California's Supreme Court has ruled that a Texas man cannot be sued in California for posting a program on the internet that could be used to decode copyrighted DVDs.
The court ruled that, although the DVD Copy Control Association could still sue Matthew Pavlovich for posting the code-breaking program in 1999, it would have to do it in his home state of Texas.
The Association, which sued for trade secret infringement, had argued that Pavlovich should face a lawsuit in California because the movie industry is based in that state and faces the most harm from the illegal copying of DVDs.
DeCSS, the program in question, is free software that allows people to play DVDs without restrictions, such as regional codes.
Cindy Cohn, legal director at the Electronic Frontier Foundation, said: "Pavlovich had no connections with California whatsoever.
"This decision clearly puts to rest the notion that you can drag someone into a California court simply because he should have known that a web publication could harm Hollywood."
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