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Bye - Bye , open source derivative works litigation

From: RJack
Subject: Bye - Bye , open source derivative works litigation
Date: Wed, 10 Feb 2010 14:09:05 -0500
User-agent: Thunderbird (Windows/20090812)

"Posted On: September 7, 2009 by David Johnson
Good Copyright Registration "Hygiene" Necessary to Obtain Copyright
Protection over Revised Versions of Software"

The case was SimplexGrinnell LP v. Integrated Systems & Power, Inc.,
U.S.D.C., Southern District of New York, Case No. 07Civ2700. The
plaintiff, Simplex, makes fire alarm and sprinkler equipment. The
defendant, ISPI, was an installer of Simplex's equipment in the New York
and New Jersey areas and was granted, as part of a bankruptcy court
order, a license to use Simplex's programming software to service
Simplex alarm systems for ISPI's existing customers. However, ISPI began
using Simplex's software to service new customers, as well. Simplex sued
for copyright infringement, seeking to block ISPI from using its
software to service new customers...

Copyright law classifies works as "original" and "derivative" works. A
"derivative" work is a work that is based on "one or more preexisting
works." 17 U.S.C. ยง 101. To be fully protected, derivative works must be
copyrighted separately from the original works on which they are based.
In an attempt to circumvent the Court's ruling, Simplex argued that the
changes it had made in the software between the serial editions of each
revision were trivial, so the different editions within each revision
did not qualify as "derivative" works and did not require separate
copyright registration. Under Simplex's theory, because each version of
the software was not a derivative work, it registration of one of the
versions within each "revision" should be sufficient to confer subject
matter jurisdiction over the entire revision.

However, the Court found that the evidence at trial simply did not
support the claim that the changes made in the serial editions of each
revision were trivial. Second Circuit case law establishes that only a
minimal degree of changes must be made for a work to be considered
derivative. See Merkos L'Inyonei Chinuch, Inc. v. Ostar Sifrea
Lubavitch, Inc., 312 F.3d 94, 97 (2nd Cir. 2002) (to be considered
original, a work must be independently created by the author and possess
"at least some minimal degree of creativity."). Here, the evidence
showed that there were numerous changes between different versions: For
example between versions 10.01.01 and 10.50, an additional audio
programming feature was added and 275 defects were repaired."

Anybody still think SFLC litigation over busybox-0.60.3 (27-Apr-2002
735K) still has legs? ROFL

"The Captain's scared them out of the water!"


RJack :)

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