Court Victory for Open Source Developer

Friday Feb 19th 2010 by Developer.com Staff
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Open source developer wins intellectual property court case.

In the court case of Jacobsen v. Katzer, open source developer Robert Jacobsen won. In a settlement, Katzer agreed to give Jacobsen $100,000.

What happened is that Matthew Katzer took Jacobsens' Java Model Railroad Interface open source code, deleted the copyright and author notices and incorporated into his proprietary software.

The court found that Jacobsens' project was sufficiently original and therefore entitled to copyright protection. And according to The H Open, even though Jacobsen and other JRMI developers made their code available for free, the project still generated money for them - thus monetary compensation was in order.

The court also ruled that Katzer violated the Digital Millennium Copyright Act when he removed the author and copyright information, The H Open reported.

In addition to the cash settlement, Katzer is prohibited from using JRMI code or registering domain names or trademarks using the name of JMRI projects.

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