CD Burners
Illegal Uses

Although CD burners have their legal and legitimate applications, they clearly can make violating copyrights much easier. As stated in the background section, anything that can be incorporated into an image file can be "burned" into a CD. When researching CD burners on the web, one stumbles across questions posted on newsgroups regarding collecting a group of MP3 files and burning them into a CD (which violates the copyright for the music), how to make direct copies of CD's containing software, and how to replicate video games using CD burning. All of which have received very informative and instructive answers as to how to complete the process.

CD burning makes it possible to violate copyrights on two levels by (1) including copyrighted material in as part of your image or (2) using CD burning technology to make a direct copy of a pre-existing and copyrighted CD.

The above discussion may seem to imply that CD burning is a small issue or that the scope of the problem is limited. It is not. One can find many instances of individuals and "companies" on the web that are in the business of pirating software and other copyrighted material, burning it onto CDs, and selling it for a lower cost that the original version. This type of operation has experienced an increase recently and, consequently, the number of copyright violations enabled by CD burners has increased.

NEXT: Proposed Solutions

MPEG Layer 3   |   Emulation
Search Engines and Directories   |   CD Burners


Ted LeVan   |   Huat Chye Lim   |   Marissa Mayer   |   Ann Rose Van

Computer Science 201 Final Project
Stanford University, March 1999