DVD X Copy vendor shuts doors

Lawsuits have forced the closure of 321 Studios, a developer of software for copying DVDs, according to a notice posted on the company's Web site

"Despite 321 Studios' best efforts to remain in business, injunctions entered against 321 Studios by three U.S. Federal courts earlier this year has resulted in 321 Studios no longer being able to continue operating the business," the notice said.

Earlier this year, judges in California and New York found some of the software sold by 321 Studios to be illegal and ordered the company to stop selling the products, including its DVD X Copy program, which allows users to circumvent the copy protection on DVDs in order to make back-ups on recordable DVD or CD media.

When a number of video game companies also filed suit against 321 Studios in June, seeking to block distribution of its Games X Copy program, the company prepared to shut down, looking for third parties to manage an ongoing rebate scheme and to continue offering technical support for its products, a spokesman said at the time.

According to 321 Studios' Web site, customers can continue to access the online technical support database for its products until Aug. 1, 2005. The company has already discontinued its phone, e-mail and instant messaging technical support services, it said.

The site also offered links to sites for verifying the status of product rebates already requested, and for buying products the company is still allowed to distribute.

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Peter Sayer

IDG News Service
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