Amazon's distribution of 1984 based on false statement of ownership
Posted Jul 24, 2009 16:07 UTC (Fri) by giraffedata
In reply to: The grumpy editor's e-book reader
Parent article: The grumpy editor's e-book reader
put this in software terms.
Well, I'd rather not because copyright is not my area of expertise :-), but most of what you're asking is fairly general law, so I can still respond.
obviously he will stop distributing the software, but now there are lots
of copies of your software around without your permission. how can you
be 'made whole'?
We figure out (with the help of a court if necessary) how much money I lost by not being able to sell copies to those people and you and/or Joe pay me that amount. It's a very difficult calculation, but people do it all the time. In the US, there are also statutory damages that help with the calculation: legislation sets an arbitrary value on a copyright infringement that can be used when there's nothing better available.
remember, until you told Joe that the software was yours, he had done
I beg to differ. As the most efficient means of preventing thefts, law often charges all people with the responsibility to make sure what they're buying isn't stolen, and Joe didn't do everything he could toward that responsibility. That was wrong. For example, Joe could have insisted that we broker the software through another company that is more trustworthy than me and more capable than Joe of detecting copyright infringements. My employer buys virtually all of its software through such a company for exactly this reason. It also won't take bug fixes from customers and is very reluctant to redistribute any open source software.
but what if you really don't want your software to be out in the wild?
The law can't help me with that. At least not English Common Law, which is the basis for US civil law, among others. The law, with few exceptions, deals only in money value of things.
in cases of theft one of the first priorities is to try and get
everything back as it was before the theft, and then look into
penalties. if things cannot be put back, then compensation for the loss
In my experience (again, English Common Law), "back as it was" is a statement about money. A court will rarely order a thief to return the stolen item, but rather will order payment of the market value of the item. Typically, the thief offers to return the item instead and the victim settles for that. There usually aren't penalties (except as part of an entirely separate criminal matter).
to post comments)