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MIT Bribed by Dolby

I was thoroughly disgusted at both MIT and Dolby Laboratories after reading [“MIT Getting Millions For Digital TV Deal,” Nov. 8]. The facts are:

(1) Dolby Laboratories offered bribes to other members of the “Grand Alliance” under the guise of “royalty sharing agreements” to ensure that Dolby’s AC-3 technology would be voted as the recommended HDTV digital audio standard.

(2) MIT sold its vote to Dolby Laboratories for $30 million.

Even if we accept the argument that Prof. Jae S. Lim cast his vote out of support for American companies and MIT’s financial interests, these motivations directly oppose the “international” and “non-profit” nature of the ATSC (the group behind the “Grand Alliance”). The group’s Web site states that “the Advanced Television Systems Committee is an international, non-profit organization developing voluntary standards for digital television.”

This contradiction suggests that Prof. Lim placed his local interests above his duty to represent the ATSC properly. I am very disappointed to be affiliated with a school that condones the offering and receiving of bribes as acceptable business practices.

Wei-An Yu ‘03