Open Source Community wins an important case
KAM Industries has settled a copyright infringement and DMCA violation case filed by Jacobson with respect to an Open Source Software. The case relates to a Model Rail Road software, which was made available by Jacobson under the Artistic License. Jacobson alleged in the complaint that KAM industries violated his rights under the copyright law by incorporating code from his software in its Decoder Commander software in violation of license terms. Jacobson also alleged that removal of copyright notices by KAM Industries amounts to violation of DMCA provisions.
The case is very significant in US jurisprudence because the Federal Court for the first time in US history held in this case that violation of license terms of an Open Source Software amounts to copyright infringement. On remand from the appeals court, the District Court stated that KAM Industries is liable for copyright infringement and violation of DMCA provisions. KAM Industries has now settled the case by agreeing to pay Jacobson a sum of hundred thousand dollars as damages.
This settlement puts an end to a very important case in the history of OSS. litigation. In addition to the aforesaid, the case is also very important because it provides the court in the case pointed out that the value of an Open Source Software can be estimated based on efforts and damages are ascertainable for violation of rights in Open Source Software.