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Friday, 12 July, 2002, 09:57 GMT 10:57 UK
Homer says hack your DVD player
The Simpsons, Fox
Homer Simpson: Husband, father and cyber-anarchist
Homer Simpson, cartoon character and a role model for millions, has been caught telling consumers to hack their DVD players.

On the UK website of Simpsons' distributor Fox, Homer advises visitors to get around the copyright restrictions that limit where DVDs can be played.

The advice appears in a Q&A section that uses Homer and his daughter Lisa to explain the intricacies of DVDs to visitors.

Typically, DVD players are tied to a particular geographical region and may not play discs produced for different areas.

Disc error

The regional system was introduced to help film studios manage the release of movies on disc.


But it is essential that you buy a multi-region player. Do it now

Homer Simpson
However, many consumers have found that DVD players will play discs from outside their home region.

Many websites detail exactly what consumers have to do to play any disc and help them to circumvent the control system.

In the past, film and media makers have supported the regional system, but the solid front seems to have been breached by Homer Simpson.

On the fourth page of the DVD Q&A on the Fox website, Homer tells visitors to buy a multi-region DVD, contradicting the public statements of the company that funds the cartoon he appears in.

"I have no idea whatsoever what regional coding means," says Homer on the site.

"But it is essential that you buy a multi-region player. Do it now."

You cannot be serious

A spokesman for Fox UK denied that the advice marked a change in the company line.


This interview has been written in very much the same irreverent and humorous tone of The Simpsons itself

Spokesman, Fox UK
"There is absolutely no change on Fox policy on regional protection for DVD's," a spokesman for Fox UK told BBC News Online.

"Not only does this 'advice' come after admitting his complete ignorance, it is implicit, through the fact it is Homer Simpson (a well-known ignoramus), that this is meant to be humorous and not to be taken seriously," he said.

The spokesman said that other comments made by Mr Simpson in the Q&A reveal that he was in no position to counsel consumers.

"Homer offers more advice along the lines of: 'TV's are not needed to view DVDs' and 'they make excellent frisbees or coasters', to further indicate that this interview has been written in very much the same irreverent and humorous tone of The Simpsons itself," he said.

Homer's gaffe was first brought to public attention by technology news website The Register.

See also:

02 May 02 | Entertainment
13 Jan 00 | Entertainment
10 Nov 00 | Entertainment
17 Jan 02 | Entertainment
16 Apr 02 | Entertainment
21 Nov 01 | Entertainment
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