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Re: mpeg encoder patents, Was: Bug#501190: ITP: moonlight

Robert Millan <rmh@aybabtu.com> writes:

> On Wed, Oct 08, 2008 at 04:30:09PM -0700, Russ Allbery wrote:
> > [...].  I have absolutely no idea whether any
> > of the software that I package is affected by some patent.
> You're putting all patents in the same bag, and it's not like that.

Agreed; I attempted to forestall this blurring of the lines,
apparently unsuccessfully.

> For example, if you distribute a windowing system, you're most
> likely violating lots of "crap patents" and can't tell which ones,
> but if you distribute LAME, you can be sure as hell you are
> infringing patents from Fraunhofer.

A more significant distinction is, as I've pointed out several times
already, that the Fraunhofer patents on MPEG audio algorithms *are
known to be actively enforced* by the holder against parties who
infringe those patents.

That's the distinction that seems to be the convention of ftp-master
for considering patent-encumbered packages too risky to redistribute
to recipients of Debian.

 \     “Pinky, are you pondering what I'm pondering?” “Um, I think so, |
  `\    Brainie, but why would anyone want to Pierce Brosnan?” —_Pinky |
_o__)                                                   and The Brain_ |
Ben Finney

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