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FSF Seminars in 2004

FSF Offers Seminars on
Study and Analysis of the GPL and Legal Ethics in Free Software Licensing



On January 20 and 21, 2004, the Free Software Foundation (FSF) will offer two day-long seminars on Free Software Licensing and the GNU GPL at Columbia Law School in New York. The two days will provide a detailed study and analysis of the GPL, review a few case studies and look at legal ethics in Free Software Licensing. The seminars will be co-led by Daniel Ravicher, Senior Counsel to FSF and Bradley M. Kuhn, Executive Director of FSF.

“Detailed Study and Analysis of GPL and LGPL”, the seminar on January 20, will give a section-by-section explanation of the most popular Free Software copyright license, the GNU General Public License (GNU GPL), and will educate lawyers, software developers, managers and business people on how to use the GPL (and GPL'd software) successfully in a new Free Software business and in existing, successful enterprises.

On January 21, FSF will offer “GPL Compliance Case Studies and Legal Ethics in Free Software Licensing”. Also a day-long seminar, which will present the details of five different GPL compliance cases handled by FSF's GPL Compliance Laboratory. Each case offers unique insights into problems that can arise when the terms of GPL are not properly followed, and how diplomatic negotiation between the violator and the copyright holder can yield positive results for both parties. This course also includes a unit on the ethical considerations for attorneys who want to represent clients that make use of or sell Free Software products.

Lunchtime Speaker: Eben Moglen will be the lunchtime speaker. Professor Moglen is Professor of Law and Legal History at Columbia Law School and one of the nation's foremost scholars on copyright, patents and the proposed “Broadcast Flag”. He is also a member of FSF's Board of Directors and the foundation's General Counsel. Professor Moglen has also written extensively on the SCO vs IBM lawsuit.

“Detailed Study and Analysis of GPL and LGPL”
January 20, 9 am to 6 pm

Prerequisites: Attendees should have a general familiarity with software development processes. A basic understanding of how copyright law typically applies to software is also helpful.

Audience: The course is of most interest to lawyers, software developers and managers who run (or have clients who run) software businesses that modify and/or redistribute software under terms of the GNU GPL or LGPL, or who wish to make use of existing GPL'd and LGPL'd software in their enterprise.

The course will include the topics listed below, along with ample time for questions and discussions.

* Free Software Principles and the Free Software Definition
* Preamble of the GNU General Public License (GPL)
* GPL, Section 0: Definitions, etc.
* GPL, Section 1: Grant for Verbatim Source Copying
* Derivative Works: Statute and Case Law
* GPL, Section 2: Grants for Source Derivative Works
* GPL, Section 3: Grants for Creating Binary Derivative Works
* The Implied Patent Grant in GPL
* GPL, Section 4: Termination of License
* GPL, Section 5: Acceptance of License
* GPL, Section 6: Prohibition on Further Restrictions
* GPL, Section 7: Conflicts with other Agreements or Orders
* GPL, Section 8: International Licensing Issues
* GPL, Section 9: FSF as GPL's Stewards
* GPL, Section 10: Copyright Holder's Exceptions to GPL
* GPL, Section 11: Disclaimer of Warranties
* GPL, Section 12: Limitation of Liability
* Lesser General Public License (LGPL)

For more details, please visit http://www.gnu.org/licenses/200104_seminar.html.

“GPL Compliance Case Studies and Legal Ethics in Free Software Licensing”
January 21, 9 am to 6 pm

Prerequisites: Attendees should have successfully completed the course, a Detailed Study and Analysis of GPL and LGPL, as the material from that course forms the building blocks for this material, or have attended a previous Free Software Licensing and the GNU GPL Seminar.

Audience: The course is of most interest to lawyers who have clients or employers that deal with Free Software on a regular basis. However, technical managers and executives whose businesses use or distribute Free Software will also find the course very helpful.

The course will include the topics listed below, along with ample time for questions and discussions.

GPL Compliance Case Studies:

* Overview of FSF's GPL Compliance Lab

* GPL Violation Case Study A
- Explains how FSF deals with sometimes belligerent violators.
* GPL Violation Case Study B
- Explains how smoothly violations can be resolved and the process that an otherwise friendly violator can expect.
* GPL Violation Case Study C
- Problems faced regarding kernel modules for device drivers for government-regulated hardware, and cases where both an upstream provider and a downstream distributor are in violation on separate matters.
* GPL Violation Case Study D
- Violations from a company committed to doing Free Software but has occasional GPL violations or near-violations.
* Good Practices for GPL Compliance

Ethical Considerations for the Attorney Practicing Free Software

* Part I: Representing Free Software Clients
* Part II: Practicing Free Software
* Part III: More General Ethical Considerations Relevant to Free Software

For more details, please visit http://www.gnu.org/licenses/210104_seminar.html.


Pricing (Book by December 24, 2003 for registration discount):

Both Courses: $875 for registrations on or before December 24, 2003 and $975 after December 24
First Course Only: $495 for registrations on or before December 24, 2003 and $595 after December 24

Financial Aid Policy: Applicants with annual incomes of up to $15,000 are entitled to a 75% discount. People with incomes between $15,000 and $30,000 receive a 50% discount. Any member of the judiciary, academics or attorneys from non-profit organizations receive a 10% discount. If you fall within one of these categories, please contact John at <johns@fsf.org> or Ravi at <ravi@fsf.org> or by phone at 617.620.9640.

CLE Credits: Attorneys who successfully complete “Detailed Study and Analysis of GPL and LGPL” on January 20, will be entitled to 7 New York Transitional CLE credits. Those who complete “GPL Compliance Case Studies and Legal Ethics in Free Software Licensing” on January 21, will be entitled to a total of 7.5 New York Transitional CLE credits, 3 in the area of Professional Practice and 4.5 toward the Ethics and Professionalism requirments.

Companies that have signed up as Corporate Patrons of FSF receive two complimentary seats at the seminar and reduced rates for additional participants. Please contact patron@fsf.org for more details. You can find out more about the Corporate Patron Program at http://patron.fsf.org.

Both days of the seminar will be held at Columbia Law School in New York. Directions will be sent following registration. For more information, please contact Ravi Khanna, FSF's Director of Communication at <ravi@fsf.org> or by calling 1+617-620-9640.

 [FSF logo] “Our mission is to preserve, protect and promote the freedom to use, study, copy, modify, and redistribute computer software, and to defend the rights of Free Software users.”

The Free Software Foundation is the principal organizational sponsor of the GNU Operating System. Support GNU and the FSF by buying manuals and gear, joining the FSF as an associate member, or making a donation, either directly to the FSF or via Flattr.

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