Princeton professor Edward Felten and his research team sued the RIAA, SDMI, Verance, and the U.S. Government for a declaratory judgment that they had the legal right to publish their research on SDMI watermarks.

The researchers successfully broke the watermarking technologies SDMI invited them to attack in the HackSDMI challenge. Yet when they planned to publish their results at the Information Hiding Workshop Conference, SDMI threatened suit under the anticircumvention provision of the DMCA, forcing them to withdraw the paper. Instead of folding, the researchers filed a suit of their own. Supported by the EFF, the researchers challenged the DMCA's chilling effect on scientific research, and private parties' broad invocation of the law to silence discussion of flaws in their products.

The suit is now pending in the District of New Jersey. The case has already received declarations of support from numerous computer scientists.

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