Gibbs-Duhem writes with news that MIT has dropped its subscription to the Society of Automotive Engineers' web-based database of technical papers over the issue of DRM. The SAE refuses to allow any online access except through an Adobe DRM plugin that limits use and does not run on Linux or Unix. Also, the SAE refuses to let its papers even be indexed on any site but their own. SAE's use of DRM is peculiar to say the least, as they get their content for free from the researchers who actually do the work. And those researchers have choices as to where they send their work, and some of the MIT faculty are pretty vocal about it. From the MIT Library News: "'It's a step backwards,' says Professor Wai Cheng, SAE fellow and Professor of Mechanical Engineering at MIT, who feels strongly enough about the implications of DRM that he has asked to be added to the agenda of the upcoming SAE Publication Board meeting in April, when he will address this topic."
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