2003 August 26 PM [1:38 pm]
(entry last updated: 2003-08-26 17:43:19)
Ed Felten’s take on Bunner: Trade Secrets and Free Speech.
A famed mod-chip case settled: Lik-Sang settles mod chip case out of court
Former online retailer Lik-Sang International has settled a case brought by Sony out of court, undertaking to cease trade in any copyright circumvention devices and paying an undisclosed compensation sum.
However, it continues to fight similar cases against Nintendo and Microsoft, both of whom were involved in the action against the company in September of last year which won an injunction against it for selling copyright circumvention devices.
A provocative question: A legal fix for software flaws?
Problems with physical products routinely yield multimillion-dollar verdicts and settlements in litigation-happy America. But software vendors are largely protected from product defect claims thanks to unusual exemptions enshrined in typical software licenses–boilerplate known in the industry as End User License Agreements (EULAs) or “shrink-wrap” licenses, so called because they’re often printed inside the shrink-wrapped box containing the product or incorporated into the software itself.
[...] [R]epeated failures are leading some irked security experts to press for changes in software liability law to better motivate companies to fix buggy and insecure code.
“If the laws got changed that forced software makers to be held liable–criminally, civilly, financially–for their products, we’d see a marked increase in product quality, security and stability,” said Richard Forno, an author and security consultant. “The EULA is the slickest ‘Get out of jail free card’ I can think of in recent years.”