Jailbreaking your iPhone or other mobile device will no longer violate
federal copyright law, the U.S. Copyright Office ruled Monday.
The decision, part of a process
that takes place every three years, said that bypassing a manufacturer’s
protection mechanisms to allow “handsets to execute software applications” is
The Copyright Office also allowed bypassing the anticopying technology used
in DVDs, but only for “documentary filmmaking,” noncommercial videos, and
educational uses–a ruling that stopped short of allowing Americans to legally
make a backup copy for their own use, in case the original DVD gets damaged. It
also doesn’t apply to making backup copies of videogame discs or Blu-Ray discs.