RE: Bitkeeper

From: Shawn (
Date: Fri Jul 18 2003 - 16:28:47 EST

Maybe you're right, but to the point of the conversation, 'taint worth
it to fight it.

The worst thing anyone can do is go off half cocked, make a challenge,
and *poof*, the protocol gateways disappear, because now Larry is
spending his time & $$ with the lawsuit, and takes down the protocol

So, in essence, I say pick the battles that are worth fighting, and then
only the battles that are worth winning.

On Fri, 2003-07-18 at 16:08, David Schwartz wrote:
> > Our license states that you can't use BK if you are developing a similar
> > system, i.e., a clone. Without using BK it's impossible to reverse
> > engineer BK to create the clone. So your message seems to be saying
> > "it would be appropriate at this point to violate the BitKeeper license
> > in order to write a free client which talks with BitKeeper".
> > Larry McVoy lm at
> My understanding of the relevant case law in the United States is that
> these types of restrictions are not allowed under copyright law itself.
> They've only been upheld when they're part of a sale contract. You can
> certainly argue that a click to an 'I Agree' link constitutes acceptance of
> a sale contract. But if someone sits down at a friend's computer that
> happens to have BK on it, or finds a copy of BK on a CD someone left at the
> lab, you would have a hard time arguing that they agreed to this contract.
> See, for example, ProCD v. Zeidenberg:
> "Copyright law forbids duplication, public performance, and so on, unless
> the person wishing to copy or perform the work gets permission; silence
> means a ban on copying. A copyright is a right against the world. Contracts,
> by contrast, generally affect only their parties; strangers may do as they
> please, so contracts do not create "exclusive rights." Someone who found a
> copy of SelectPhone(TM) on the street would not be affected by the
> shrinkwrap license - though the federal copyright laws of their own force
> would limit the finder's ability to copy or transmit the application
> program."
> IANAL, and in any event, I don't think any court would look fondly on
> someone who deliberately contrived a method to claim they're not subject to
> the license.
> DS

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