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Bringing Media to Singapore

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djfiii
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Bringing Media to Singapore

Postby djfiii » Tue, 13 Jul 2010 6:09 am

A preemptive note: I have searched and read the various threads regarding questions people posed about whether or not they would get away with pirating software, and the reception they received. So, I'd like to make it clear up front that my question is NOT an attempt along those lines. I have purchased everything I am considering taking with me. That said:

I have a media PC that sits next to my TV. It was quite a project for me, in that I extracted every DVD I own onto my hard drive, and converted each into .avi files. I still own all of the DVDs (200+), less about 10 that have managed to disappear over the years (scratched beyond use, lost, etc.)

My questions are:

1) Should I be concerned, in that the mere act of extracting the movies from DVD to hard drive is, I think, considered a violation of copyright by some? I had to break DRM in many cases to get the data off the DVD. I happen to feel that I can do whatever I want with it if I purchased the DVD, as long as it's of a personal nature and I don't distribute it. I'm not sure the MPAA, or the government of Singapore would agree.

2) Should I be further concerned about the few where I no longer have the original DVD to support my claim that I did in fact purchase it at some point in the past?

3) I guess I have the same question about my music, although most of it was purchased through iTunes and is in my iTunes library. I have no idea if, or how I could document that I legally obtained all of my music. There are over 3000 songs in my library, and have been accumulated over at least 10 years through a combination of ripped CD's and iTunes.

Just looking for some thoughts on this, since Singapore seems to be particularly harsh when one has been perceived to have broken a law. I'd prefer not to have to wipe my hard drive before I come over.

Thanks!

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Postby nakatago » Tue, 13 Jul 2010 10:29 am

Personally, I have not heard any anecdotes where Singapore inspected the contents of a media player, hard drive or any other storage device at the airport. Moreover, nobody has ever asked me about the contents of media devices whenever I pass through international borders.

This may or may not change in the future, though.

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Postby Mad Scientist » Tue, 13 Jul 2010 10:41 am

At border control, the ICA officers are looking for physical CD or DVDs that are pirated. Media Devices, Laptop for personal use are not part of it unless you have pornograhy media that can be assess in these devices.
Anti Piracy Law, IPOS, Intellectual property Office Singapore and Singapore Broadcasting Authority goes after distributors, manufacturer and companies that are involve in Media, Publishing and Internet Industries per se
Though Singapore Law one may seem draconian and harsh, I would not worry about yourself being flagged at the border
You worry too much . You can get caught if you are found downloading from the internet pirated software in SG
Read this link for more info
http://www.ipos.gov.sg/leftNav/cop
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Postby x9200 » Tue, 13 Jul 2010 10:43 am

I think you are pretty on the safe side and the likelihood of happening something less or more nasty in respect to IP law is negligible. The police here is pretty reasonable so for that area they mostly focus to hound after pirated DVD imported from the neighbouring countries.

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Postby Splatted » Tue, 13 Jul 2010 7:27 pm

If they check your stuff.... it'll be to see if you have any hidden cigarettes

BTW, I did same. Brought 2 tb worth of movies & tv series I owned as dvd's but were too bulky physically to carry with me

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Postby nakatago » Tue, 13 Jul 2010 8:22 pm

Someone told me that they use profiling to do random checks. Never bothered verifying though.

...I better practice speaking in a fake accent... :P

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Postby BigSis » Tue, 13 Jul 2010 8:44 pm

We brought all our DVDs over with us in the shipment and declared them on the forms, but nobody opened the boxes and checked the discs. My husband has a couple of reels of film that he uses for his job and has to carry them in his luggage when he travels for work (frequently!) and they never query them either, nor his laptop or anything like that.

Are you talking about bringing it in your shipment or luggage? Either way, I think you'll be fine with it.

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Postby djfiii » Tue, 13 Jul 2010 9:59 pm

Thanks for all the responses. I feel pretty comfortable about it now.

@BigSis: My media PC is a standup PC, so it will come in shipment, not my luggage. I will have a laptop as well, that will travel on the plane with me, but there will be no media on there.

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Postby carteki » Thu, 15 Jul 2010 1:57 pm

According to the distributors, the act of copying the material onto another form of media is piracy. They would like you to purchase the same material again when technology changes (ie Video / Cassette to DVD/CD) rather than just copying...

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Postby Saint » Thu, 15 Jul 2010 2:01 pm

carteki wrote:According to the distributors, the act of copying the material onto another form of media is piracy. They would like you to purchase the same material again when technology changes (ie Video / Cassette to DVD/CD) rather than just copying...


So I'm here listening to my iPod which is in theory illegal then?

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Postby carteki » Thu, 15 Jul 2010 2:12 pm

If you've purchased the tunes from the iShop - then you're okay. If you've ripped your cd's then its not. But that is according to the distributors, I'm not sure as to the technicalities of the law - which depends on your local jurisdiction. In South Africa you're legally allowed to make a back-up of your media (and its still valid if you "lose" ie return the original)

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Postby nakatago » Thu, 15 Jul 2010 2:13 pm

also according to them, you're not buying the item; you're purchasing a license. ripping CDs used to be ok (as long as you don't distribute the ripped tracks) until they realize everybody could do it now and that they could charge for every format they could shell out. these greedy dinosaurs are rewriting the concepts of fair use. hell; they're not even compensating the artists correctly, if at all, which they claim lose a lot if you don't dance to their tune.

http://arstechnica.com/old/content/2006/02/6190.ars

funny thing about ripping; almost all devices capable of playing digitally encoded tracks come with CD-ripping software which are still deemed legal.

And since the RIAA/MPAA only has "influence" in the United States, they're trying to get the whole world into their sway as well:

http://arstechnica.com/old/content/2008/06/the-real-acta-threat-its-not-ipod-scanning-border-guards.ars
http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/news/2009/11/the-acta-internet-provisions-dmca-goes-worldwide.ars
http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/news/2010/07/acta-so-transparent-the-text-still-has-to-be-leaked.ars

sorry for the lack of coherence, but these uber-greedy corporations just piss me off (re: my rant about not being able to legally download music)

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Postby Saint » Thu, 15 Jul 2010 2:25 pm

carteki wrote:If you've purchased the tunes from the iShop - then you're okay. If you've ripped your cd's then its not. But that is according to the distributors, I'm not sure as to the technicalities of the law - which depends on your local jurisdiction. In South Africa you're legally allowed to make a back-up of your media (and its still valid if you "lose" ie return the original)


Ok, copies of any legally purchased music may be made by it's owner as long as it's not distributed to other and is for personal use.

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Postby Splatted » Thu, 15 Jul 2010 11:49 pm

nakatago wrote:also according to them, you're not buying the item; you're purchasing a license. ripping CDs used to be ok (as long as you don't distribute the ripped tracks) until they realize everybody could do it now and that they could charge for every format they could shell out. these greedy dinosaurs are rewriting the concepts of fair use. hell; they're not even compensating the artists correctly, if at all, which they claim lose a lot if you don't dance to their tune.


At one stage Sony even marketted mini CD's for the purpose of backing up your music and listening to on the go (pre the existance of mp3 players)

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Postby djfiii » Fri, 16 Jul 2010 1:06 am

carteki wrote:According to the distributors, the act of copying the material onto another form of media is piracy. They would like you to purchase the same material again when technology changes (ie Video / Cassette to DVD/CD) rather than just copying...


Yes, I am aware of this and disagree with that interpretation (as do many others). Even though the MPAA and RIAA try to convince everyone that breaking DRM is illegal, the courts in the US have yet to uphold that opinion. Where courts have weighed in, is on the distribution of that material, not the actual ripping of it. I'm inclined to give a big middle finger to the opinion of profit seeking lobbyist groups that are not backed by court opinion.

My concern was how or if Singapore customs agents would interpret the laws, and if they would bother booting up my PC and asking me for documentation that I purchased all 3000+ songs, or asking to see every physical DVD that corresponds with every avi file on there. I have most of it, but in some cases I don't and I don't want to get tossed in the clink in my first 5 minutes there :)


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