Dane who ripped his DVDs demands to be arrested under DRM law

In Denmark, it's legal to make copies of commercial videos for backup or other private purposes. It's also illegal to break the DRM that restricts copying of DVDs. Deciding to find out which law mattered, Henrik Anderson reported himself for 100 violations of the DRM-breaking law (he ripped his DVD collection to his computer) and demanded that the Danish anti-piracy Antipiratgruppen do something about. They promised him a response, then didn't respond. So now he's reporting himself to the police. He wants a trial, so that the legality of the DRM-breaking law can be tested in court.
However, in the period up to today, Henrik heard nothing from Antipiratgruppen, although their lawyer Thomas Schlüter did speak to the Danish press, saying that it was a political matter but had nevertheless reported the issue to the Association of Danish Videodistributors for consideration. In response, their chairman, Poul Dylov, said they would have a meeting to decide whether to report the matter to the police. Antipiratgruppen said it would reply to Henrik by they date he requested. It seems they have broken their promise and strangely are insisting that they never received the email that Henrik sent them on the issue...

Henrik told us: "But who should I follow? Those that determine the laws in this country? Or those who are lawyers for the companies that i'm committing a crime against?"

But Henrik has a solution to their inaction. "I decided to try to see if I can report myself directly to the police, for the case must be resolved," he told us.

Anti-Piracy Group Refuses Bait, DRM Breaker Goes To Police


  1. Now this– this is the way to protest. Looking at people marching on the street, there is always something missing. If you want results, put your money where your mouth is.

    Bravo. I look forward to updates.

  2. I have a new hero! Props to Henrik for taking this up. Hopefully he gets his trial and it’s more fun to follow that the PirateBay one.

    1. It proves how stupid the law is, and practically necessitates it be overturned legislatively. I have no doubt that the man has discussed this possibility with his lawyers. I doubt it would come to that. IANAL and I know nothing about the Danish legal system, but here in the US it would at least compel the courts to clarify interpretation of the law- since there is an obvious contradiction.

    2. If he gets fined, I will help him pay the fines.

      In fact, I predict a paypal account will be set up within four hours of his conviction, and the money it will garner will so far outstrip his fines that this Danish fellow will be able to use the remaining money to do even more good!

  3. Most of this conflict boils down to Hollywood vs. everyone else.

    Danish law is probably based in technological history and fact — combined with consumer rights vs. (mostly foreign) producer rights.

    After all, why should any country’s government prioritise Hollywood’s agenda over that of their own voters unless they receive massive bribes to subsidise them after they’re voted out of office?

  4. I love how none of the entities in the know about this have filed charges against him – they’re like “you can’t do that, you probably know that, but we ain’t touching this problem with at ten-foot pole!”

    Also Antipiratgruppen knows it’s basically impossible to prove wrong-doing in these cases; I’m really looking forward to seeing how this plays out.

  5. On behalf of the Pirate Party of Canada, I would like to announce that we are 100% behind this individual, and hope that this will be the first of many cases, in which DRM and IP laws are found to be as pointless and idiotic as we all know them to be.

    Jake Daynes
    Leader of the Pirate Party of Canada
    Chef du Parti Pirate du Canada

  6. Ah, but he’s not just breaking a law to show that he disagrees with it. He’s showing that the law is paradoxical: he can take backups legally but not without breaking DRM illegally. What’s a guy to do? One of the two laws has to give, and he’s shoving *that* in the spotlight.

  7. well, actually it’s stupid.

    the law to make private backups existed before DRM, let’s say to make backups of your music cassettes. Now DRM exists, so you may make backups of anything, as long as you don’t break any other laws, so yes, making backups of DVD’s is tricky, without breaking the law.

    let me rephrase:

    yes, it’s legal to drive a car, but it’s not legal to drive it faster than the signs allow…. so how am i gonna drive my car, without driving too fast? we’ll learn to read the signs and use the breaks or don’t drive at all.

    yes, it’s legal to have a picasso in your living room, but you cannot go stealing it so you can after that legally have it hanging in your living room….

    I bet there are some better examples…

    1. Actually it’s not like that at all since in this case you cannot actually do A to any degree without violating B. With the car you can do A (drive) to a degree without being in violation of b (speed limits). Now if it were you have the right to drive but it is illegal to turn on your car then we’re in the same situation here.

  8. It really shows how stupid the law is, and practically necessitates it be overturned legislatively. I can understand from the article that the man ha discussed this possibility with his lawyers. I doubt it would come to that. IANAL and I know nothing about the Danish legal system, but in the US it would at least compel the courts to clarify interpretation of the law- since there is an obvious contradiction

  9. Would he be allowed to copy the movie by pointing his digital camera at the monitor/screen and taping it that way? Seems like a primitive way to go about things.

    1. Would it be any different if I ripped my vinyl LPs to my computer as opposed to downloading those same songs from Limewire?

  10. @lovemycoffeehouse

    The only problem with protesting by breaking the law, especially on the courthouse steps, is how violently the police tend to respond. I’ve watched countless videos of the results of such protests. Maybe you can argue that the protests worked to raise awareness since so many people will be stirred up by the videos of police beating the protesters with batons, shooting them with stun guns and bullets, and arresting as many of them as possible.

    Sadly, these things don’t normally end well. I’m not saying we shouldn’t stand up for things we believe in. I’m just appreciating how brave you have to be and mentioning that you should keep in mind that while you’re protesting by bending or breaking the rules, the police might also bend or break the rules they’re supposed to follow in response. It may not have a storybook ending.

  11. I’ve had an idea for a while… What would happen if everyone who has ever ripped a DVD or broken any sort of DRM came forward and turned themselves in at the same time. How would the law makers handle it?

  12. 1) users have right to make personal copy


    2) users cannot legally copy because of blocks


    The blocks are illegal. And companies are outlaw!!!!

    This is logic And it is Soooooo simple :)

    Any impediment to a user right is illegal, by definition of “right”. If I have the right to do it, and you stop me, it is a violation to my right.

    The funny thing is that it was not so, before the majors had the DRM law approved. I could legally, with some skill and effort, make personal copies, so their blocks were still almost legal. But now, with their fantastic DRM law thew wanted so bad, copy protections become illegal and THEY (the majors) should be prosecuted.

  13. well – according to Danish law (as interpreted in accrodance with Scandinavian rulings on a similar issue) you are entitled to rip dvd’s – including overriding content protection – if it is “necessary” for you to view the content.

    I am assuming that it is not necessary for Henrik to rip the dvd’s – he could actually just pop it in the computer and view it from the disc rather than watching a digital/ripped copy.

    thats why Henriks actions are illegal in theory and according to current case-law.

    However – these rules are inconsistent and ridiculusly worded. Why are you able to circumvent content protection if you don’t have the opportunity to watch directly from the disc (or bought your disc in the US in which you have to circumvent the regional protection)? it’s a stupid and illogical rule – but nonetheless the current state of the law.

    what Henrik doesn’t realize is that it’s not a criminal offence to rip 100 DVD’s. Even if they wanted to – the police can do nothing about it. he will never get his day in court and – frankly – he should stop pissing away taxpayer money by bothering the police with this kind of crap. Write a letter to the ministry of culture and hope they will react. …and get a life…

Comments are closed.