Answered By Library Staff
Last Updated: Jul 27, 2022     Views: 3

DRM, or digital rights management, is a form of protection on electronic copyrighted works. For example, a Kindle ebook is typically a mobi file that needs specific  software to make the file readable and it sets limits on how the content can be used and possibly what devices, software, and more can access the content. 

Removing DRM can make something more open, but it does not remove the copyright on material. Even public domain material could be said to have DRM attached to the content, depending on where it is coming from (think of a Jane Austen novel that is a Kindle ebook). 

DRM comes up in conversation when talking about 'circumvention.' The DMCA limits what you can and cannot circumvent on materials, possibly even if your use of the material would be a fair use

Material without DRM could be said to be open access material, meaning it is accessible and open if there is no paywall. But, because it is still copyrighted, it does not mean it is Creative Commons or OER material. 

See the link below to learn more.