"Chromium" removed from maemo.org repositories

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2010-06-10 12:55 UTC by Andrew Flegg

This is a joint statement from Nokia and the Maemo Community Council.

A few weeks ago we received a letter requesting that maemo.org cease distribution of Chromium, due to ongoing litigation involving the software.

The Community Council, the package maintainer of Chromium on maemo.org and Nokia legal were contacted.

As you are aware, it is Nokia's policy to respect the intellectual property rights of third parties. Thus, we suggested that Chromium be removed from maemo.org while the situation was clarified.

Nokia legal will be taking a look on the roles and responsibilities of maemo.org. This work should clarify the roles on maemo.org so the process would be clear if we were to receive any future requirements as the one from Red Bend.

 

Comments:

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Serhiy Zahoriya
Karma: 355

The trial was planned on 2011-05-14 and there are no updates. What was the result?

2012-02-22 03:10 UTC
Simon R
Karma: 11

Andy: IANAL, but it would be ridiculous to me for someone to start a patent infringement lawsuit against an individual in such circumstances. Chromium in maemo would have no need to even use the binary update mechanism that is at issue, so this seems to me to be lawyers running amok, and if I had Chromium on my device, I'd keep using it.

2010-11-05 18:22 UTC
Andy Pham
Karma: 251

What about users who already installed Chromium? Is it "legally questionable" for said users to continue to use/have Chromium on their device?

2010-07-02 22:53 UTC
Ian Stirling
Karma: 512

To expand on the above.

The issue is not open source. It is that Red Bend software have a patent on the rapid-update technology used to update the binary over slow connections for updates.

(or they believe they do, which has much the same effect up till you win in court).

To be perfectly fine legally would be to take the chrome repository, and fork it.

This fork would need to have none of the source-code of courgette - that would need totally ripped out of any revision history that was kept.

Then build a binary from that.

You will certainly win any court case that ensues, if competently represented.

However, that does not mean that you, or if it's a Nokia repository, Nokia, won't face time in court - for which you may not get your costs back.

And competent representation may not be free - especially if the other side bring a big bag of lawyers.

2010-06-12 11:31 UTC
Angel Marin
Karma: 5

Fedora/RedHat had a similar situation earlier this year (http://spot.livejournal.com/313759.html) with the chromium packages (even though they don't have them in their official repos), but after some surgery to the codebase they went back to shipping the packages.

You might want to contact them to see what parts of the code they had to remove to keep their legal department happy.

2010-06-11 12:43 UTC
Benoît HERVIER
Karma: 1412

Oh !!!! Congratulations !!!

I ask also for some of my packages to be removed ! But it wasn't a success.

2010-06-11 12:26 UTC
Felipe Contreras
Karma: 447

Chromium is not owned by anyone, Chrome is. Just like WebKit is not owned, Safari is, or Fedora is not owned, RedHat EL is.

maemo.org extras is a community repository... it's not owned by Nokia, and as such, Nokia interests do not matter. We are not talking about Apple Store.

Or is Nokia going to remove MPlayer, console emulators, and other kinds of software that might infringe patents?

I want to install Chromium on my device, Nokia should not prevent that.

2010-06-10 22:51 UTC
Andrew Flegg
Karma: 3326

Zachary, thoughts specifically about your points can be found here: http://talk.maemo.org/showpost.php?p=708941&postcount=20

2010-06-10 16:03 UTC
Zachary Goldberg
Karma: 108

"As you are aware, it is Nokia's policy to respect the intellectual property rights of third parties. Thus, we suggested that Chromium be removed from maemo.org while the situation was clarified."

If it was a fact that chromium violated somebody's IP I would have no problem with the execution of this policy here. However the IP invovled is still in question and not yet decided, so I would think that Nokia/Maemo would have no obligation to remove the software until it was. Any thoughts?

2010-06-10 15:51 UTC
Andrew Flegg
Karma: 3326

Open source doesn't mean that a company can't sue you for (allegedly) violating its patents.

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2009/10/28/red_bend_sues_google/

Hopefully this situation can be resolved relatively quickly (lawyers are never quick), and Chromium can go back into the repos.

2010-06-10 15:07 UTC
hyar tep
Karma: 73

could you, please, write more about the problem / litigation?

i don't know the situation and others probably too.

thanks.

btw: the link [1] is not working for me

2010-06-10 15:02 UTC
Joseph Charpak
Karma: 121

Huh. Isn't Chromium open source? Isn't that the point? Isn't Chromium the open source bits from Chrome?

2010-06-10 15:00 UTC
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