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The Open Source Law Weekly Digest or OSWALD first launched late in 2002. Since then it has been regularly providing updates on all things open source related. The focus of this newsletter is on business, rather than technical developments in open source. Another strong component of the newsletter is IP news, as it is of interest to me and has an effect on open source.

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OSWALD #364 Period ending 28 June 2010

OSWALD #364 Period ending 28 June 2010

Welcome to the Open Source Law Weekly Open Source Digest (OSWALD)

If you are inclined to Schadenfreude, there is a story about The Times UK losing traffic after putting up a free registration page. There is must read copyright foolishness in a cease and desist to thinkgeek.

In copyright and related news, Google has bested Viacom for the moment, and the Amercian Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers is going ballistic because American authors, composers and publishers are choosing open licensing schemes. Talk about unrepresentative.

>From my blog:

Verbatim distribution with attribution ok.

Other distribution - email me.



Brendan Scott

Open Source Law

***** Other

Officially our best-ever cease and desist

Recently we got the best-ever cease and desist letter. We're no stranger to the genre, so what could possibly make this one stand out from the rest?

Arena Now Set For the Android vs iPhone Robot Showdown

It's actually called a cellphone robot (or cellbot) match.

US Fears Loss of ICQ Honeypot

The US is sure that most criminals use ICQ and, therefore, constant access to the ICQ servers is needed to track them down. As the system is based in Israel, American security service have had access.

***** Off Topic

Google vanishes Android apps from citizen phones

Like Apple, Google has a "kill switch" that allows it to remotely remove mobile apps that have already been installed by end users. The tool is mentioned in the terms and conditions for Google's app store, the Android Market, as the press noticed when the store debuted.

UK paper requires free Web accounts; traffic plunges

But, according to Hitwise's numbers, simply adding the registration barrier has cut traffic to the site almost in half. Prior to the change, The Times was seeing somewhere in the neighborhood of four to five percent of the traffic going to the print news media category; after, it was hovering around two percent. Hitwise also tracked where users were going once they hit the registration page. About a third stay on one of The Times' properties, but many head straight to another news site (The Telegraph and The Guardian are big winners here), or simply to Google.

***** Patent/CR/DRM News+Policy

Google Beats Viacom!

"General knowledge that infringement is 'ubiquitous' does not impose a duty on the service provider to monitor or search its service for infringements," the judge wrote. So "the burden is on the owner to identify the infringement. "

International Experts Find that Pending ACTA Threatens Public Interest

This statement reflects the conclusions reached at a meeting of over 90 academics, practitioners and public interest organizations from six continents gathered at American University Washington College of Law, June 16-18, 2010.

ASCAP Declares War on Free Culture

"At this moment," the letter says, "we are facing our biggest challenge ever. Many forces including Creative Commons, Public Knowledge, Electronic Frontier Foundation and technology companies with deep pockets are mobilizing to promote "Copyleft" in order to undermine our "Copyright. " They say they are advocates of consumer rights, but the truth in these groups simply do not want to pay for the use of our music. Their mission is to spread the word that our music should be free. "

Software patents may be allowed in New Zealand after all

Local commentators on Twitter have reacted negatively to the development, seeing a back-door approach by NZICT and the international software companies that are its prominent members, when NZICT had not itself made a submission to the committee. The meeting with MED, according to the blog, included representatives of Microsoft and IBM, as well as local company Pingar and a written representation from another local developer, Aptimize.

10th Circuit Decides Major Copyright Case

Congress acted within its authority when it restored U. S. copyright protection to foreign parties whose works had entered the public domain, the 10th U. S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Monday in Golan v. Holder.

Jammie Thomas lawyer not hopeful on mediation

In an effort to finally settle the copyright claims made by the largest record companies against Jammie Thomas-Rasset, a federal court in Minnesota has appointed a special master to help mediate.

ASCAP Files 21 Copyright Suits Against Bars and Clubs

Any venue that hosts musicians who perform any of the 8. 5 million copyrighted songs overseen by the performing rights group, which collects royalties for song writers, is supposed to pay an annual licensing fee.

Researchers Say P2P Results in New Creations that Benefit Society

Oberholzer-Gee and Strumpf used SoundScan figures to explain the increase in new music works. "In 2000, 35,516 albums were released. Seven years later, 79,695 albums (including 25,159 digital albums) were published (Nielsen SoundScan, 2008). "

Releasing the Joint Strategic Plan to Combat Intellectual Property Theft

This office was established to coordinate the efforts of the different parts of the government that work hard to stop intellectual property theft. Equally important, your government also wants to make sure that the products you buy are safe.

***** Implementations

The Planet uses KVM and Ubuntu for Cloud hosting

But The Planet is a newcomer to the cloud computing space, which consists of virtualized server instances and on-demand storage rather than dedicated hardware. The Planet's cloud service is in public beta and is running more than 500 virtual servers on Intel Nehalem-based dual-core machines shipped by Dell.

***** Applications/Gadgets

Toshiba Android netbook

Toshiba introduced their Dynabook AZ Series which is equipeed with an Android 2. 1 OS... The AC100 is a mobile internet device with a 10. 1 inch LED screen and "up to 8 hours" of battery life. According to Toshiba, it "combines smartphone functionality with netbook usability".

Skype Releases Open SDK for Linux

Today, Skype is releasing an open software development kit (SDK) for developers called SkypeKit which will allow Skype calls, instant messaging, video chat and other features to be integrated into consumer electronics and computers

HP spins a netbook just for schools

Customization also extends to the Mini 100e's operating system: In addition to Windows 7 Starter Edition, the device will be offered with SuSE Linux Enterprise 11 and Windows XP Home Edition, HP says.

Mobile Linux Alert: Motorola Debuts Video-Centric Droid X

"Motorola designed Droid X to push the extreme limits of Android innovation, and enable you to do even more with your mobile device," Sanjay Jha, Motorola's co-chief executive officer of Motorola and CEO of Motorola's mobile devices and home business unit, said in a statement.

Critics' Choice: HTC Evo 4G Smartphone Review Roundup

Linux: We Now Build Mini ITX Systems with Linux Installed

I am proud to announce that here at ERA Computers & Consulting (ERACC) we have researched the parts needed to build Mini ITX, Tiny PC, systems and are offering a quote option on our sales site.

***** Reports

Microsoft Cites Success of Novell Linux Interop Deal

Jay Lyman, open source analyst at The 451 Group, said that the interoperability promise is the most important aspect to the Microsoft-Novell deal. Customers he's spoken with have never mentioned IP protection as a compelling reason for buying into the program.

Linux Foundation Announces StoreT-shirt Design Winner

"This design represents that the Linux system is the collective work of people and it was done so that others can enjoy a reliable, suitable operating system away from a monopoly. So, it's like a celebration of our efforts: Linux is our product. "

Small Business: How Red Hat Will Attack Microsoft Stronghold

Whitehurst sees cloud computing -- everything from Google Apps to Amazon Web Services -- as Red Hat's doorway into small business.

Red Hat Focuses on Partnerships With Q1 Earnings Ahead

The past year has been a good one for Linux vendor Red Hat, and as it looks forward to its fiscal 2011, the outlook remains strong. That's due at least in part to new customer wins and partnership initiatives the enterprise Linux player unveiled this week.

openSUSE Linux seeks own direction, more autonomy from Novell

One of the bullet points calls for the formation of an openSUSE Foundation. Other ideas include providing mentoring for new contributors and holding regular conferences and events.

Red Hat cracks Bloomberg Businessweek ‘Top 50’ list

The list is based "on our ranking of the 50 top-performing stocks in the Standard & Poor's 500-stock index over the past five years," the magazine said.

Marten Mickos says open source doesn't have to be fully open

The term "open core" essentially means that the heart of a software project is built on, and remains, open source but added features may not be (particularly a commercial version intended for enterprise use). VC-funded software startups love this model.

Linaro seeks to simplify ARM Linux landscape

Linaro was announced on June 3 as a non-profit company founded by ARM, Freescale, IBM, Samsung, ST-Ericsson, and Texas Instruments that intends to "provide a stable and optimized base for distributions and developers by creating new releases of optimized tools, kernel and middleware software validated for a wide range of SoCs, every six months. "

Red Hat Linux and its close relationship with Microsoft?!

"That relationship with Microsoft, believe it or not, is pretty strong. It was pushed by our customer base," Paul Cormier executive vice president and president, products and technologies at Red Hat said during the meeting. "Our customer base came to us and say 'look we have two operating systems running the datacenter, RHEL and Windows and you guys need to work together' so we got together. "

Mozilla, Opera, and Flock Release VP8 Ready Browsers

Open formats are taking center stage at Mozilla, Opera, and Flock as lock-in (or freeze-out), security concerns, and performance issues fuel the drive toward the VP8 video format.

Linux, the Numbers

When we say "yes, it was worth porting Osmos to Linux", we're basing it on the lower bound. If the reality is closer to the upper bound: that's "gravy". The tail: more gravy. (Though it does cost us time and money to support and maintain the site).

New Associate Member Program Strengthens Linux Community and Deepens OIN Impact

OIN Associate Members, such as Canonical, demonstrate support and commitment to limiting the effects of patent disputes in Linux. Canonical's activities and those of all companies seeking to adopt and use Linux will be facilitated as OIN works closely with Canonical and other companies that are supporting Linux's growth and expansion.

The Froyo Code Drop

Today is one of those days that has my heart racing; we've just released the source code for Android 2. 2. This is a big step forward for the entire Android ecosystem. Please don't melt the servers down again while trying to download that latest source code.

GPL: The Google Public License

People fall in love with their phones. Eventually they'll want to have the same OS on their desktop or laptop, especially if it offers some of the same cool apps and has been optimized for the desktop - something that Google is sure to recognize and accommodate.

Mozilla Wins The American Business Awards “Most Innovative Company of the Year”

We are excited to announce that Mozilla won the American Business Awards Stevie Award for Most Innovative Company of the Year (with less than 2,500 employees) in the software category!

***** Snippets

Has Windows 7 killed Linux on the desktop?

Steve Jobs's Touch Is What Ubuntu's Missing: Rich Jaroslovsky

Hanging Our Hats at One of the Best Companies to Work

Rethinking Windows security: Will Google's move spur others to drop Microsoft?

Mandriva Saved By New Investors

WYSIWYG music app makes a score

The Unbuntu SEO Experiment

Back When Linux Was Fun

Is LGP Going The Way Of Loki Software?

The Immortality of Open Source Projects

Why isn't Ubuntu good enough for US classrooms?

2nd Circuit Seeks Guidance on Use of Long-Arm Law for Copyrights

And now, for something totally different: EveryDesk!

Mark Shuttleworth at LinuxTag

Mozilla: Our browser will not run native code

Ubuntu Nearing X Server Not Running As Root

The Economics of Open Source: Why the Billion Dollar Barrier is Irrelevant
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