I had another friend get bitten by this *feature*, and felt it was worthy of a note on this site.
: “Note for Perl 5.8 Users (incl Red Hat 8)
Redhat 8 and 9 changed the default LANG to something with utf8 and this causes all kinds of problems with installing various modules and software. So the fix is to set the environment LANG=en_US before going to into CPAN.
Just do “export LANG=en_US” on the command line, and then install the module you need. You probably want to consider installing this into something like /etc/profile, or other global environment area so that it is selected the default for all users.