Re: Bug#153467: libjpeg62: JPEG is patent-encumbered]
On Sun, Jul 21, 2002 at 02:37:46PM -0700, David Starner wrote:
> So there's allegedly a patent on JPEG. I think someone came up with a
> patent on run-length encoding at one point. Legally, moving it to
> non-free is a lousy cop-out, which I don't think changes our liability
> one bit. IMO, for the time being, we should just ignore it, until it's
> clear it's going to be accepted generally as a valid patent. If that
> happens, then we should consider moving it to non-US, not non-free.
I'd agree. We should certainly not move libjpeg62 on a whim; it would
have a very nasty knock-on effect on the rest of the distribution. Look
at 'apt-cache showpkg libjpeg62'; I wouldn't go quite so far as to say
that we might as well just close up shop at that point, but it would be
an extraordinary amount of work to excise it, and infuriating to find
out that we didn't have to after all.
> But right now, all we have is a corporation claiming its patent
> covers JPEG, and we all know how they would never lie about that . . .
I've had the impression that the remaining life of the patent is really
quite short, too, and that they're going after people with money while
Colin Watson [firstname.lastname@example.org]
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