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Re: Are GPLed .gifs legal at all ???

On Wed, Jul 12, 2000 at 01:39:55PM -0700, Mark Rafn wrote:
> I don't think the GIFs themselves infringe on the patent, as they do not
> encode or decode any data.  The patent is for a process (as are all
> patents, if I understand correctly), not the resulting object.
> If the GIFs were created with unlicensed tools, then the author of the
> images might be in violation.  If they are viewed with unlicensed tools,
> then the viewer might be in violation.  The author/distributor of such
> tools might be in violation.  In all cases, it's the tool that is
> infringing the patent, not the data.

There is no patent on LZW decompression.  Only compression.

Joseph Carter <knghtbrd@debian.org>               GnuPG key 1024D/DCF9DAB3
Debian GNU/Linux (http://www.debian.org/)         20F6 2261 F185 7A3E 79FC
The QuakeForge Project (http://quakeforge.net/)   44F9 8FF7 D7A3 DCF9 DAB3

<Crow-> who gives a shit about US law
<jim> anyone living in the US.

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