Thursday, September 22, 2005

DVD Virus

For some years now I've known of friends who have gone on trips to areas such as Thailand or Bali and have come back with pirated goods ranging from polo shirts to Rolex watches. Some have also come back with literally hundreds of slim packed DVD's of films that haven't even come out in New Zealand yet, for which they claim they pay the usual $2 for.

While I have always been slightly jealous of their access to this supply of great 'goodies' a recent article I read on a the Digital Digest site slightly helped me in getting over this jealousy. Apparently there is now a ‘DVD virus’ going round that is being put in many of these DVD’s. When inserted the virus loads onto the DVD player overwriting it’s ‘firmware’ (the software that makes it run) rendering it totally unusable. The only way that this can be fixed is if the DVD player is returned to the manufacturer and the ‘firmware’ replaced.

Although this problem will never affect me, as I don’t have access to this method of buying DVD’s, it made me think about the possibility of film studios developing this virus and putting it out onto the world piracy market to get back at those using pirated DVDs. Although this would obviously bring up ethical questions, it would be quite an effective way of curbing DVD piracy, and one that we may see be developed in the future.

Alisdair Hungerford-Morgan


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