Chinese-made DVD players recalled


MUMBAI: The Motion Picture Association of America, Inc. (MPAA) announced that its member companies have won a breach of contract lawsuit against AKI Digital Electrical Appliance Co., Ltd.


The US District Court found that the company breached its CSS license by selling DVD players that lacked appropriate security features that prohibit the unlawful reproduction and distribution of filmed entertainment. The ruling requires AKI to recall all products in violation of the CSS license and pay the studios’ legal fees. This is the eighth such lawsuit that has concluded with a court-ordered injunction mandating a DVD product manufacturer to adhere to the content security features of the CSS license.


“Compliance with the CSS license is critical in ensuring that creative works are not illegally reproduced. All companies that sign the CSS license must honor its terms by making secure products that protect DVD content. Eight courts have issued permanent injunctions banning future violations of the license, and we intend to pursue other violators through the courts,” said MPAA vice president and associate general counsel Dan Robbins.


The CSS license provides content protection that enables film studios to provide consumers with over 68,000 DVD titles, including over 13,000 new titles last year alone.


The motion picture studios are third-party beneficiaries of the CSS license and may enforce it against licensees who fail to honor its terms. The studios have won two injunctions against DVD player manufacturers and six injunctions against DVD chip manufacturers. MPAA member companies have ongoing investigations involving other products that may violate the CSS license and are considering appropriate enforcement action. According to a recent study by the Institute for Policy Innovation the US economy loses $58 billion annually to copyright infringement resulting in the loss of nearly 375,000 jobs and the loss of $2.6 billion in annual tax revenues. The worldwide motion picture industry, including foreign and domestic producers, distributors, theaters, video stores and pay-per-view operators lost $18.2 billion in 2005 as a result of piracy – over $7 billion of which is attributed to Internet piracy and more than $11 billion attributed to hard goods piracy including bootlegging and illegal copying.