Back when we would record onto VHS, is that considered piracy? Found a super bowl XXXI tape from my Uncle circa 1997. I’m curious lol.

Also side note, have any of you dabbled in digitizing old VHS? Have quite a few home videos on VHS and I’m wanting to preserve them for the future. I’ve done a bit of research and have come across a wide array of information. I know that doesn’t really qualify as piracy, if there’s a better comm for this, please direct me there!

    • Kecessa@sh.itjust.works
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      2 months ago

      For personal use, so not for distribution and a copy made on your own, not procured from someone else, right?

      • synthsalad@mycelial.nexus
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        2 months ago

        The Wikipedia article has these relevant quotes from the court opinion:

        The question is thus whether the Betamax is capable of commercially significant noninfringing uses … one potential use of the Betamax plainly satisfies this standard, however it is understood: private, noncommercial time-shifting in the home.[7] […] [W]hen one considers the nature of a televised copyrighted audiovisual work… and that time-shifting merely enables a viewer to see such a work which he had been invited to witness in its entirety free of charge, the fact… that the entire work is reproduced… does not have its ordinary effect of militating against a finding of fair use.[8]

        • Kecessa@sh.itjust.works
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          2 months ago

          So yeah, private, non commercial, in the home, for content you would have otherwise been able to see for yourself in the past by the “regular” means available to you.

          Which is vastly different from going on the internet and downloading a movie with your favorite torrent program when you wouldn’t have otherwise been able to see it…

  • GeekFTW@lemmy.zip
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    2 months ago

    Partially off-topic but I rarely get the chance to tell this story:

    My old man was a porn hound. Talking wall of VHS tapes. You know what I’m picturing, that was his living room. Had 4 VCR’s hooked up at once with several switches, a few switchboards for colour and audio correction, whole 9 yards. Lost an eye when I was a kid so always wanted to make his viewing ‘optimal’ for him.

    What he’d end up doing was go down to the local Variety Video, rent 5-6 tapes, come home, and dub em over the weekend. Then once dubbed, remove the label with some heat, open the cassettes (the og and the copy he made) and swap the reels so he’d have the original one (which would be ever-so-slightly better quality than the copy he made, again, cause of his sight). Then seal em up, return the copy and no one was the wiser. Did this for close to 15 years before the place closed down (for unrelated reasons) and had his huge wall of big titty wank material for years to come lmao.

  • kbal@fedia.io
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    2 months ago

    “I say to you that the VCR is to the American film producer and the American public as the Boston strangler is to the woman home alone.” — Jack Valenti, MPAA president, 1982

    • JasonDJ@lemmy.zip
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      2 months ago

      You wouldn’t download a serial killer.

      But you could download countless murder-mystery audiobooks and ebooks from Libby, so that’s a close second.

  • Neato@ttrpg.network
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    2 months ago

    The VCR was invented, marketed, and sold to do this very thing. When the VCR first came out (same for betamax) they didn’t sell pre-recorded tapes because the only way they had to make those was to manually record them individually in real-time which was prohibitively expensive. That’s also why movie rental places caught on: early VHS movies were too expensive for most to afford. But not too expensive for a business to rent hundreds of times.

    Suffice to say: if recording TV was piracy, it wasn’t illegal and the people bitching had no way to enforce their will.

      • ivanafterall@kbin.social
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        2 months ago

        My modded original Xbox was magical. Rent a game from Hollywood Video, rip it straight to the Xbox hard drive, return it.

      • cmnybo
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        2 months ago

        Pre-recorded tapes usually had a primitive form of copy protection called macrovision. It would make the copy pretty much unwatchable, but it was fairly simple to remove. You could build or buy a device that would strip it out.

        • bobs_monkey@lemm.ee
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          Yup, those little inline filters. Even building the circuit for $5-10 in RadioShack parts was pretty simple.

  • Admiral Patrick@dubvee.org
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    2 months ago

    Everything that gives people non-gatekept access to any media is considered “piracy” by the powers that be.

    'Home taping is killing music' written above a cassette tape with crossed bones beneath

    That propaganda image is from the 80s.

    Re: NFL

  • Banzai51@midwest.social
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    2 months ago

    Only if you sold it. Back when cassette tapes first came out, the mystic music industry sued, and the Supreme Court ruled it fair use. So VHS tapes were under the same umbrella. We wouldn’t get that same ruling now.

    Holy hell, that was one hell of an autocorrect on mobile.

      • Trailblazing Braille Taser@lemmy.dbzer0.com
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        2 months ago

        The implications of “magic is data” are fun. It leads to stories like Unsong where you can brute-force enumerate incantations until you find a good one. I also like the concept of Wizard’s Bane. I haven’t read it, but my understanding is that magic turns out to be Turing-complete, and the protagonist creates a LISP evaluator in magic, which enables them to outcast their enemies who are still doing the magical equivalent of writing assembly.

        • Strayce@lemmy.sdf.org
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          2 months ago

          You’d probably also enjoy The Laundry Files. Math is magic, and while you -can- do it in your head, using computers is a lot safer and more efficient. Includes such gems as a basilisk gun integrated into CCTV camera systems.

  • BolexForSoup@kbin.social
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    2 months ago

    Recording home videos for personal use within your immediate family was protected. Screening for people beyond that was not. Mr. Rogers famously gave us what little protection we had and insured that we could even have home VHS recorders. Testified before a congressional committee that was on the verge of banning it, changed one critical mind and that stopped it.

    • ares35@kbin.social
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      2 months ago

      ad-skip to present day. encryption and drm is being introduced into the new atsc 3.0 broadcast standard, and some stations are already using it.

      • BolexForSoup@kbin.social
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        2 months ago

        The beauty of working in video production is I always have a tool I can run stuff through for very legal and very cool capture purposes.

  • greentreerainfire@kbin.social
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    2 months ago

    Not an answer to your question, but in the 80s/early 90s my grandmother used to tape movies off the tv, I believe she actually copied VCR to VCR so she could make a copy without commercials. She’d then cut out the description from the TV Guide, and scotch tape it to the top of the video cassette tape.

    • Dharma Curious@slrpnk.net
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      Oh damn, that TV guide tip is genius! We used to handwrite on a post it and then cover it with packing tape to kind of laminate it.

      My folks were also too cheap/broke to buy blank VHS tapes, so we used to get regular movies at yard sales and cover the little tab area with electrical tape. Lol.

  • chatokun@lemmy.dbzer0.com
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    2 months ago

    My brother and I (mostly him, just helped a small bit) used to distribute Anime this way. He’d buy laserdiscs of Anime like Rurouni Kenshin (OVA/Prequel)and Yu Yu Hakushou, then download translations for subtitles and time them on the computer, using a bluescreen pass through and onto some SVHS VCRs. From those two SVHS VCRs, he’d use 9 others to copy them onto VHS tapes for distribution via mail. He’d charge cost iirc, not making profit on it.

    I’m 100% sure it would be considered piracy if the companies had a way to find out. Plus VHS tapes had piracy warnings on them back then anyway.

  • kingthrillgore@lemmy.ml
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    2 months ago

    You know what I think is funny? The NFL doesn’t have any footage of Super Bowl 1, the only known tape of the game is held by a private collector, but he can’t watch it due to the NFL copyright. So its sitting in an Iron Mountain facility in the Poconos. And its deteriorating.

  • Noerttipertti@sopuli.xyz
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    2 months ago

    I presume from superb owl that you are from USA.
    No. It was deemed legal and fair use as was recording radio on c-cassettes.
    Considering digitizing, Web stores are full of usb capture dongles and rca/scart adapters. Obs and Videolan are free and easy to use.
    For editing, Openshot is free and quite easy to use.
    All these are available on Windows, Linux and Mac.

    • Kichae@lemmy.ca
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      2 months ago

      It was deemed legal and fair use after the film and music industries sued VCR manufacturers and users.

      So yeah, it absolutely was considered piracy by the media production and distribution companies. The courts disagreeing with them doesn’t change that.

      • Neato@ttrpg.network
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        2 months ago

        This may just be a semantic argument. Media production can consider it piracy, but that’s irrelevant as it had no legal standing. Without a law prohibiting something, it’s legal. And the fact that they sued and lost means it was never illegal and the media companies can declare it “piracy” or “treason against Columbia Pictures” or whatever they want until they’re blue in the face but no one cares.

  • adhocfungus@midwest.social
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    2 months ago

    It was definitely considered piracy by the public at the time. Everyone I knew called it a “legal grey area”, but as far as I know it was legally permissable.

    The media companies tried their hardest to make it sound like you were destroying the entire industry and you’d go to jail for life as soon as they caught you.

    What makes me mad is the boomers I watched copy rentals and NFL games are the same ones telling me I’m stealing by using an ad blocker.