Judge Agrees: Just Because You Dislike Open Source, Doesn't Make It Illegal
from the in-case-you-were-wondering dept
About a year ago, we noted a bizarre lawsuit by someone claiming that the concept of the GPL (General Public License) was a violation of anti-trust law as it was illegal price fixing that made it impossible to compete. It seemed laughable at the time, and it appears that a judge has agreed, throwing out the case and making the guy pay the legal fees of the Free Software Foundation for its troubles (found via Digg). The judge dismissed the case because the plaintiff completely failed to show specific anti-trust related injury as resulting from the GPL — which suggests others could still go after the GPL under the same argument if they could present a better case. However, it still seems fairly ridiculous, since the GPL is simply a license choice. In fact, the judge even noted: “the GPL encourages, rather than discourages, free competition and the distribution of computer operating systems, the benefits of which directly pass to consumers. These benefits include lower prices, better access and more innovation.” Just because something is given away free, it doesn’t automatically make it anti-competitive. In many cases, it’s actually much more competitive. It just means that the business model may be different or non-existent.