Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 14th Apr 2008 21:44 UTC
Apple The website of a Miami-based networking and security solutions reseller became inaccessible Monday, shortly after the company began advertising an unauthorized Mac clone for a fraction of the cost of Apple's cheapest system. Dubbed OpenMac, the USD 400 offering from Psystar Corporation is described as 'a low-cost high-performance computing platform' based on the ongoing OSX86Project - a hacker-based initiative aimed at maintaining a version of the Mac OS X operating system for everyday PCs. The website is back online now, and the machine has been renamed to Open Computer. Update: Psystar says they will continue to sell the Open Computer system, despite the fact that it appears to violate Apple's EULA. "We're not breaking any laws," they insisted.
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Its not really about Eulas
by alcibiades on Tue 15th Apr 2008 07:11 UTC
Member since:

It is about post sales restrictions on use. They are unlawful in all of the OECD. You cannot tell people what to do with what they have bought, not in a Eula, not in a signed contract. Contrary to anti trust law.

Eulas can be valid. But not where their provisions conflict with consumer protection or anti trust law.

Apple cannot stop you from installing OSX on whatever you want. MS cannot stop you using Office under Wine. You cannot sign away your consumer protection rights by sending in a guarantee form.

Anyone who thinks its not a sale needs to produce a case showing it. Not an Indian or Chinese case, a case from the US, Canada or EU. In the present case, they need to produce a US Court decision. Where is it?

Its a sale. Consequently, you can do what you want with it.

Notice, this may not apply to arrangements whereby in exchange for an annual fee, a company obtains a "license" to software on a certain number of stations. That really may well be a license or a lease or rental or whatever. But going up to the cash register and walking out with a retail copy, that one is a sale. Whatever the Eula says.

Reply Score: 4

RE: Its not really about Eulas
by rajan r on Tue 15th Apr 2008 09:16 in reply to "Its not really about Eulas"
rajan r Member since:

Uhm, perhaps in certain European countries, but you clearly don't have an understanding of contract law, at least in the context of common law countries. When you buy, say, Leopard - you're not buying the *software* itself, rather, a license to use it. That's why the source code of Leopard does not come with the box you buy at a Apple Store: you didn't buy the software, merely the right to use it in a limited manner.

As for post-sales restrictions of use, that's a bit complicated, but in most countries, especially common-law ones (where "business efficacy" and "officious bystander" is widely practice in deciding these cases), I don't think there's much of a problem because 1) the contract can be read (online or elsewhere) prior to buying it, and 2) the software can be refunded and returned if you don't agree with the EULA.

As for anti-trust, it is possible (competition law, for efficacy's sake, needs to be vague) - but extremely unlikely. It's hard to rule Apple's position a monopolistic one (it's like saying Ford has a monopoly of producing Ford cards). For one, there is no remote chance where users *have* to use Mac OS, thus no reason for Psystar doesn't have a case to say they needed to sell the computers with OS X.

It would be significantly easier on Psystar if they didn't offer to install Leopard for users: they won't be the one breaking the EULA, it would be the users. And they wouldn't be offering to break contract law.

Reply Parent Score: 3

alcibiades Member since:

Cite one EU case in which post-sales restrictions on use have been enforced. Just one.

Eulas may have enforceable clauses, but post sales restrictions on use are not enforceable in the EU because they are anti-competitive.

Reply Parent Score: 4