I admire Carl Malamud immensely and have had the good fortune to help his efforts over the years. Joe Mullin explains Carl’s latest efforts, to free access to Georgia’s legal code from a $1000+ price take, efforts that have netted him a lawsuit. The article is worth a read for the clear explanation of the basis of the state’s case, a claim that annotations on the code are copyright protected even if the text of the law is unencumbered. This is a difference without distinction since the only available text is the one with the annotations. I don’t see Carl backing down, this is a case worth following.
Georgia lawmakers’ response to Malamud’s gifts was anything but peachy. “Your unlawful copying… Infringes on the exclusive copyright of the state of Georgia,” read the response letter, written by the chairman of Georgia’s Code Revision Commission, Josh McKoon. “Accordingly, you are hereby notified to CEASE AND DESIST ALL COPYRIGHT INFRINGEMENT.”