MPAA illegally copies movies

Written by Wil Harris

January 25, 2006 // 10:41 a.m.

Tags: #copyright #dcma #film #kirby-dick #mpaa #this-film-has-not-yet-been-rated

Oh the irony. The MPAA is being forced to justify its actions today, after reports emerged that it has been engaging in unauthorised copying of movies.

The movie in question is called This movie has not yet been rated, and is a documentary featuring examining the actions and the structure of the MPAA. The MPAA itself is a collection of anonymous individuals who are solely responsible for the ratings of films in the USA, yet have little-to-no accountability. The documentary attempts to find out who these people are, and then examines the attitudes of the association to things such as sex v violence, heterosexual v homosexual content, the treatment of indie films v the preference allegedly given to big studios.

By way of justification, the MPAA said that the spying and intrusion on its employees warranted it distributing copies of the movie to its employees.

Here's a quote from the Ars story:

"Director Kirby Dick submitted the film for rating in November. After receiving the movie, the MPAA subsequently made copies without Dick's permission. Dick had specifically requested in an e-mail that the MPAA not make copies of the movie. The MPAA responded by saying that "the confidentiality of your film is our first priority."

Dick later learned that the MPAA made copies of the film to distribute them to its employees, despite the MPAA's stance on unauthorized copying."


Hands up if you hate American monopolists? Yeah, us too. Over in the UK, we have the British Board of Film Classification, an open and identifiable body that has a reputation for being progressive and friendly with its ratings. Then again, it doesn't have to deal with the American schizophrenic attitude to sex, which must help.

What do you make of the MPAA's actions? Are they acting responsibily for the good of their members, or are they swiftly making themselves into a laughing stock? Answers on a postcard please, or alternatively, in our forum.

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