Thomson Reuters Lawsuit Against Zotero Dismissed

By Kristopher A. Nelson in

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George Mason University
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Sean, a Zotero co-director, announced yesterday that the lawsuit filed by Thomson Reuters (makers of EndNote) was dismissed yesterday:

I’m delighted to announce that this morning the Fairfax Circuit Court dismissed the lawsuit filed against Zotero by Thomson Reuters. The lawsuit had claimed that the Center for History and New Media “reverse-engineered” Thomson Reuters’s EndNote software to provide data interoperability between Zotero and EndNote.

via Thomson Reuters Lawsuit Dismissed at The Quintessence of Ham.

While some are billing this as a victory for open-source software – which, in some sense at least, it is, since it avoids a further attack on this front against Zotero development – the case was never quite about copyright or open source. In its essense, this case instead focused on a contract claim that George Mason University violated the EndNote contract by developing an “import” feature for Zotero. The GMU site license for EndNote (which I understand GMU did not renew) forbid reverse engineering, and Thomson Reuters believed that this was the method used by Zotero’s developers to create the EndNote import function.

Details are still sketchy, but Sean promises to have court transcripts up next week.