Today, on the 20th of May 2020, the GNOME Foundation, Rothschild Patent Imaging, and Leigh M. Rothschild are pleased to announce that the patent dispute between Rothschild Patent Imaging and GNOME has been settled.
In this walk-away settlement, GNOME receives a release and covenant not to be sued for any patent held by Rothschild Patent Imaging. Further, both Rothschild Patent Imaging and Leigh Rothschild are granting a release and covenant to any software that is released under an existing Open Source Initiative approved license (and subsequent versions thereof), including for the entire Rothschild portfolio of patents, to the extent such software forms a material part of the infringement allegation.
Neil McGovern, Executive Director for the GNOME Foundation said “I’m exceptionally pleased that we have concluded this case. This will allow us to refocus our attention on creating a free software desktop, and will ensure certainty for all free and open source software in future.”
Leigh Rothschild said “I’m pleased that we have managed to settle this issue amicably. I have always supported the innovation of open source software and its developers and encourage its innovation and adoption.”
GNOME was represented pro-bono by Matt Berkowitz, Kieran Kieckhefer, Joy Wang and Larry Crouch from Shearman & Sterling LLP. GNOME and the wider free and open source community owes its thanks and gratitude to their tireless work over the past 10 months.
Okay… but what does it mean?
Why release patents to software with an OSI-approved license? That just makes it more confusing because it creates a class of patents that are okay to use without permission… WTF?
Um, pretty sure “support” includes not suing folks.