Academy DVD players

Supposedly, the main source of high quality movie rips is from screeners; a screener is a pre-release of the movie on DVD that awards groups (e.g. The Academy, runners of the Oscars) send out to their members so that they can rate the movies. The Academy atleast believes they can stop this happening by having specially encrypted disks that can only be played on Academy DVD players. On a related "piracy" note, it would appear that film director, Michael Moore, is encouraging people to download illegally his most recent film.

"The organization behind the Academy Awards is eyeing new technology to prevent a sequel to last year's embarrassing attempt to protect films by not distributing them to Oscar voters at all. The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has endorsed a plan to distribute about 6,000 special DVD players to members. Specially encrypted discs, known as screeners, would be earmarked for a specific academy voter and would play only on that person's machine.

"It's extremely impressive," said academy President Frank Pierson. "It certainly looked foolproof to us." (ed. famous last words.)

The player also would imprint an invisible watermark on the disc each time it is viewed. In addition, if someone uses a camcorder to tape the movie as it is playing on a monitor, that image would contain information on the person assigned the machine."

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