From my piece on GamesLaw.net:
Despite the truly epic amount of litigation fomenting around DRM and SecuROM in particular, Rockstar has decided to use the product on the PC release of Grand Theft Auto IV this week, stating that SecuROM is “the most effective form of disc based copy protection[.]”
It is important to note that while SecuROM makes a product that many people dislike, the use of a SecuROM product by a company does not necessarily mean the advent of the sort of draconian measures found in Spore. GTAIV’s flavor, for example, will require anyone who does not purchase the game via Steam to have the disc in the drive while playing, and will require a one-time authentication on install. There are unlimited installs of the game after the initial authentication, and those do NOT require re-authentication.
That being said, like Spore, uninstalling GTAIV will still leave some remnants of SecuROM behind. As per Rockstar:
In regards to SecuROM, deleting GTA IV will remove the active functions if it is the only application that requires SecuROM, but some traces will remain, such as a registry entry and file, which allows you to reinstall without re-entering your authentication code. We are working with SecuROM to post information on our support pages regarding how to remove these inactive traces of the program for users who wish to do so.
At least they’re working on it, but why does the program do that in the first place? And isn’t that potentially malicious lingering part of what is calling SecuROM to legal question in the first place?