A skeptical federal judge earlier had ruled that Novell had retained Unix copyrights when it sold its Unix business to the Santa Cruz Operation, a company whose Unix assets SCO Group later acquired. But the appeals court overturned that decision, based in part on a close reading of the Unix asset purchase agreement, sending the matter to trial for a decision. The appeals court did uphold a ruling that … Read more
A federal appeals court has scheduled a hearing next month to decide whether to uphold a ruling that would force Microsoft to stop selling Word in its current form.
A district court judge last week issued an injunction that would halt sales of any version of Word that includes a custom XML function that was found by a jury to infringe on a patent from Canada's I4i. In May, that jury also dinged Microsoft with $200 million in damages, an amount that the judge hiked to more than $290 million at the same time he ordered the injunction, which … Read more
After the 2006 suicide of 13-year-old Megan Meier, the victim of an Internet hoax, Missouri is taking cyberbullying very seriously.
Elizabeth Thrasher now has the dubious honor of being the first person charged with the felony of cyberbullying under a new Missouri state law.
According to a story in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch on Tuesday, Thrasher is accused of posting a photo of a teenage girl, along with personal information about her, in the "Casual Encounters" section of Craigslist.
Prosecutors in the case said that the 40-year-old Thrasher posted the girl's picture, e-mail address, and cell phone … Read more
Microsoft on Tuesday asked an appeals court to halt an injunction that would force the company to stop selling Microsoft Word in its current form.
A judge last week issued an injunction that would force Microsoft to stop selling versions of Word with a custom XML function that a jury found infringes on a patent held by Canadian software maker I4i. The judge had ordered the injunction to go into effect 60 days after the ruling.
In its "emergency motion," made Tuesday, … Read more
On August 4, White House aide Macon Phillips announced the launch of email@example.com, which encouraged Americans to report "fishy" information related to the Obama health care proposal. Phillips' announcement was titled "Facts Are Stubborn Things."
Well, so is public opinion, as the White House acknowledged on Monday by quietly pulling the plug on the firstname.lastname@example.org e-mail address.
Messages sent there are now bounced back with this response:<email@example.com>: host mailhub-wh2.whitehouse.gov[188.8.131.52] said: 550 5.2.1 <firstname.lastname@example.org>... The email … Read more
Nearly two years ago, the Bush administration sided with the major record labels in their civil lawsuit against an alleged and briefly famous Kazaa user named Jammie Thomas. Now the Obama administration is doing so as well.
Federal prosecutors argue the relevant law is "carefully crafted" and consistent with "due process" and part of a necessary "regime to protect intellectual property. Under current … Read more
If you want to use the Internet to peek at documents filed in federal court cases, it's usually possible. It's just relatively expensive.
The U.S. Congress allows the federal courts to charge a fee--currently set at 8 cents a page--to search for and download documents. The database, called PACER, is strict about charging and even levies fees for searches that result in no matches.
Which is why a pair of Princeton University graduate students, with some help from Harvard University's Berkman Center, have developed a Firefox browser plug-in called RECAP (PACER spelled backward). It's … Read more
The Pirate Party UK, which is dedicated to technology and copyright-law reform, has become an official political party.
The party was registered by the Electoral Commission this week, the party's leader Andrew Robinson told ZDNet UK.
"We're still in the early stages of forming the party," Robinson said Thursday. "We're still very small."
The U.K. organization has around 250 active members, Robinson said.
Electoral Commission registration allows the party to raise funds and list Pirate Party UK candidates at the next general election, which must take place before June 2010. Similar parties … Read more
The just-signed Illinois law banning sex offenders from social-networking sites might seem like a good idea to protect children, but it will have virtually no impact on their safety and could wind up making things worse.
The law, which was signed Thursday by Illinois Governor Pat Quinn, would prevent registered sex offenders in Illinois from using a social-networking service defined as an "Internet Web site containing profile Web pages...that include the names or nicknames of such members, photographs...or any other personal or personally identifying information."
The definition also includes "the ability to leave messages or … Read more
If you believe its sponsors, a new Illinois law will keep sex offenders from recruiting children on the Internet.
"If the predator is supposed to be a registered sex offender, they should keep their Internet distance as well as their physical distance," said sponsor Bill Brady, a Republican state senator, according to the Chicago Tribune. "The object is to protect innocent individuals on the Internet from sex offenders."