RSS - Regulations, Statutes and Standards TMC

File Format Trademark Infringement Dispute Between Autodesk and Open Design Alliance Set for January Hearing

December 8, 2006

A trademark infringement injunction set for a U.S. District Court hearing on January 18 in Seattle has the potential to deeply affect development of software in proprietary file formats.

The suit, Autodesk vs. Open Design Alliance (PDF here) stems from the fact that software developer AutoDesk has introduced a feature in its widely used AUTOCAD-related "TrustedDWG" .dwg file format.

ODA's problem is not with the .dwg file format itself, but with an action that occurs when a file with that extension is created and saved. When a .dwg is saved, an identifying watermark is inserted, noting theat the file has been created as a TrustedDWG.

But when AutoCAD opens a file without the watermark- say a file created as a .dwg by a third party, a warning dialog pops up that cautions the user that the file was not specifically authorized by Autodesk and could afflict "stability issues" if it were used.

Users can disable these warnings, and then go ahead and use these "non-trusted" files. But just the spectre of these warnings is seen as a deterrent to projects created by Open Design Alliance Members.

To get around these issues, ODA created its own class of files that would get around AutoCAD's flag. Autodesk sued the ODA, alleging trademark infringement. The U.S. District Court issued a restraining order, which will be revisited on January 18.




Related Tags: ,

Listed below are links to sites that reference File Format Trademark Infringement Dispute Between Autodesk and Open Design Alliance Set for January Hearing:

Trackback Pings

TrackBack URL for File Format Trademark Infringement Dispute Between Autodesk and Open Design Alliance Set for January Hearing:
http://blog.tmcnet.com/mt3/t.fcgi/31160

Comments to File Format Trademark Infringement Dispute Between Autodesk and Open Design Alliance Set for January Hearing


(If you haven't left a comment here before, you may need to be approved by the site owner before your comment will appear. Until then, it won't appear on the entry. Thanks for waiting.)