Court Says Reselling Software Is Okay

from the good-news dept

Last year, we wrote about a case filed by an eBay seller against Autodesk, claiming the company unfairly prevented him from reselling used copies of Autodesk software that he had legally purchased. Basically, every time the guy listed Autodesk software, the company would send a DMCA takedown to eBay who would take it down. Each time, the guy would send a counter claim, which Autodesk would ignore, allowing the software to go back on the site. However, with so many takedown notices, eBay banned his account for abuse -- even though he successfully responded to each claim as being false. For that, he sued Autodesk. Autodesk moved to have the court dismiss the case claiming that the seller had no right of first sale because the software was "licensed" rather than sold. If that sounds like weak semantics, you've got a point... and it appears the court agrees with you. In denying Autodesk's request to dismiss the case, the court indicates that, even though the case law covering this issue often varies, it believes that the software has been sold, not licensed, and therefore the right of first sale does exist on Autodesk's software. The case should now proceed if Autodesk doesn't quickly show up with an offer to settle the case quietly (which it might). Assuming the case does go forward, it's going to be worth watching closely, as it will have important ramifications for the right to resell software you purchased.

Filed Under: auctions, autocad, dmca, right of first sale
Companies: autodesk, ebay


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  1. identicon
    GingerB4, 24 Sep 2019 @ 9:14pm

    Re: Back to nature

    Back to nature I'm with you. I was thinking this same exact thing. Trying to clear out old software and thought I'd search where to sell it online. It's vintage Adobe. I paid a hefty price to OWN it. That was always the draw to Apple in the past. 1996
    Now I have a monthly subscription that outruns all my old, out of date systems, etc... I just wonder if someone out there can use it on an old nostalgic machine perhaps and bless me with a small return from the sale. I'll never get back out of it what I originally paid. It was steep! Just like everything they sell to creators and artists. It's practically useless to invest in the products I need to create with because the price is so high that I will probably never recover my initial and ongoing investment simply trying to keep up with the upgrades. It's like a car depreciation driving it off the lot. Pure robbery anymore. I'm going back to watercolors...a lot more enjoyable and not as expensive...eh...whatever.


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