Feeds

Skype violates open source licence

Linux fundamentalist strikes again

The essential guide to IT transformation

Skype has been convicted of violating the open source GPL (General Public License) by a regional court in Munich.

However, it is not its popular peer-to-peer VoIP software that was addressed in court, but a VoiP phone from SMS Networks that the firm sells on its website.

The phone uses the Linux kernel, but Skype failed to also supply the source code, a prerequisite of GPLv2. Skype did, however, issue a flyer that contained URLs to the GPL license and to the source code. The GPL only permits a URL for software that is delivered over the internet.

The plantiff was German open source purist and Netfilter developer Harald Welte, who also runs gpl-violations.org, an organisation he set up to track down and prosecute violators of the GPL. In 2004, Welte sued Dutch company Sitecom, alleging it used the software in a wireless network product without abiding by the terms of the GPL. Not a word about the new case on his weblog yet.

Exactly what punishment Skype can expect is not clear, but it's likely to be a small fine. ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
Apple promises to lift Curse of the Drained iPhone 5 Battery
Have you tried turning it off and...? Never mind, here's a replacement
China: You, Microsoft. Office-Windows 'compatibility'. You have 20 days to explain
Told to cough up more details as antitrust probe goes deeper
BBC: We're going to slip CODING into kids' TV
Pureed-carrot-in-ice cream C++ surprise
Linux turns 23 and Linus Torvalds celebrates as only he can
No, not with swearing, but by controlling the release cycle
Scratched PC-dispatch patch patched, hatched in batch rematch
Windows security update fixed after triggering blue screens (and screams) of death
This is how I set about making a fortune with my own startup
Would you leave your well-paid job to chase your dream?
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Advanced data protection for your virtualized environments
Find a natural fit for optimizing protection for the often resource-constrained data protection process found in virtual environments.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.