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US Court Finds Open Source Licences Enforceable; Big Impact Seen On US Copyright Law

Publication Date: 
August 26, 2008
Source: 
Intellectual Property Watch
Author: 
Steve Seidenberger

Professor Lawrence Lessig and Center for Internet and Society Residential Fellow Chris Ridder are quoted in an Intellectual Property Watch article about a recent ruling on the enforceability of of open source licenses:

“[T]rust me, this is huge,” Lawrence Lessig, a copyright expert at Stanford Law School, wrote in his online blog

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"The reasoning they used in this case will be highly persuasive to future courts," said Chris Ridder, residential fellow at Stanford Law School's Center for Internet and Society. (Ridder represented Creative Commons Corporation in this case, which filed an amicus brief on behalf of Jacobsen.)

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By allowing enforcement under copyright law, the court gave a major boost to the open source movement, according to many US copyright experts. "It confirms the expectations that millions of [open source] licensors have ... that this is a valid and useful way to licence copyrighted works," Ridder said.