Breaking the law?

My impending move overseas has me shrinking my physical possessions as much as possible.

One thing I certainly don’t need is all these scratchably shiny plastic discs. They’re safer and smaller and quicker as mere data on my various computery things.

Getting them there fantastically simple with The Little App Factory’s Ripit, however it is somewhat legally questionable.

All my CDs live on my computer and phone and iPad and backblaze and iTunes Match. Legally. I think.

All my DVDs now live on an external hard-drive. Apparently less legally - according to a googled forum post and Consumer. When I read through the copyright act it seems far less obvious than our dear friends at consumer would have us believe.

Even if my ripped DVDs are qualify technically as infringing copies (not clear to begin with), it still doesn’t appear to me they are criminally infringing copies (I’m not distributing them in any way, and the economic consequence of any such “infringement” is effectively zero1). If something isn’t criminally infringing is it infringing at all? I’m certainly not doing anything unreasonable, unfair, or unethical.

This is the first time I’ve read actual legislation so I’m probably entirely wrong and opening myself up to completely unreasonable fines and jail time.


I just realised wonderful unintentional ironies in the discs visible on the various piles.
The Creative Commons licensed Ghosts I-IV by Nine Inch Nails, The Forbidden Kingdom - a tale of inspiration from dodgy copies of Kung Fu movies, and, of course, Pirates of the Caribbean.

  1. The only consquence I can see is that Air New Zealand will miss out on the ~$200 I won’t need to pay for an additional bag.