[FSFE PR][EN] [GNU/FSF Press] FSF Lawyer and Board Member Serves as Expert Witness in Lawsuit Related to GNU GPL

Bradley M. Kuhn pr at fsf.org
Tue Feb 26 21:36:37 CET 2002


Media Contact: Free Software Foundation
Bradley M. Kuhn <pr at gnu.org>
Phone: +1-617-542-5942

           FSF Lawyer and Board Member Serves as Expert Witness
                      in Lawsuit Related to GNU GPL

Boston, Massachusetts, USA - Tuesday, February, 26, 2002 - Eben Moglen,
General Counsel to the Free Software Foundation (FSF), will testify as an
expert witness in the Progress Software Corporation vs. MySQL AB case
currently pending in United States District Court in Massachusetts.  The
current focus of this case is a preliminary injunction sought by MySQL AB
concerning a violation of the GNU General Public License (GPL) by Progress
Software Corp.

Progress lost the right to distribute MySQL due to a violation of the GNU
GPL.  Progress distributed a proprietary software component, Gemini, that
combined with the GPL'ed MySQL database system.  Gemini was linked
statically with the MySQL system to form a single binary program.  Many
times, the FSF has enforced the GNU GPL in such situations, when our
copyrights were at stake.  We do such enforcement in a confidential
setting without the need of court action.  Since Progress distributes no
FSF-copyrighted code, the FSF is not a party in the case; however, the FSF
takes a strong position that Progress is indeed in violation of the GNU

Moglen said: "In our minds, Progress Software Corp. has committed a
garden-variety violation of the GNU GPL.  We expect to prevail as we
assist MySQL AB in their enforcement action.  We are quite surprised that
Progress has brought the action this far."

The preliminary injunction hearing will take place at 2:00 PM on
Wednesday, February, 27, 2002 at the Federal Court House in Boston,
Massachusetts in the court of Judge Patti B. Saris.

Moglen's full affidavit in this case is available at
http://www.fsf.org/press/mysql-affidavit.html.  Moglen's full essay about
enforcing the GNU GPL is available at

About Eben Moglen:

Eben Moglen holds a PhD. in history and a J.D. from Yale University.
Moglen is currently a professor of law and legal history at Columbia
University Law School, and serves as general counsel for the Free Software

About Free Software Foundation:

The Free Software Foundation, founded in 1985, is dedicated to promoting
computer users' right to use, study, copy, modify, and redistribute
computer programs.  The FSF promotes the development and use of free (as
in freedom) software---particularly the GNU operating system and its
GNU/Linux variants---and free documentation for free software.  The FSF
also helps to spread awareness of the ethical and political issues of
freedom in the use of software.  Their web site, located at
http://www.gnu.org, is an important source of information about GNU/Linux.
They are headquartered in Boston, MA, USA.

Copyright (C) 2002 Free Software Foundation, Inc.
                   59 Temple Place - Suite 330, Boston, MA 02111, USA

Verbatim copying and distribution of this entire article is permitted in
any medium, provided this notice is preserved.
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