[osflash] Legal Considerations That Concern Us All - Was: Re:MTASC Future
hank777 at gmail.com
Wed Oct 26 05:59:07 PDT 2005
My rant was just about the fact that since it's
> impossible for us (which are not lawyers) to get a definite answer to our
> legal questions, and since Macromedia is doing some FUD
This was said several times, and you dont actually know it to be true.
Now it turns out I am not a lawyer. But I am fairly expert in UP IP law.
There are lawyers that are experts in suing people for hitting them in
car accidents. (We call them ambulance chasers in the US). They may be
lawyers, but they are not qualified to talk about intellectual
property law, regardless of how many letters are behind their name. In
fact, I am confident I am more qualifed than most garden variety
lawyers to discuss this issue in depth.
My qualifications to opine on this issue come from a variety of issues.
For the last 10 years of my professional life I have worked within,
and started companies at the nexus of entertainment and technology, I
am at least as qualified to discuss this issue as all but the
attorneys most focused on IP law.
I believe my qualifications come in part from the following.
a. I have 5 patents, several of which I wrote 60-70% of, and for
which, at the time, I learned exactly what is and isnt patentable, and
b. Because one of my patents was probably infringed a few years ago, I
have studied what the issues regarding prosecution of patents are. I
have consulted counsel about it and received detailed (and expensive)
counsel on what does and does not constitute infringement and why.
c. Because I was CEO of a internet music company. Though it was not a
big company, it was not a small company (100+ employees). I negotiated
for two years with all the major music companies and recieved what at
the time were the first digital, whole catalog content licenses. I sat
on the other side of the table and negotiated against some of the most
knowledgeable minds in copyright law. This is when the Digital
Millenium Copyright Act) had just been passed, and threw the meaning
of certain aspects of copyright law into question. At the time I
studied the law page by page. Our agreements were based on the law,
and I have since followed all of the challenges to the law.
d. As a technology business person, you cannot develop products
without having great legal representation to guide you on what is and
isnt legal. Over the years I have had such great representation. I
have, aditionally from them, honed my knowledge about this subject.
In summary, my point is, my opinions cannot be dismissed because I am
"not a lawyer". It is true that even lawyers are not always right. In
fact, by virtue of the adversarial system, exactly 50% of the time
they are wrong.
Nevertheless, I am certainly confident enough to debate the issues at
the highest possible level, and to suggest, that if Mike Chambers, or
any other lawyer at Adobe/Macromedia has a problem with what we are
doing that they should do so by providing controlling case law, or
quotations of specific US laws that would invalidate or call into
question my arguments. At that point, perhaps this should be moved to
a groklaw thread.
More information about the osflash