MP3 patents (was: Freerunner's Future)

Al Johnson openmoko at
Sat Jun 6 14:57:09 CEST 2009

On Saturday 06 June 2009, Harald Welte wrote:
> On Fri, Jun 05, 2009 at 12:26:42PM -0700, Steve Mosher wrote:
> > I am somewhat constrained in what I am able to say. On one view there is
> > the position, held by some, that any hardware that is merely CAPABLE of
> > mp3 decode is required to apply for a license.
> I think that position cannot hold strong in any court of law.  You cannot
> charge a MP3 license for each and every general purpose computing device. 
> This would mean that e.g. every PC mainboard would have to pay the MP3
> royalties, and I can assure you, they dont ;)
> So even while sisvel or others might claim such a position, it is
> pointless.

That depends on what the point is. It's no good being right if you can't 
afford to prove it. Many will pay for a license they don't need because it's 
cheaper than litigation. It's a legal form of extortion.

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