If you know anything about tech, then you will understand the term ‘jailbreaking’ mostly this means to modify (a smartphone or other electronic device) to remove restrictions imposed by the manufacturer or operator, e.g. to allow the installation of unauthorized software.
The question is, though, is this legal or illegal? The answer to this issue is a little confusing. Morally perhaps it is a natural question to ask, if you are using a jailbroken site to download or stream movies that are playing in the cinema, then you are taking away money from the writer and artists. This is like me coming to your work, stealing your services without you knowing and then going to the next shop and doing the same.
Not all jailbreaks are illegal, though. In 2015 the US Congress issued a new set of exemptions to a provision in the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. It was a small success for the people who enjoy tinkering with their devices but would like to stay within the law. Congress meets every 36 months to make these decisions, so the current ones will only stand until 2018. These provisions have made it illegal in the past to unlock your smartphone from its carrier or even to share your HBO Go password with a friend. It's designed to let corporations protect copyrighted material, but it allows them to crackdown on circumventions even when they're not infringing on those copyrights or trying to access or steal proprietary information.
So, what can you do? Well, you can unlock your smartphone or tablet, and this also applies to wifi hotspots or wearable devices that have cellular connections. You cannot jailbreak e-readers, handheld gaming devices, or laptops and desktop computers. Getting confused, us too. Are we allowed to jailbreak our Amazon Firesticks? Who knows!
There are a number of streaming apps available and by looking at the new laws it would seem like jailbreaking your phone or using these sites on a handheld device is entirely ok which is ok for companies like Movie Box and excellent news for you, as you can stream movies to your phone, and then, we assume, use your phone to cast them to your TV.
So, you can jailbreak your car software too. The ruling comes after a concerted effort by the Electronic Frontier Foundation, which filed for two exemptions that are now more relevant than ever in the wake of the Volkswagen emissions scandal.
The EFF wanted to ensure companies and individuals could develop or use third-party diagnostic tools that bypass restrictions placed on the vehicle by its manufacturer, as well as allow security researchers to study possible exploits in a car's onboard computer system. The exemptions don't go into effect for an entire year, which the EFF said was "disappointing" and "unjustified" in an interview with Ars Technica.
We think the laws for jailbreaking are going to change a lot and they are different depending which country you are in. The best way to ensure you are safe is to check on reputable sources regularly and see what you are and are not allowed to do. The last thing you want is to need your mates to plot their jailbreak to get you out of the clink!
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