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Re: Original code

From: rjack
Subject: Re: Original code
Date: Sat, 19 Jan 2008 11:49:45 -0500
User-agent: Thunderbird (Windows/20071031)

rjack wrote:
In the ongoing BusyBox GPL lawsuit with Verizon, the
plaintiffs Rob Landley and Erik Andersen
must identify the specific source code in which *they*
claim ownership as the original authors.

Verizon has been accused of distributing the binary object code
translated from the original BusyBox source code.

Once the alleged source code has been identified as the sole work of the respective plaintiffs Landley and Anderson (and not the work of other project contributors), the plaintiffs must demonstrate the specific object code (e.g. translation of the source code) that Verizon is violating.

Once all the non-ownership derivative patch code has been removed, what are the chances that any compiler on the planet will successfully compile the remaining fragments so that the allegedly infringed code may used for a test of "substantial similarity" to the sequence of thousands of ones and zeroes that Verizon distributes in the firmware code? How do you demonstrate "substantial similarity" in sequences of tens of thousands of binary symbols? "Substantial similarity" is a question to be decided by the trier-of-fact. It could be real interesting watching a judge or jury do this kind of comparison.

A huge corporation like Verizon will hire a law firm charging $250 - $400 per hour. The discovery phase, along with expert witness fees will entail costs of tens of thousands of dollars or more. The prevailing party in a copyright infringement action is awarded legal expenses. See 17 U.S.C. sec. 505.

I wonder if Landley and Anderson will use the SFLC for their bankruptcy filing.

Rjack :)

--- "Although the United States Copyright Act, 17 U.S.C. sec. 101- 1332, grants exclusive jurisdiction for infringement claims to the federal courts, those courts construe copyrights as contracts and turn to the relevant state law to interpret them."; Automation by Design, Inc. v. Raybestos Products Co., 463 F.3d 749, (United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit 2006) ---

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