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From: David Abrahams (dave_at_[hidden])
Date: 2002-11-30 10:54:21

"David B. Held" <dheld_at_[hidden]> writes:

> On the other hand, I imagine that Boost authors generally don't have
> the same resources that large companies do. So is it really in
> anyone's best interests to attack a Boost author over a dubious
> patent claim? Isn't that like trying to squeeze blood from a
> turnip? In a way, Boost authors may be protected by the fact that
> they are single individuals, rather than entire corporations.

I would be very wary of that logic. Companies have all kinds of
reasons for suing. In some areas like trademark infringement, it the
rights-holder's responsibility to enforce the trademark. If you don't
pursue the infringer, your rights to the trademark disappear.

> And I imagine that if someone were to unfairly attack a Boost
> library over questionable legal issues, there would be people with a
> vested interest in Boost that might contribute to a legal defense.
> But maybe that's just wishful thinking and unguarded idealism.

I think there's something to it, but it's mostly wishful/idealistic.
> It seems to me that the library review process is probably more
> comprehensive than whatever review comes up during the patent
> process (especially considering the kinds of patents that have been
> issued over time). So I find it difficult to believe that an IP
> lawyer with a bone to pick would have more knowledge of prior art
> than the entire Boost community.

That's probably true, but once a patent is granted, "infringers" are
guilty until proven innocent. Thus, the burden rests with whoever is
named in the suit, and a company with enough resources and lawyers can
bankrupt and/or make life miserable for those individuals.

There are facilities like for fighting

> I would be extremely surprised if anyone could make any worthwhile
> legal claims against any user of a major Boost library because of
> Boost itself.

Whether or not it's "worthwhile" really depends on the goals of those
bringin suit.

                       David Abrahams
   dave_at_[hidden] *
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