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US Navy found guilty of piracy

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    Nat Quinn
    A court has ordered the US Navy to pay a company $154,400 (R2.61 million) for using its 3D virtual reality software on hundreds of PCs without valid licences, Gizmodo reports.
    Bitmanagement Software GmbH first filed the lawsuit in 2016, initially seeking compensation to the tune of nearly $600 million for “willful” copyright infringement by the military branch.
    It alleged the navy had planned to install the BS Contact Geo program onto at least 558,466 machines while it only had 38 licences and was negotiating to acquire more.
    “Bitmanagement did not license or otherwise authorise these uses of its software, and the Navy has never compensated Bitmanagement for these uses of Bitmanagement’s software,” the lawsuit stated.
    “The government knew or should have known that it was required to obtain a license for copying Bitmanagement software onto each of the devices that had Bitmanagement software installed.”
    “The government nonetheless failed to obtain such licenses.”
    But the navy’s defence team argued that the licences it had obtained permitted it to make additional copies without further payments.
    Nevertheless, it uninstalled the software from all its PCs and reinstalled it on 34 systems “for inventory purposes” shortly after the lawsuit was filed.
    How judge decided on compensation
    The company based its nearly $600 million claim on each of the 558,466 licences being worth $1,067.76.
    However, the navy’s expert witness, a Pricewaterhouse Coopers accountant, calculated the price per licence amounted to $200 when considering that the military would likely have received a bulk discount after negotiations with the software company.
    He also took into consideration usage figures provided by the navy, which showed the maximum uses of the software per day was 36, the unique number of users was 411, and the total users were 1,143
    He further worked out an estimated number of unique users that accessed the software without a licence to be around 597 during the damages period.
    In addition, it was found that the navy would have agreed to buy 100 simultaneous-use licences for $350 each.
    The judge found these estimations reliable, resulting in the $154,400 award to the software company, plus delay compensation to be determined later.


    US Navy found guilty of piracy (mybroadband.co.za)

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