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Re: Open source licenses are /actually/ contracts?!?

From: Tim Tyler
Subject: Re: Open source licenses are /actually/ contracts?!?
Date: Tue, 28 Aug 2007 20:52:38 GMT
User-agent: Thunderbird 2.0a1 (Windows/20060724)

Alexander Terekhov wrote:
Tim Tyler wrote:

*If* the user agreed to a contract by simply copying,
the world would be full of court cases where
SlimeSoft had included in the small print of its
license agreement:

"And by the act of copying this software, you hereby
  agree to sell all your worldly goods and deposit the
  proceeds in swiss bank account #xxxxxxxx."

Users do not agree to *anything* by the act of
copying something.  The worst that can happen
is that they can subsequently be sued for copyright
violation - since the user can simply claim that they
never bothered to read the license. [...]

Suppose that value of "your worldly goods" is less than damages for copyright infringement. Why wouldn't you bring such license as a defense to claim of copyright infringement? I certainly would.

Right - but suppose that things are the other way around -
and that SlimeSoft has to sue for copyright violation, and
then live with whatever the court awards them for this
evidently-terrible crime.
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