I read many interesting posts about Free Software and legal affairs, and in the context of my participation in the FSFE I have recently been sharing links with delegates of the European Legal Network. I have decided to publish these on my blog on a weekly basis (this new year's edition is a fortnightly special) to make it easier for others who are interested in Free Software and law to keep abreast of the topical issues.

To make it easier to follow I created a special tag under which I will post these, so you can either bookmark it or just subscribe only to the tag's Atom feed. Update: I have since moved this blog to a different system and redesigned the tagging, so the link doesn't work anymore.

So, without further ado…

Here is a collection of interesting Free Software and law related links for the past two weeks (now edited to make it easier to read):

Copyright & Copyleft

In re UMG vs. Augusto US Court of Appeals upholds first sale doctrine on promo CDs:

Roumors arise that with the coming of Brazil's new cultural minister Ana Maria Buarque de Hollanda, the huge (and pro free culture) copyright reform drafted by the previous minister Gilberto Gil will fall:

Howard Knopf lists his Dozen Copyright Predictions for 2011 (in Canada):


A nice story illustrating how software patents are bad for business all the same:

Detailed map of Apple vs. Nokia patent war:

Paul Allen again to sue major IT companies over patent infringement. His patents allegedly cover, among other things, systems that automatically call up and display related content:

Nortel Networks’ huge patent portfolio is planned to be sold on auction in the next few weeks (including some for 3G, 4G, LTE, WiMAX, OFDMA and MIMO). Expected bidders are Apple, Nokia and Google:

Privacy & Data Protection

Apple's iOS and Pandora Radio under a class-action lawsuit regarding privacy:

At the end of year, OpenSource.com takes a look back at most important bit about Free Software and patents in the year MMX:

US Court of Appleals rules that Microsoft unwilfully infringed a Uniloc patent designed to stop software piracy:

To top everything off, IBM is said to have applied a patent for automating the management of IPRs and comes with a "defend" module to formulate a strategy in the case of patent infringement:


Red Hat becomes even stronger in Thailand – especially in the cloud business:

In near future the French government plans to pass a law, which would effectively tax all tablet computers in France that do not run Windows. The reasoning is that tablets (and gadgets) which do not fall under the definitions of a PC have to be media players and should therefore include a tax for private copying of media content. Major issue is that "PC" in this case was defined by the Windows OS – ignoring GNU/Linux, Android, Mac OS, iOS and all others:

Putin orders Russia to migrate to GNU/Linux (also according to the comments, ODF gets accepted by Russian national standards body):

Cuba sets plan for 2011 to migrate to Free Software in order to be strenghthen its technological independence and security:

China's Ministry of Industry and Information Technology [MIIT] has issued a circular declaring that VoIP services (including Skype) other than those offered by State-owned giants China Telecom and China Unicom are illegal: - DigiCha: China’s MIIT Declares Most VoIP Services, Including Skype, Illegal - Yahoo News: China cracks down on Internet phone services


Now that ACTA's final text has been finalised in a slightly less scary way, USTR is negotiating a new ACTA-esque agreement – Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement [TPPA]. Again behind closed doors, again over-protecting and exporting US copyright and patent laws:

hook out → back to books

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