as versus the commercial business in the Disney/VidAngel case) doing the space-shifting, where it indeed is personal and non-commercial.

    Just a couple of additional points. (1) If you are just doing this for your own use, it is unlikely that you would be made a target. (2) Interestingly, TiVo and Toshiba themselves seemingly felt that format-shifting is legal: I own a Toshiba Series 2 TiVo box which has a built-in DVD recorder/player, a major feature of which is to allow the consumer to burn non-copy-protected shows recorded by the TiVo box onto DVDs.
     
    Last edited: Nov 26, 2019
    kpeters59 likes this.
  3. JoeKustra

    JoeKustra in the other Alabama TCF Club

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    Ashland, PA...
    I have a DVD burner in my Magnavox 515H. Sadly, the box is only OTA for me now since it doesn't support a cable card. Also, the programs are stored in SD.
     
  4. dianebrat

    dianebrat wait.. I did what? TCF Club

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    The answer is "it's not that simple"
    The "fair use" criteria only apply to certain forms of media in certain instances, and in almost all cases removing encryption requires a DMCA violation, this is in a different boat because while Tivo content is encrypted you are given a MAK and a tool that can decrypt it.

    But from a purely technical standpoint this doesn't fall under "fair use"
     
  5. Jonathan_S

    Jonathan_S Well-Known Member

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    I am not a lawyer, so this may be outdated or ill informed.

    They probably assuming it would be treated as substantially similar to saving to videotape; which the Betamax case found was permissible time shifting. But the fact that you could shift from the hard disk later, not just shift it directly to hard disk or DVD as it was being broadcast, might have weakened that claim.

    But ultimately Fair Use in the US has historically been characterized as an affirmative defense; something you raise in court to ward off claims that your copying was infringing. As such it's a thing at least as much of case law (prior court decisions) as statute law (a law Congress passed that you can look up). The courts will apply the test from 17 U.S.C. § 107 to determine whether your specific use falls under fair use (and then their decision will inform future court cases).

    Basically they need to consider at least:
    1. the purpose and character of the use, including whether such use is of a commercial nature or is for nonprofit educational purposes;
    2. the nature of the copyrighted work;
    3. the amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole; and
    4. the effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work.
    Then they balance the impact of your copying against the rights-holder against the benefit of the copying. They could find entirely in your favor or might view it as a violation but use that proportional judgement to reduce the requested damages (theoretically to as little as an injunction to stop infringing, destroy the copy, and never do it again)

    But no, there's no law Congress passed saying that it's perfectly legal to burn TiVo shows to DVD. (In fact the method of doing so might affect the legality. I would guess you'd be on safer ground if you uses a standalone DVD burner that took HDMI in than you would be transferring the shows to a PC (after which you'd have to break the copy protection; almost certainly a DMCA violation, before you could burn them to DVD). Using an HDMI capture card on the PC would probably be closer to the former.
     
  6. kpeters59

    kpeters59 Well-Known Member

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    Wait...you still have a working DVD player?

    Most any device you own would be able to play the files from a thumb-drive.

    -KP
     
  7. Dougmeister

    Dougmeister Member

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    If I *really* like a show/movie, I like to save it on optical for longevity.
     
  8. Mikeguy

    Mikeguy Well-Known Member

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    To me, that is a very purpose of the fair use exception: making an archival copy. (But I probably could argue the flip side as well.)
     
  9. kpeters59

    kpeters59 Well-Known Member

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    -KP

    Now that's funny...Recordable DVD's are the exact opposite of a long term storage device.

    Rip them to whatever file format they're native to. Store them on a hard drive. Copy them to a 2nd hard drive you'll keep off-line mostly.
     
    UCLABB likes this.

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