By Lori Spencer


The landmark 1984 U.S. Supreme Court decision in Sony Corporation v. Universal City Studios (more widely known as the Betamax case) established the legality of home video recording. The court ruled that home VCR use did not infringe the rights of copyright holders, and that the plaintiffs would not suffer a substantial loss in profits because of home video recording. In this case, it was decided that recording a TV program for later home viewing met the “fair use” standard.

The ever-changing landscape of digital technology presents new legal questions for copyright holders and consumers alike. We’ll tackle a few of the most frequently asked ones.


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