German court case could imperil GPL licensing

In a case that could threaten open source GPL licensing in Germany, a Berlin court yesterday began hearing a lawsuit from German DSL router vendor AVM against web-filtering software firm Cybits. AVM charges that by modifying Linux kernel code in router firmware, Cybits is infringing on copyright, while Cybits’ defense claims GPL licensing permits it to alter the code.

On June 21, the District Court of Berlin began hearing a lawsuit from AVM against Cybits that “may have enormous consequences for the way that software is developed and distributed,” according to an announcement on the open source advocacy website by Linux kernel developer Harald Weldt.


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