Page last updated at 02:58 GMT, Thursday, 9 February 2006

Digital film: Industry answers

Some of the leading figures in the global film industry have answered your questions about movies in the digital age.

The BBC News website asked for your queries about the way new technology is being used - and the eight sharpest and most pertinent questions were put to the virtual panel.

Click on each question to read the answers.


Seeing as only one clever hacker is needed for films to appear on P2P networks, is it fair to say that digital rights management (DRM) does not prevent or even reduce piracy? If that's not fair to say, can you tell us of a single instance in which DRM has prevented a copyrighted film from appearing on these networks? Dave Morris, Oxford, UK

  • Dan Glickman, Motion Picture Association of America:

    No, it is not correct to assume that one clever hack dooms all use of DRM. Content owners use DRMs because it provides casual, honest users with guidelines for using and consuming content based on the usage rights that were acquired. Without the use of DRMs, honest consumers would have no guidelines and might eventually come to totally disregard copyright and therefore become a pirate, resulting in great harm to content creators.

    DRMs' primary role is not about keeping copyrighted content off P2P networks. DRMs support an orderly market for facilitating efficient economic transactions between content producers and content consumers.

  • Lavinia Carey, British Video Association:

    Digital rights management comes in all shapes and sizes. DRMs are becoming increasingly sophisticated and effective as a means of enabling consumers to access and use audiovisual content in a wider variety of ways that suit their tastes and habits. Watch out for the next generation of high definition discs, HD-DVD and Blu-ray, and content protection codes will be updated on a regular basis.

  • Curt Marvis, CinemaNow:

    As far as I know, no CinemaNow movies have appeared on P2P networks. Rather, P2P networks rely on people to 'rip' the film from a DVD, use a camcorder in the theatre or record the film from TV. So I would say that DRM is actually working, but the protection used on DVDs clearly is not.

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