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posted by Fnord666 on Sunday February 16 2020, @02:22PM   Printer-friendly
from the no-way-out dept.

The head of security firm Open Source Security, Brad Spengler, says he had little option but to file a lawsuit against open source advocate Bruce Perens, who alleged back in 2017 that security patches issued for the Linux kernel by OSS violated the licence under which the kernel is distributed.

The case ended last week with Perens coming out on the right side of things; after some back and forth, a court doubled down on its earlier decision that OSS must pay Perens' legal costs as awarded in June 2018.

The remainder of the article is an interview with Brad Spengler about the case and the issue.

iTWire contacted Spengler soon after the case ended, as he had promised to speak at length about the issue once all legal issues were done and dusted. Queries submitted by iTWire along with Spengler's answers in full are given below:

Court Orders Payment of $259,900.50 to Bruce Perens' Attorneys

Original Submission

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  • (Score: 2) by Immerman on Monday February 17 2020, @11:31PM

    by Immerman (3985) on Monday February 17 2020, @11:31PM (#959348)

    >The GPL is completely toothless. No one ever sues anyone to enforce it.

    Actually they do, but not often, because they don't have to.

    In almost every case, when someone is informed that they are violating the GPL and need to get into compliance they very rapidly do so. For the simple reason that the moment they ask their lawyers about it, they're informed that they have absolutely no leg to stand on. Without the GPL, they have no license to redistribute the code, and are in clear violation of copyright law with all the extreme fines and prison terms that makes them vulnerable to. Full compliance with the license is the *only* thing protecting them from blatant copyright infringement charges. And from the moment their violation is pointed out to them, all further distribution becomes willful infringement, and susceptible to enhanced damages. Not hard to find a lawyer that will work on consignment when the case is that clear cut, and the penalties that high.

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