It’s very unfortunate that more people aren’t aware of what the DMCA is but it affects a large majority of the people I know.. (yes you too!)
The fact that these exemptions were granted is a huge step for Copyright justice… though more liberty could have certainly been granted.
A brief explanation: the DMCA (Digital Mellinium Copyright Act) basically infringes on your rights to do what you want with content (music, video) that you own. Under basic Copyright law you are allowed to make copies of your copyrighted material (music, video etc) as long as it is for personal use, however, in the case of DVDs and even newer CDs companies are placing copy-protection software making it impossible for you to copy your DVDs or CDs even for your own, personal usage. The DMCA prohibits by law the circumvention of copy-protected material in any case.. even if you are only making a personal copy for yourself. Basically you are given less rights to do what you want with property that you own.
Educate yourself. This stuff is important.