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Weekly News Digest

October 30, 2018 — In addition to this week's NewsBreaks article and the monthly NewsLink Spotlight, Information Today, Inc. (ITI) offers Weekly News Digests that feature recent product news and company announcements. Watch for additional coverage to appear in the next print issue of Information Today. For other up-to-the-minute news, check out ITIís Twitter account: @ITINewsBreaks.

CLICK HERE to view more Weekly News Digest items.

Breaking DRM Is Now Legal--In Certain Cases

Jason Koebler writes for Motherboard, “The Librarian of Congress and US Copyright Office just proposed new rules that will give consumers and independent repair experts wide latitude to legally hack embedded software on their devices in order to repair or maintain them. This exemption to copyright law will apply to smartphones, tractors, cars, smart home appliances, and many other devices.” The exemption had previously applied to tractor firmware, but it now applies to consumer electronics, including those that have DRM. People can now legally break DRM and other software locks “in certain specific cases. The new repair exemption is broad, applies to a wide variety of devices … and makes clear that the federal government believes you should be legally allowed to fix the things you own.”

Koebler cautions, “While this is a huge win on a federal level, this decision does nothing to address the practicalities of what consumers and independent repair professionals face in the real world. Anti-tampering and repair DRM implemented by manufacturers has gotten increasingly difficult to circumvent, and the decision doesn’t make DRM illegal, it just makes it legal for the owner of a device to bypass it for the purposes of repair.”

For more information, read the article.

Send correspondence concerning the Weekly News Digest to NewsBreaks Editor Brandi Scardilli

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