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Re: Attorney fees

From: Alexander Terekhov
Subject: Re: Attorney fees
Date: Tue, 15 Jul 2008 15:40:23 +0200

Hyman Rosen wrote:
> Germany - the GPL is legal and enforceable there.

Not true.

Appellate Judge Hoeren (Court of Appeal of Dusseldorf, Copyright


"Finally, there is the important question of the consequences of the
assumed invalidity of the GPL. The Munich court argued that the question
of the enforceability of the GPL was in no way relevant. According to
the Bavarian judges, if the GPL is legally ineffective, the user does
not have a license and is thus violating copyright law. On the face of
it, that sounds plausible, but it is not. If somebody offers software on
the Internet for downloading and links the download with invalid general
terms, he can hardly sue for copyright infringement. Instead, the
validity of the standard terms is a matter for the software distributor:
if he wants to use invalid contractual terms, he bears the risk of their
use. It would violate equity and good faith if he were allowed to sue
others merely on the grounds that his license terms were invalid."

About more recent Welte/jbb's "GPL under German law" stunt (against

Jörg Wimmers and Detlef Klett, Computer und Recht 2008, p. 59.


"Die vielfach beschworene Wirksamkeit der GPL nach deutschem Recht wird
auch durch dieses neuerliche instanzgerichtliche Urteil nicht belegt.
Zahlreiche Punkte bleiben unklar; viele für die Praxis sehr wichtige
Punkte sind durch sämtliche bisherigen Entscheidungen nicht einmal im
Ansatz berührt worden."


(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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