According to the Associated Press and other sources, the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the Washington, D.C., District today ruled that the FCC had overstepped its bounds in requiring the so-called broadcast flag to be recognized by TV sets. The actual appeals court decision is here [PDF file, 34 pages] thanks to Publicknowledge.org, one of the appellants.
Snippets from the AP story via Excite.com:
"This opens up the future for consumers to have more wide-ranging video experiences," said Art Brodsky, a spokesman for Washington-based Public Knowledge, a consumers group. "They will be able to take advantage of new products and features that won't be dictated to them by the entertainment industry."
The controversial rules were challenged by consumer groups, including library associations. Their lawyers complained the FCC requirement would drive up prices of digital television devices and prevent consumers from recording programs in ways permitted under copyright laws.
The technology, known as the broadcast flag, would have been required after July 1 for televisions equipped to receive new digital signals, many personal computers and VCR-type recording devices. It would permit entertainment companies to designate, or flag, programs to prevent viewers from copying shows or distributing them over the Internet.