06 Aug Watch out, developers: Here come the lawyers
Developers who ‘knowingly’ ship buggy software may be held liable for damages. That might be good for users — but a sloppy set of guidelines could hurt open source.
Here’s an odd couple: Microsoft and the Linux Foundation. These two organizations, normally on opposite sides of almost any issue, agree that a new set of guidelines making software vendors liable for knowingly shipping buggy software is badly off base. They claim that the guidelines are likely to lead to a flood of expensive lawsuits against both large commercial vendors and small-scale open source developers. What’s more, it could impose expensive obligations to scour support forums and the like for notice of problems, a procedure that would be overly burdensome for small developers, say critics.
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