We have ath, now what about Broadcom?

M. Warner Losh imp at bsdimp.com
Sat Jul 26 09:43:45 PDT 2003

In message: <20030726101853.O2874 at catalyst.chemikals.org>
            Wesley Morgan <morganw at chemikals.org> writes:
: On Sat, 26 Jul 2003, Doug White wrote:
: > On Fri, 25 Jul 2003, M. Warner Losh wrote:
: >
: > > : Can they now take "they took relevant steps" as a defence in a law court?
: > >
: > > That's a very interesting question.
: >
: > Which might get answered since some industrious folks aligned with a
: > certain other open source operating system are in the process of reverse
: > engineering said devices.
: Would not said software be illegal to distribute in the US?

That's a very interesting question.

The reason I keep saying that is that nobody knows for sure.  Nobody
has reverse engineered anything, got sued and won (or lost).  Just
like the GPL has never been tested in a court of law, reverse
engineering a driver has never been tested.  There have been a few
test cases in other areas, and those may or may not apply to drivers.
Anybody who gives you a definitive answer is full of s*** and is only
speculating based on their legal theories.

However, lots of people have reverse engineered devices in the past,
and those driver are widely available and those people typically
haven't been sued.  Some have, however, and desided to settle rather
than fight.


More information about the freebsd-current mailing list