23rd nov, 2009

Selling Mod Chips is a Copyright Offence

Since I bought my first Playstation I have been reading about mod chips, but never had any of my own consoles modded (even though I was close w my first PS 2 to get it to play my international movies). 

Copyright owners have been trying to stop the modding of course to prevent pirated games and movies from being distributed. 

Different national courts have ruled differently whether the production and sale of chips are legal or not (eg. Italy: legal, Australia: legal, US: maybe). 


A recent decision in UK has determined that selling mod chips is a copyright offence. Between 2003 and 2006 the offender had been selling mod chips to most available consoles. The issue at hand was whether the chips enabled copying of a substantial part of the work. The court applied a “little and often test” and also pointed out that the pictures shown on the screen was a substantial infringement in itself. So the appeal was dismissed. 


I see a lot of Danish websites advertising mod chips, but I have no knowledge of any Danish cases regarding mod chips. In my opinion the results from a Danish case would be the same as the UK case (Danish Copyright law § 75b + c). An article on Computerworld from 2002 does not seem to have generated any follow ups.


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