While Blu-ray recorders haven't made their way to the US quite yet, they're very popular in Japan. So popular, in fact, that the Japanese government plans to add a copyright fee to the price of Blu-ray recorders and discs. As with other digital recording devices, this fee is meant to compensate content owners and allow consumers to copy or record digital TV broadcasts.
The education and industry ministries agreed Monday to impose copyright charges on sales of next-generation Blu-ray DVD recorders and discs, but the debate over digital recording devices using hard disks remains unresolved.
A formal announcement on the Blu-ray products was expected Tuesday.
Manufacturers and copyright holders have engaged in a fierce debate on compensatory charges and the allowable frequency of copying digital TV broadcasts.
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