Optical Disc Piracy
Compact Disc or VCD is an
of this same technology and was developed by Philips Electronics and
in 1993. This format, which has
become popular mainly in Asia, allows for up to one hour of full motion video and 2 channels of digital audio to be contained on one 12 cm disc (two discs
are required for most Hollywood movies). The discs can be played on VCD players, computers equipped with a CD-ROM drive and some models of DVD
Versatile Disc or Digital
Disc, known simply as DVD was launched initially in 1996. At the
time, several groups were independently
developing higher capacity disc formats.
the assistance of the movie
industry, Sony, Philips, Toshiba and Time Warner came together and
on an international standard
that has become known as DVD.
DVD is the same diameter as
(12 cm) but, by using a laser with a shorter wavelength of light, the
capacity of one layer is greatly
increased. In order to accommodate two hours or more of full motion video on a single disc, a dual layer structure is used, read by two different laser
This increased storage capacity allows for additional features such as enhanced Multilanguage soundtracks and digital surround sound encoding.
1. Date Of Release
2. Physical Attributes
inferior quality of printing
disc surface, jewel case inserts (VCD) and slip-sleeve cover (DVD) as
as the lack of original artwork and
missing studio and distributor logos on discs and packaging are usually a clear give away that the product is pirated.
Even when higher quality sources are used, there may still be clues that indicate the copy is pirated, e.g. the start and/or ending is truncated or screen characters and/or artwork generated by equipment used to make the copy is visible on the television screen.
In addition to the previous information relating to optical discs in general, pirate DVD’s may be identified by the lack of the appropriate Region Code. One common error made by pirates is that they usee the ‘ALL’ or ‘0’ code for the Regional Zone. Legitimate DVDs Manufactured for sale in North America will usually have either a symbol indicated Zone 1 or will have this information specifically spelled out on the packaging.
The lower cost of DVD recorders or 'burners' and blank recordable DVD (DVD-R and DVD+R) media has led to an influx of 'burned discs' in the pirate marketplace. These extemely cheap 'knockoffs' sell for as low as $3.00 or $4.00 each and quite often contain movies copied from theatre screens using a hand held camcorder. Recordable media is a format that is not used by any legitimate motion picture distributor and consumers should be warned that discs using this format may not be compatable with their DVD players. 'Burned' discs are readily distinguishable from factory produced 'pressed' discs by the dintinctive dye layer that ranges in colour from dark blue/purple to dark red.
It is a violation under Section 42(1) of the Copyright Act for any person to duplicate video products (videocassettes, DVDs, VCDs, etc.) of copyrighted works for sale or rental. It is also a fraud violation under Section 380 of the Criminal Code of Canada.
Persons convicted of engaging in the unauthorized duplication and/or distribution of video products face paying a heavy price. For example, if a person is found making, distributing or importing for rental or sale or selling or renting out pirated video products, that individual may be subject to criminal convictions bearing fines to a maximum of $25,000 per count or charge upon summary conviction and up to $1,000,000 for an indictable offence, plus imprisonment.
Convicted pirates are subject to seizure of all illegal copies, the equipment used to make them and the legitimate copies that were used as "masters". All items seized are usually forfeited or destroyed.
Guilty parties can also be subject to civil actions for damages.
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