Feeds

GPL scores historic court compliance victory

I want my HDTV settlement

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

Open sourcers have scored a major victory in a US court over violation of the GPL.

The Software Freedom Conservancy has secured $90,000 in damages for willful infringement of GPLv2, plus nearly $50,000 in costs from Westinghouse Digital Electronics over its illegal distribution of the Unix utility BusyBox. The company has also been ordered to stop shipping product loaded with BusyBox.

It's the first time a US court has awarded an injunction ordering a GPL violator to permanently stop distribution of out-of-compliance GPL'd software.

It might not be the last. The action is one of 14 that SFC has filed against the same number of consumer electronics manufactures and retailers for GPL violations, including Best Buy, Samsung Electronics America, and JVC Americas.

Westinghouse was pulled up for copying, modifying, and distributing BusyBox in firmware for its HDTV products and in software intended for use in HDTV without complying with the GPL license.

As part of the settlement, SFC has also secured the right to compel Westinghouse to hand over all unsold products loaded with BusyBox for donation to charity.

The company's costs could have been lower, but the New-York district court hearing the case took a dim view of the fact that Westinghouse's legal team failed to appear for the discovery phase.

Westinghouse is currently in General Assignment, an alternative to bankruptcy under California state law, and declined to defend itself. That means SFC and BusyBox's creator must now apply to Westinghouse's administrators as creditors in order to receive payment — and probably to get their HDTV kit. ®

Security for virtualized datacentres

More from The Register

next story
New 'Cosmos' browser surfs the net by TXT alone
No data plan? No WiFi? No worries ... except sluggish download speed
iOS 8 release: WebGL now runs everywhere. Hurrah for 3D graphics!
HTML 5's pretty neat ... when your browser supports it
Mathematica hits the Web
Wolfram embraces the cloud, promies private cloud cut of its number-cruncher
Mozilla shutters Labs, tells nobody it's been dead for five months
Staffer's blog reveals all as projects languish on GitHub
'People have forgotten just how late the first iPhone arrived ...'
Plus: 'Google's IDEALISM is an injudicious justification for inappropriate biz practices'
SUSE Linux owner Attachmate gobbled by Micro Focus for $2.3bn
Merger will lead to mainframe and COBOL powerhouse
iOS 8 Healthkit gets a bug SO Apple KILLS it. That's real healthcare!
Not fit for purpose on day of launch, says Cupertino
Netscape plugins about to stop working in Chrome for Mac
Google kills off 32-bit Chrome, only on Mac
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
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?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.