Legally Yours

A reader of my previous article “TrustedDWG Misconception” generally agreed to my views but pointed out that nothing is a right unless defined by rules and laws. I bet this person is a lawyer.

While this may be true with legal rights, I do not believe it holds true for moral and ethical rights, which are more important to me than legal rights. Moral rights and duties are absolute and cannot be easily twisted to suit oneself because the judge is one’s own conscience, not some third party judge or jury.

If you take this issue to a court, with a good legal team, maybe you will win. You may even get a judgement passed which forces developers not to insert any identifiers into your files. But what will happen after that? Developers will refuse to give you support for any file which they cannot determine came from their software. And why should they? Moreover, there will be no way you will be able to make them give you support, unless you go back to court with a better argument. If you win again then developers may refuse to license their software to you. After all they have the “legal” right to do that. Then what will you do? I know I may be taking this too far, but the point I am trying to make is that you cannot see everything from a legal point of view alone. You will only end up hurting yourself and making your lawyers richer. Remember every action has an equal and opposite reaction.

When we try to excercise our legal rights over others while ignoring our moral and ethical rights and duties, we are actually asking for trouble and trouble is exactly what we get.

  • Legally AutoCADed

    Deelip, I think there needs to be two sides put forward for this argument, since I do not own a licence for AutoCAD, just “permission to use” which AutoDesk may decide to revoke without giving reasons. Then they decide I cannot transfer this “permission to use” to any other person, then they decide they want money as subscription so that I now have the latest and greatest version of the software. Thank goodness I at least have the right to stay with whichever version of their golden code I deem to best fit my needs. Not the bells and whistles, looks so good you want to show everybody version, but the reliable old version that performs on my hardware, and still accepts all of the tweaks that have been required over the years to do my job more quickly. And it writes files that I know all of my colleagues can read with their reliable old version. Why must the end-user pay for R&D that adds frills but does not speed up any other process?

  • Legally AutoCADed

    Deelip, I think there needs to be two sides put forward for this argument, since I do not own a licence for AutoCAD, just “permission to use” which AutoDesk may decide to revoke without giving reasons. Then they decide I cannot transfer this “permission to use” to any other person, then they decide they want money as subscription so that I now have the latest and greatest version of the software. Thank goodness I at least have the right to stay with whichever version of their golden code I deem to best fit my needs. Not the bells and whistles, looks so good you want to show everybody version, but the reliable old version that performs on my hardware, and still accepts all of the tweaks that have been required over the years to do my job more quickly. And it writes files that I know all of my colleagues can read with their reliable old version. Why must the end-user pay for R&D; that adds frills but does not speed up any other process?

  • Deelip Menezes

    Legally AutoCADed, you just made my point. Unfortunately, software companies make use of their position in the industry to force new versions down user’s throats.

  • Deelip Menezes

    Legally AutoCADed, you just made my point. Unfortunately, software companies make use of their position in the industry to force new versions down user’s throats.