This is a true story with an unknown moral.
I was flying to Chicago for ALA (that is, this happened just under two weeks ago)–nonstop on American from San Jose, in coach, the 6;22 a.m. flight.
As the flight progressed, I noticed that the person one row ahead of me and to the left was watching a movie on their notebook computer (big, bright screen: impossible not to notice).
And that the movie was Star Wars Episode III
Which won’t be available on DVD for a while yet.
What made it even more unclear is that there was a big white timing strip running over the picture about a third of the way down, obscuring part of the picture, with constantly changing information. That suggests that this was studio material.
So either it was “deep infringement”–but odd, since the overlay precludes offering it as anything but bootlegged material–or a legitimate screening copy being watched by someone connected with the studio.
The latter is certainly plausible: LucasFilms is, after all, a Bay Area operation.
My best guess is that it wasn’t bootlegged, but what do I know. (No, I didn’t watch enough of it to say anything about the movie; I wouldn’t have noticed it at all except that the notebook was at an angle that made it impossible to ignore. After musing about it for a minute or so, I went back to Asimov’s Science Fiction–I usually catch up with the three semi-major SF magazines when I’m traveling.)
No real moral; just an anecdote.