CD copy-protection vendor, SunnComm Technologies Inc., today threatened to sue Princeton graduate student J. Alex Halderman for publishing a paper that reveals that simply holding down the shift key can defeat its latest copy-protection technology.
"What more proof do you need that the DMCA is chilling legitimate research?" asked EFF senior staff attorney Fred von Lohmann. "In America today, scientists shouldn't have to fear legal action for publishing the truth. Based on the apparent weakness of its technology, perhaps SunnComm should be hiring more Princeton computer scientists, instead of threatening to sue them."
For a compendium of other incidents involving the use of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) to squelch legitimate research, see EFF's recently revised report, "Unintended Consequences: Five Years Under the DMCA".