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A follow up… RealNetworks settles RealDVD case, drops product, pays $4.5m

RealNetworks says it has settled the litigation over RealDVD, its software for making copies of DVDs on PC hard drives, agreeing to a permanent injunction against sales of the product and paying $4.5 million in legal costs and other fees to six major Hollywood studios and others that challenged the technology.

Here’s our previous post from 2008….

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RealDVD is being touted as one of the only legal ways to “back up” DVDs. It seems to make a copy on your drive, keeps the DRM and adds more Real player style DRM. Here’s the funny part about all this – awhile back (1999) a ton of people were sued and got in trouble for trying to back up their DVDs, it still happens to this day although rare. That said you can’t build a DVD jukebox without getting sued. Most people nowadays rip DVDs using many of the free open source tools (lots of posts on MAKE about that). Back to 1999, when the encryption(s) on the DVDs were broken allowing copies to be made (DeCSS) – they key actually came from the XingDVD player, from Xing Technologies, a subsidiary of RealNetworks. I’m pretty sure to this day 2600 magazine cannot even link to the DeCSS program, source, or anything. I’m sticking with HandBrake.

Looks like I’m still sticking with handbrake… Makers, what do you use to rip DVDs? Or are you busy making things instead of archiving movies? :)

Phillip Torrone

Editor at large – Make magazine. Creative director – Adafruit Industries, contributing editor – Popular Science. Previously: Founded – Hack-a-Day, how-to editor – Engadget, Director of product development – Fallon Worldwide, Technology Director – Braincraft.


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