Re: GPL & Possible Derivative Work
* Michael K. Edwards <firstname.lastname@example.org> [050618 01:30]:
> On 6/17/05, Bruce Perens <email@example.com> wrote:
> > Clean-room is an excellent strategy for avoiding copyright infringement.
> > It enables someone to write a functionally compatible program without
> > having seen the original. In an infringement case, it makes it entirely
> > plausable to the court that the writer never saw the original
> > implementation and was working only from the functional description.
> > I'm not clear why you didn't consider that.
> Plausible isn't much help here. Courts mostly only ask "is it
> plausible that the resemblances are coincidental" when evaluating
> claims of copying of non-literal elements from a rejected screenplay,
> film scenario, creature sketch, etc. into a fictional work (such as a
> movie) made later. That sort of "constructive availability" test can
> weaken a claim of infringement at the factual copying stage, but
> usually only if it's demonstrably improbable that the later author
> even knew what was in the work alleged to have been copied.
I do not know about you, but I prefer adhereing to the law than to
break it in a way you have the best chance of getting away.
As was stated before, proper clean room implementation makes it impossible
to have undeliverately copied something protected. With all the
specifications made you also get a good documentation of what actually
happened. Noone can force you to make it more 'different' to the orginal
(and even less to make less verbatim copies, because there are no
verbatim copies, only things ended up to be verbatimly the same).
The only possibility to attack this scheme it to persuade to court
you did not do so and lied and produced specifications and
documentations and the like to disguise the facts. It is not even
your word against someone else's word, but your word against someone
else's wild guessings.
Bernhard R. Link