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Re: SFLC's GPL court enforcement -- track record

From: Alexander Terekhov
Subject: Re: SFLC's GPL court enforcement -- track record
Date: Thu, 23 Oct 2008 21:42:30 +0200

Hyman Rosen wrote:
> The only important part of the track record is that after each case,
> the GPLed sources are available.

You seem to not grasp the situation, Hyman: the SFLC has sued (filing
utterly defective copyright complaints warranting automatic dismissal) a
bunch of companies distributing hardware boxes allegedly containing the
GPL'd software without referring to the GPL and/or source code while
distributing (note: consider 17 USC 109 -- see the first ever answer to
the GPL complaint in court by Bell Microproducts, Inc. (Marvin, Lynn) ) said boxes. (The boxes are all made
where the firmware is installed -- in China/Taiwan.) The said companies
also offer the firmware (allegedly containing the GPL'd software) from
their respective web sites. In the complaints, the SFLC was talking
about "reinstantiation" of the (copyright) rights that (allegedly) had
been "automatically" terminated by virtue of the GPL. According to the
SFLC's former press releases, some of those companies have joined the
SFLC in issuing a press release announcing a "settlement" with
commitments going beyond the GPL (e.g. "Monsoon Multimedia has agreed to
appoint an Open Source Compliance Officer within its organization to
monitor and ensure GPL compliance, to publish the source code for the
version of BusyBox it previously distributed on its Web site, and to
undertake substantial efforts to notify previous recipients of BusyBox
from Monsoon Multimedia of their rights to the software under the GPL.
The settlement also includes an undisclosed amount of financial
consideration paid by Monsoon Multimedia to the plaintiffs"
). Note that Verizon managed to dismiss the case *with prejudice*
against plaintiffs and without any press release telling anything about
Verizon's commitments. All GPL cases were voluntarily terminated by the
SFLC without any judicial saying (the default judgment against BELL
MICROPRODUCTS, INC. D.B.A. HAMMER STORAGE was put aside by the court).
The last four cases (out of seven) were voluntarily terminated by the
SFLC without any joint press release. The first case of such kind was
against Verizon. What say you now, Hyman?


(GNG is a derecursive recursive derecursion which pwns GNU since it can 
be infinitely looped as GNGNGNGNG...NGNGNG... and can be said backwards 
too, whereas GNU cannot.)

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