One of our insiders has let us know that the AACS Final Adopter Agreement went discreetly online on June 5, without any fanfare or announcement. AACS (Advanced Access Content System) is the content protection scheme for Blu-ray, just like CSS is for DVD. It has been operating on an interim license agreement since inception, and a final agreement was long overdue.
The document is long (80 pages plus 108 pages of exhibits, tables and attachments) and abstruse, but something that stands out is that Managed Copy continues to be part of the license, despite persistent rumors that this feature would be eventually dropped outright. Of course, Managed Copy is subject to a transaction and specific terms to be fixed by the studios.
Restrictions of the use of analog video outputs are further detailed. Use of the Image Constraint Token (limiting image resolution to 540p over analog) will have to be reported on the packaging and/or publicity materials. The Digital Only Token (prohibiting all image output over analog) will be very limited in use, mainly for non-consumer products and discs released less than six weeks after theatrical release of the title.
The "Analog Sunset" will be staggered. New players after December 31, 2010 must limit analog video output of BD content to interlaced standard definition (480i/576i). Then, 2013 is the expiration date for analog video: no player that passes "Decrypted AACS Content" to analog video outputs may be manufactured or sold after December 31, 2013.
If I understand these rules correctly, Dec 31st 2013 is the expiration for analog video outputs, all BLU-RAY players manufactured after December 31st 2013 will completely disable the analog video outputs like component video, S-Video, and composite when playing a BLU-RAY disc. By then most people will own displays with HDMI and DVI inputs. This is a security method to protect against piracy using the 480 I S-Video output, etc.
Is it just me? Everytime that I read the word 'Advanced', it's usually up to no good.
When I read words like, quote: "Restrictions ... Constraint ... limiting ... prohibiting ... must limit", the hairs in my neck start rising. What happened to freedom of speach, communication and transferring information and knowledge?
My personal wish would be the total free(dom) of all direct or recorded text,images,video without the possibility to copyright, and go back to the times where the willingness of communication and sharing of information was from a tutor/artist/political perspective as opposed to a money-making perspective. Probably never going to happen, though.
andreeasy: Did you hear about the analog OTA phase out? No? Well do your research and then figure out if analog signal will still be transmitted by 2013. And actually, downward compatibility IS what's coming. What you probably meant was backwards compatibility.
gekke: Entertainment has little to do with information and knowledge. Producing entertainment costs money and as such, the copyright holders have the right to get back at least the money they invested in. R&D is knowledge but you don't see a website where all companies publish the results of their latest R&D, do you? Last I check, MOST teachers and artists don't work for free.
Maybe I mixed up the words (I'm German, so I'm sorry if I used the words wrong). What I meant is that from 2014 on no analog signal from an AACS content disc will be allowed to be passed from a blu-ray player (not even in SD !). And that sucks IMHO, 'cause by then you'll have no more analog fallback option if, for example, your HDMI input is broken, you want to connect (maybe just to check something) to an older display or beamer or you just need the analog connection.
In my opinion it's already a bad idea to limit the resolution from 2011 just for copyright reasons, if there's no technical need for it...
If I got some facts wrong or misunderstood your comment, please correct me.