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Author Topic: Sourceforge is hosting a bogus Tiny Core project.  (Read 24944 times)

Offline roberts

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Sourceforge is hosting a bogus Tiny Core project.
« on: March 23, 2011, 05:22:46 PM »
Just when you think that things could not get any worse, Ibiblio down affecting our repositories, Bluehost take down of website, forums, and wiki and now...

http://sourceforge.net/projects/tinycorelinux/

This individual Dave Bukov, aka grimaldo, pretending to be the developer of Tiny Core Linux.
And, yes, of course, asking donations for his work.

When I contacted Sourceforge with a take down request, I was told that if it is copyrighted material that I need to contact legal and prove it. It is not copyrighted.  It is GPL.  But pretending to be the developer seeking donations for someone else's work is fraud.

The isos posted at Sourceforge are md5 the same as the ones I post here. Unchanged!

Perhaps someone in our community with legal experience will step forward to help stop this fraud.
Sourceforge promotes fraud. Sourceforge is a disservice to the FOSS community.
« Last Edit: March 26, 2011, 10:37:52 AM by roberts »
10+ Years Contributing to Linux Open Source Projects.

Offline LukeShu

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Re: Sourceforge is promoting fraud!
« Reply #1 on: March 23, 2011, 06:28:17 PM »
First of all, a copyright on the software does exist, even if it is GPL'ed; the GPL is a license, and relies on copyright in order to work. (see http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/)

Now, because the terms of the GPL require free redistribution, in general the person doing this would be perfectly within their legal rights granted to them by the GPL.  Such is the nature of freedom; some can abuse it.

However, the GPL adds an important stipulation to that -- the distributor must either provide the source code, or a written offer for it.  There is such an offer included in the ISOs, but it is from the developers, not from grimaldo.  Since grimaldo is distributing binaries, he must also distribute source; what if the the real TinyCore hosting went down; he must take responsibility.

So, you should
1) Find the copyright owner of a file included in the ISO.  This is usually the developer who is the principal author of the file.  It does not work to just say "Linux/Glibc/BusyBox is GPL'ed"; it must be the copyright owner who presses legal action.
2) Find documentation that he is. This usually means either a changelog, or his name somewhere in the file.
3) Have the copyright owner send this information to SourceForge, labeling it as a ``GPL violation''.

Note: I am not a lawer, this is not legal advice.

[edit:] Derp, you are the lead developer.  But the trick is finding documentation that you own the copyright.  So even if you did write a file, it may be easier to just find a different file that has someone's name it it and say to them ``Hey, send this to SourceForge.''
« Last Edit: March 23, 2011, 07:02:15 PM by LukeShu »

Online Rich

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Re: Sourceforge is promoting fraud!
« Reply #2 on: March 23, 2011, 07:57:08 PM »
Hi roberts
That really stinks. This guy posted 7 other projects as his own on the same day. Maybe emailing
the owners of some of those projects to get a few more complaints lodged against this guy
might help some.

Offline maro

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Re: Sourceforge is promoting fraud!
« Reply #3 on: March 23, 2011, 10:16:58 PM »
I'm also not a laywer, but was just wondering whether bringing this issue to a "wider audience" would result in a different answer from Sourceforge.

I'd imagine that bringing it to the attention of Linux news sites like
    http://lwn.net
    http://www.h-online.com/news/
    http://www.phoronix.com
could help to get more traction.

Offline bmarkus

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Re: Sourceforge is promoting fraud!
« Reply #4 on: March 23, 2011, 10:25:46 PM »
Facing to similar stories few times in other segment I have some experience even if I'm not a lawyer.

First point is the country if this guy. I he is in US it makes situation more complicated due to the different US legal environment.

Next point does any party have a (US) patent for TC? If he got (what I doubt) it is a long and costly legal case. In such case the crucial question who was the first and it must be proven by parties. Lets see TC.

SourceForge project was registered on March 21, 2011 while TC in December 2008. You can use domain registration date for example as an evidence. Alsi you can refer to DISTROWATCH article, reviews in newspapers, CD's distributed by newspapers with CD, last years LINUX exhibition in CA.

Product introduction at TC WEB:

Quote
Tiny Core Linux is a very small (10 MB) minimal Linux GUI Desktop. It is based on Linux 2.6 kernel, Busybox, Tiny X, and Fltk. The core runs entirely in ram and boots very quickly. Also offered is Micro Core a 6 MB image that is the console based engine of Tiny Core. CLI versions of Tiny Core's program allows the same functionality of Tiny Core's extensions only starting with a console based system.

Product description at SF:

Quote
Tiny Core Linux is a very small (10 MB) minimal Linux GUI Desktop. It is based on Linux 2.6 kernel, Busybox, Tiny X, and Fltk. The core runs entirely in ram and boots very quickly.

No comment. Please take above and submit officially to SF proving you are the owner of TinyCore. And of course with a friendly note giving a certain time to delete SF product otherwise you initiate a legal action.

It would be worth to check SF contract BTW. I'm pretty sure that there is paragraph about ownership, copyright, .... It can be referred also that other party is breaking their contract.

One more thing, you can register TC logo as a TradeMark. It is less costly than patent but gives some protection. TM is strictly for a graphical appearance of the logo related to the product and not about content. What they are checking is there a similar logo and/or name in the same segment as yours so yours can be misinterpreted and identified as the other.

Béla
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Offline bmarkus

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Re: Sourceforge is promoting fraud!
« Reply #5 on: March 23, 2011, 10:29:48 PM »
I'm also not a laywer, but was just wondering whether bringing this issue to a "wider audience" would result in a different answer from Sourceforge.

I'd imagine that bringing it to the attention of Linux news sites like
    http://lwn.net
    http://www.h-online.com/news/
    http://www.phoronix.com
could help to get more traction.

First I would try to arrange it with Geeknet (SF owner) using facts above. If no success, check other projects of this guy. If there are others, contact their original authors and go back to SF jointly.

If no success, find a layer in the community to submit an official claim to SF.

If still no success, go to public.

If still no success, go to the Court as a final solution. But it can't happen in an OpenSource community. There are business drivers, lost millions, ... Just a a ....
« Last Edit: March 23, 2011, 10:45:09 PM by bmarkus »
Béla
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Offline bmarkus

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Re: Sourceforge is promoting fraud!
« Reply #6 on: March 23, 2011, 10:49:05 PM »
Extract from Terms and Conditions ( http://sourceforge.net/apps/trac/sitelegal/wiki/Terms_of_Use ):


Prohibited Usage ¶

In addition to the above, you may not access or use SourceForge.net for any purpose other than that for which Geeknet makes it available.

Without limiting any other remedies, Geeknet may suspend or terminate your SourceForge.net account if we suspect that you have engaged in unlawful or prohibited activity in connection with SourceForge.net.

Geeknet reserves the right, in its sole discretion to investigate and take appropriate legal action against anyone who, in Geeknet's sole discretion violates this provision. Prohibited activity includes, but is not limited to:

   1. illegal or tortious activity, including child .ography, fraud, trafficking in obscene material, drug dealing, gambling, harassment, stalking (including using any information obtained on or via SourceForge.net to harass, abuse, stalk, or harm another person), spamming, copyright infringement, patent infringement, or theft of trade secrets;
   2. using any information obtained from SourceForge.net in order to contact, advertise to, solicit, or sell to any user without such user's prior explicit consent (including non-commercial contacts like chain letters);
   3. compiling or collecting Associated Content, Site Materials, or Sponsor Content from SourceForge.net as part of a database or other work;
   4. interfering with, disrupting, or creating an undue burden on SourceForge.net or the networks or services connected to SourceForge.net, including, without limitation, any attempt to circumvent the access controls or security measures of SourceForge.net;
   5. accessing SourceForge.net by any means other than through interfaces provided by Geeknet, unless otherwise specifically authorized by Geeknet in a separate, prior written agreement;
   6. circumventing, disabling or otherwise interfering with security-related features of SourceForge.net, or features that prevent or restrict use or copying of any Materials or enforce limitations on use of SourceForge.net or the Materials therein;
   7. attempting to impersonate another user or person, using the user account of another person, and selling or otherwise transferring your user account, or otherwise misrepresenting your affiliation with a person or entity; and,
   8. selling, reselling or offering for any commercial purposes, any portion of, use of, or access to SourceForge.net, except where specifically endorsed or approved by Geeknet.

Béla
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Offline danielibarnes

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Re: Sourceforge is promoting fraud!
« Reply #7 on: March 23, 2011, 10:49:16 PM »
Do not be quick to judge. I'd recommend finding out what is going on and giving the individual an opportunity to take corrective action. This may be accidental and not an intentional attempt to claim ownership of any of these projects.

He is creating a distro based on Tiny Core Linux, called "Boothorn DistrOS." The boot.msg file for it includes "based on Tiny Core Linux."

Offline vinnie

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Re: Sourceforge is promoting fraud!
« Reply #8 on: March 23, 2011, 10:56:29 PM »
http://grimaldo.users.sourceforge.net/ this is all project shared by "Dave Bukove"


Emails are in the respective sites

GRUB Invaders http://www.erikyyy.de/invaders/
RIPLinuX http://www.tux.org/pub/people/kent-robotti/looplinux/rip/
Puppy Studio was created by a l0wt3ch ? is user of puppy forum
Aptosid is by Stefan Lippers-Hollmannn , look for his email on this page finding "gmx" http://manual.aptosid.com/en/cd-dl-burning-en.htm
« Last Edit: March 24, 2011, 12:28:48 AM by vinnie »

Offline bmarkus

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Re: Sourceforge is promoting fraud!
« Reply #9 on: March 23, 2011, 11:07:42 PM »
Do not be quick to judge. I'd recommend finding out what is going on and giving the individual an opportunity to take corrective action. This may be accidental and not an intentional attempt to claim ownership of any of these projects.



Agree to avoid lawyers, judge as long as possible.

But how product description can be the same letter by letter by accident? I would not try to negotiate to him, wasted time, only Geeknet referring that he is breaking Terms an Conditions first.

BTW I'm sure he is reading this topic.
Béla
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Offline danielibarnes

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Re: Sourceforge is promoting fraud!
« Reply #10 on: March 23, 2011, 11:26:40 PM »
Quote
But how product description can be the same letter by letter by accident?

I don't know why either, but the user is knowledgeable about Linux from what I gathered in my research. It doesn't make sense that someone would blatantly claim ownership of these projects. That's why I suggested simply asking him. I would do so myself, but I have no standing and it would be disrespectful of Robert's ownership of Tiny Core.

Offline vinnie

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Re: Sourceforge is promoting fraud!
« Reply #11 on: March 23, 2011, 11:34:04 PM »
i proceeded to Report inappropriate content to sourceforge

Online Rich

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Re: Sourceforge is promoting fraud!
« Reply #12 on: March 23, 2011, 11:35:24 PM »
I normally try to give people the benefit of the doubt, however, in this case I find that very difficult
considering this cut and paste from the overview page.

                     Tiny Core Linux by grimaldo

[EDIT]: In my opinion this is a claim of authorship.
« Last Edit: March 24, 2011, 12:52:25 AM by Rich »

Offline bmarkus

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Re: Sourceforge is promoting fraud!
« Reply #13 on: March 24, 2011, 12:14:03 AM »
That's why I suggested simply asking him. I would do so myself, but I have no standing and it would be disrespectful of Robert's ownership of Tiny Core.

You are right, it's Roberts task officially to submit a claim.

However, SourceForge is about open source and community. Therefore nothing wrong if community members reporting they see a fraud. More report can be more efficient, support and validate an offricial claim of author.
Béla
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Frank

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Re: Sourceforge is promoting fraud!
« Reply #14 on: March 24, 2011, 12:41:11 AM »
Quote
This individual Dave Bukov, aka grimaldo, pretending to be the developer of Tiny Core Linux.

Where, exactly, does he claim to be the developer of Tiny Core Linux? I don't find such a claim.

Quote
And, yes, of course, asking donations

Which is perfectly in line with the GPL.