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  1. <?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
  2. <html newsdate="2013-06-26">
  3. <head>
  4. <title>FSFE compliance workshop discovers GPL violation by FANTEC, Welte wins in court</title>
  5. </head>
  6. <body>
  7. <h1>FSFE compliance workshop discovers GPL violation by FANTEC, Welte wins in court</h1>
  8. <p newsteaser="yes">The <a
  9. href="http://www.ifross.org/sites/default/files/130618%20Urteil%20Fantec.pdf">Regional
  10. Court of Hamburg [Landgericht Hamburg] found FANTEC GmbH guilty of
  11. violating the GNU General Public License</a> in their media player FANTEC
  12. 3DFHDL. In the case between Harald Welte versus FANTEC GmbH the court
  13. decided that FANTEC has to pay a penalty fee plus additional costs for the
  14. lawyers, and has to give out the exact information about their chain of
  15. distribution of the FANTEC 3DFHDL Media Player.</p>
  16. <p>FANTEC was using the netfilter/iptables software (firewalling software
  17. for GNU/Linux) in one of the FANTEC 3DFHDL firmwares offered online. They
  18. distributed the firmware without complete corresponding source code as
  19. required by the GNU General Public License, version 2 (GPLv2) that governs
  20. the netfilter/iptables software. Attempts to resolve this issue failed,
  21. after which Harald Welte, one of the copyright holders of iptables, decided
  22. to go to court. The court decided that FANTEC acted negligently: they would
  23. have had to ensure to distribute the software under the conditions of the
  24. GPLv2. The court made explicit that it is insufficient for FANTEC to rely
  25. on the assurance of license compliance of their suppliers. FANTEC itself is
  26. required to ascertain that no rights of third parties are violated.</p>
  27. <blockquote><p>"It is great to see that the court acknowledges the fact
  28. that vendors themselves are responsible for checking their products for
  29. GNU GPL compliance. Especially FANTEC, who already had earlier issues
  30. with GNU GPL compliance, should have known better. This was just
  31. laziness," says Harald Welte, founder of <a
  32. href="http://gpl-violations.org">gpl-violations.org</a> and plaintiff
  33. in the case.</p></blockquote>
  34. <p>The GNU GPL violation was found at a "Hacking for Compliance workshop"
  35. of the Free Software Foundation Europe in May 2012 in Berlin. Several
  36. volunteers helped checking different devices for GNU GPL compliance.
  37. Afterwards the results where forwarded to gpl-violations.org and their
  38. lawyers, who followed up on it.</p>
  39. <p>Although FANTEC denied at first, compliance engineers of FSFE and
  40. gpl-violations.org were able to prove that the software iptables version
  41. 1.3.7 was on the device, even though FANTEC did not include the sources for
  42. this program in the provided source code. Besides they showed that the
  43. software was compiled on another date than the offered source code, proving
  44. that the source code offered by FANTEC was outdated.</p>
  45. <blockquote><p>"Together with our volunteers we will continue to ensure that users
  46. receive the freedom to use, study, share, and improve the software on their
  47. products. These are the basic principles of the Free Software community,
  48. and every company distributing the software has to comply with the
  49. respective licenses. Companies obviously see the benefit in building upon
  50. Free Software, and they should stick to these basic and simple rules." says
  51. Matthias Kirschner, FSFE's German coordinator and one of the organisers of
  52. the compliance workshop.</p></blockquote>
  53. <p>FSFE provides some <a href="/activities/ftf/useful-tips-for-vendors.html">
  54. easy steps</a> to follow to make your product GNU GPL compliant.</p>
  55. <p>The court decision (DE) is available on the <a
  56. href="http://www.ifross.org/sites/default/files/130618%20Urteil%20Fantec.pdf">IFROSS
  57. site (PDF)</a>.</p>
  58. <p>Other news related to GNU GPL violation cases: </p>
  59. <ul>
  60. <li>2011-11-10: "<a
  61. href="https://fsfe.org/news/2011/news-20111110-01.en.html">Court
  62. rejects AVM´s claims opposing third party modifications of GPL
  63. software"</a>.</li>
  64. </ul>
  65. </body>
  66. <tags>
  67. <tag>front-page</tag>
  68. <tag>Compliance</tag>
  69. <tag>Legal</tag><tag content="GNU GPL">GnuGpl</tag><tag>Ruling</tag>
  70. <tag>Licensing</tag>
  71. </tags>
  72. <timestamp></timestamp>
  73. </html>
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