It’s a big win for open source — or is it? I’m talking about the Jacobsen v.
Katzer dispute about open source code violation. Bruce Perens has written a definitive story over on Datamation about the specifics of the case (so I won’t repeat that here).
The long story short is a U.S. court has upheld the validity of an Open Source developer’s rights. The sad part of the story is that it took five years for the U.S. justice system to come to that conclusion (whoever said that Justice is swift?)
While in many ways this is a precedent setting case – as a court test of an open source license – it’s far from the first time that lawyers have argued about open source issues – or settled open source based disputes.
You need to look now further than the Software Freedom Law Center (SFLC) that has successfully settled multiple GPL open source violations.
True the SFLC has settled all their matters (to date) out-of-court. But they were settled and I doubt that any self-respecting defence attorney would have settled if they thought that could defeat the SFLC and the GPL license they defend in a court of law.