Broadcast Flag Nearly Dead in the Water

The EFF quotes a story from the (for-pay-only) Communications Daily, reporting that the MPAA is backing away from asking the House Commerce Committee from including a broadcast flag provision in a digital TV bill, because Committee Chair Joe Barton is against it.

That doesn’t mean the MPAA is giving up, but it does mean that they’ll have to work a lot harder to slip it in.

For those who aren’t geeked out on the issue, the broadcast flag would require all digital TV receivers to be able to lock up programs based upon signals contained in programs. With the flag, a producer could keep you from recording certain programs, sharing them, or only allow recordings to live on a hard drive for so many days. The FCC tried to implement the flag, but got smacked by the Court of Appeals, which said the FCC had no authority to do so, which is why the MPAA is now knocking on doors all over Capitol Hill.