[Date Prev][Date Next] [Thread Prev][Thread Next] [Date Index] [Thread Index]

Re: MPlayer DFSG compatibility status

On Tue, Oct 07, 2003 at 08:52:34PM -0500, Steve Langasek wrote:
> Last I'd heard, "knowing infringement" in the US required the complicity
> of a patent lawyer, since mere mortals are no longer deemed qualified to
> judge for themselves whether a given usage is infringing. :P

As I understand it (which may be incorrect), we're deemed capable of
understand a patent and knowingly infringing upon it, but not capable of
knowing if we're not infringing without a lawyer.  That's how we end up in
the situation that simply reading patents results in higher liability.

Convenient arrangement.

> In which case, we know only that someone has *claimed* (out of court)
> that ASF is covered by Microsoft patents.  I haven't seen any of the
> patents (and I'm not looking).  You?

In any case, it doesn't matter whether we "know" we're infringing or not;
liability is only decreased if you're unknowing, not eliminated.

I think the only interesting question is whether a phone call from a
non-legal Microsoft employee is enough for Debian to count the patent
as enforced.

Glenn Maynard

Reply to: