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GPL lawsuit to settle?

by Paul Jay, CBCNews.ca

The first U.S. lawsuit over a violation of a public license that governs open-source software appears to be heading towards a quick out-of-court settlement, according to the latest reports.

Last week the Software Freedom Law Center (SFLC) filed a lawsuit against Monsoon Multimedia on behalf of the developers of BusyBox, a small application whose source code is made freely available for others to modify. The SFLC said Monsoon had violated version 2 of the GNU General Public License when it used the open-source BusyBox software but did not make its own code freely available.

In a press release on Monday Monsoon Multimedia said it was in violation of the GPL and will release its modified BusyBox code in compliance with the license.

"Since we intend to and always intended to comply with all open source software license requirements, we are confident that the matter will be quickly resolved," Graham Radstone, chairman and COO at Monsoon Multimedia, said Monday in a statement.

The case had attracted interest in the software industry as a potential test-case of the enforceability of the GPL.

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