Reverse-engineering challenge to DMCA struck down


An article on Yahoo recounts the story of U.S. District Judge Richard Stearns throwing out a request by an MIT student to allow him to decompile internet filtering software in order to determine what sites are being blocked.

The judge disagreed, stating ""there is no plausibly protected constitutional interest that Edelman can assert that outweighs N2H2's right to protect its copyrighted material from an invasive and destructive trespass."

Although this may seem reasonable, it is important to remember that after a hundred years of industry in this country, the DMCA is the first time that the government has gotten involved in the protection of trade secrets from forms of discovery other than theft by an insider.

Perhaps we'll now see a similar ruling protecting KFC from people using mass spectrometry to discover the ingredients in the "11 herbs and spices" or McDonalds from having their "secret sauce" revealed.