Digital Content Working Group Tip Sheet: DRM

July 10, 2012

One charge of the Digital Content and Libraries Working Group is to help the library community better understand and adapt to the growth of digital content. To assist with this, the internal communication subgroup (subgroup five for those who follow numbers better) will be publishing a series of DCWG Tip Sheets. Written in plain English, the tip sheets will explain issues such as DRM, digital accessibility, the economics of publishing, and other topics to be determined—by you.

One key aspect of internal communication is to make sure that it is a two-way conversation. We selected the topic for the first tip sheet based on what we think you the reader might be looking for, but now we have time to check for feedback. What topics do you want us to cover? What questions do you have about digital content that we can work to answer? Please leave a comment below, or email suggestions to econtentblog[at]

The first tip sheet, tackles digital rights management (PDF file). This is a highly technical, highly nuanced, and legally ticklish topic, which makes it an excellent (or really difficult) place to start, depending on your role as reader or author. Great credit goes to Kate Sheehan and Linda W. Braun for their initial writing, and the rest of the DCWG and OITP staff for excellent editing. The next step is reading and sharing.

Our vision for the tip sheets is that they can help inform conversations and provide additional information for interested parties. Keep them at the front desk to help answer patron questions, or use them as a starting point for a quick professional learning opportunity in a staff meeting. I have already had publishers ask for copies to help answer some of their questions about DRM as well, so feel free to share this well beyond the library community.

And don’t forget . . . come back to let us know what topics to start working on for the next tip sheets!