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Re: Moglen Ravicher LLC -- initial client and initial target

From: Alexander Terekhov
Subject: Re: Moglen Ravicher LLC -- initial client and initial target
Date: Thu, 27 Mar 2008 23:13:30 +0100

rjack wrote:
> It is ironic to note that the legal threats from "Ravicher Moglen LLC"

Given that "Ravicher Moglen LLC" (for-profit) is fully owned subsidiary
of Eben's SFLC (nonprofit)...
("Moglen Ravicher LLC is fully owned by the Software Freedom Law Center,
and all profits will go to support SFLC's operations")

... what if it turns out that "Ravicher Moglen LLC" can bring only 
losses and no sustainable profits... will Eben's SFLC subsidize 
"Ravicher Moglen LLC" losses or just let it go bankrupt? Hmmm. 

Interesting scheme. :-)
(Software Freedom Law Center spins off law firm for profit-making

The creation of the new firm was necessary because the SFLC's
self-appointed mandate is to assist only nonprofit clients. "We formed
Moglen Ravicher LLC in order to offer the same services we provide
through the Software Freedom Law Center to those members of the free and
open source community who are not eligible for SFLC's pro bono
services," Ravicher says.

Part of the reason for this mandate, Moglen explains, is that "it
enables us to explain in a clear and transparent way to our supervisory
authorities -- that is, the Charities Bureau of the New York State
Attorney General, which regulates us as a New York state nonprofit, and
the Internal Revenue Service, which governs our tax deductions -- how we
are conducting our operation."

However, even more importantly, the SFLC wished to ensure its donors,
many of whom are corporate, that they "would not have to worry that our
clients included competitors of theirs," Moglen says.

Although it was announced yesterday, Moglen Ravicher was in fact created
"some time ago" says Moglen, in anticipation that the strict division
between donors and clients might one day hamper the SFLC's main goal of
defending FOSS. With an increasing number of FOSS projects being either
created or monetized by businesses, SFLC's legal directors anticipated
that someday they might want to be in a position to assist for-profit


"We will have an arrangement with OpenNMS that is closer to a
traditional fee-for-service arrangement [than the SFLC's usual
practice]," Moglen says. "And the money that the case generates -- which
won't be much, I hear -- will be at the disposal of the SFLC to use for
all its cases and clients."

Another consideration, Moglen says, is that, "We don't think that
commercial counsel can economically serve this client. It's not a big
money-maker, and commercial counsel might find that it's not attractive
to represent them."

Uh. I thought that "for-profit" actually means... eh... commercial. No?

Moglen anticipates that many of the new firm's clients will be in
positions similar to OpenNMS'. "I believe that we will see that the
clients of Moglen Ravicher are not very many, and that they will not be
very big or very rich predominantly. 

Very interesting. 


"03/17/2008 10  NOTICE OF VOLUNTARY DISMISSAL: Pursuant to Rule 41(a)(1) 
of the F.R.C.P., plaintiffs Erik Andersen and Rob Landley hereby dismiss 
this action against defendant Verizon Communications Inc. WITH

                         -- CIVIL DOCKET FOR CASE #: 1:07-cv-11070-LTS

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