After being predictably sued by a bunch of Hollywood movie studios last week, RealNetworks has been forced to halt sales of its new DVD ripping and archiving product, RealDVD. The shutdown is a temporary one, though, with the judge expected to review all the paperwork related to the case by tomorrow and decide whether or not to continue the order.
The MPAA is alleging a violation of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act and breach of contract. Real, on the other hand, claims the application does not actually break CSS, as it merely copies the disc, including CSS, bit for bit with the decryption residing in the player. While DVD ripping tools have existed almost as long as DVD discs, this is one of the first efforts by a mainstream company to try to make such software legal. In the end, all this is probably just doing what RealNetworks wanted to achieve in the first place: generate controversy and free publicity for its product.