US cinema chain bans Google Glass over piracy fears


Powered by Guardian.co.ukThis article titled “US cinema chain bans Google Glass over piracy fears” was written by Ben Child, for theguardian.com on Wednesday 11th June 2014 08.40 UTC

A popular independent US cinema chain has banned users of Google Glass from its properties over fears of piracy, reports Deadline.

Drafthouse Cinemas, which has 20 sites across the United States, said users of the devices would not be allowed to use them while watching films. Google Glass is feared because the wearable glasses can be used to surreptitiously record video.

"We've been talking about this potential ban for over a year," said Drafthouse CEO Tim League. "Google Glass did some early demos here in Austin and I tried them out personally. At that time, I recognised the potential piracy problem that they present for cinemas. I decided to put off a decision until we started seeing them in the theatre, and that started happening this month."

League was referring to the Alamo Drafthouse in Austin, Texas, the company's first and most famous cinema.

The chain has made headlines in the past with its hardline attitude towards texting and chatting during screenings. In October 2013, League said that Madonna was banned from all its sites after the singer and film-maker was reported to have used her Blackberry during a screening of the Oscar-winning drama 12 Years a Slave at the New York film festival.

Attitudes towards Google Glass appear to be hardening in the US. In January, cinema chain AMC said the eyewear was "not appropriate" for use in cinemas, following an incident in which homeland security officers interrogated a Glass wearer during a screening of Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit in Columbus, Ohio.

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