Feeds

CBS hit for $1.2m over Chinese censorware

Net sitter firm files chicken feed damages demand

Boost IT visibility and business value

Solid Oak Software has hit media giant CBS with a demand for $1.2m, after the media giant's tech subsidiary posted downloads of the Chinese government's Green Dam Youth Escort software.

Green Dam was the centrepiece of Beijing's abortive effort to force PC manufacturers to preload filtering software that would protect young Chinese from porn - and vile Western ideas such as democracy.

However, it quickly emerged that chunks of the package had been lifted from Solid Oak's Cybersitter package, including blacklists and documentation.

This week's complaint repeats these claims, saying that Green Dam lifted approximately 3000 lines of code from Cybersitter.

It goes on to allege "that CBS is responsible for distributing numerous copies of the infringing Green Dam software throughout the United States, China and elsewhere by making the infringing software available for download on its website ZDNet China."

In its complaint, it says CBS carried the software to "promote its website, generate web traffic and advertising revenues, and gain increased access to the vast Chinese-speaking market." The suit claims stats on ZDNet China showed Green Dam had been downloaded more than 31,000 times.

Solid Oak said it was seeking over $1.2m in damages - $39.99 per copy - as well as "injunctive relief to prevent CBS from further distribution of the infringing software."

Back in June when Green Dam first started to crack, Santa Barbara-based Solid Oak said it would seek an injunction against the Chinese developers, but it was inevitable that it would get more redress by going after PC vendors and distributors who had made the Chinese software available.

But in the world of tech lawsuits, $1.2m is chicken feed. The firm doesn't even seem to be claiming for distress, hurt feelings, etc., suggesting it genuinely reckons it has been damaged to the tune of $1.2m.

However, more legal action seems to be in the offing, with Solid Oak adding ominously that "this is the first lawsuit that Solid Oak has filed with respect to the infringement of its copyrights in CYBERsitter by the Green Dam program."

China eventually put the Green Dam effort on ice and then scaled it back - but that didn't stop PC vendors, including US manufacturers, from shipping the software anyway. ®

Gartner critical capabilities for enterprise endpoint backup

More from The Register

next story
Microsoft: We plan to CLEAN UP this here Windows Store town
Paid-for apps that provide free downloads? Really
Snowden on NSA's MonsterMind TERROR: It may trigger cyberwar
Plus: Syria's internet going down? That was a US cock-up
Who needs hackers? 'Password1' opens a third of all biz doors
GPU-powered pen test yields more bad news about defences and passwords
e-Borders fiasco: Brits stung for £224m after US IT giant sues UK govt
Defeat to Raytheon branded 'catastrophic result'
Hear ye, young cyber warriors of the realm: GCHQ wants you
Get involved, get a job and then never discuss work ever again
Chinese hackers spied on investigators of Flight MH370 - report
Classified data on flight's disappearance pinched
Microsoft cries UNINSTALL in the wake of Blue Screens of Death™
Cache crash causes contained choloric calamity
prev story

Whitepapers

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.
7 Elements of Radically Simple OS Migration
Avoid the typical headaches of OS migration during your next project by learning about 7 elements of radically simple OS migration.
BYOD's dark side: Data protection
An endpoint data protection solution that adds value to the user and the organization so it can protect itself from data loss as well as leverage corporate data.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?