From: "Joseph Lorenzo Hall" <joehall () gmail com>
Date: September 28, 2008 9:55:24 AM EDT
To: "Dave Farber" <dave () farber net>
Subject: Reuters Suing Zotero
Zotero is a FireFox-based reference/citation manager that many grad
students would evaporate without...
Reuters Says George Mason University Is Handing Out Its Proprietary
RICHMOND, VA. (CN) - Thomson Reuters demands $10 million and an
injunction to stop George Mason University from distributing its new
Web browser application, Zotero software, an open-source format that
allows users to convert Reuters' EndNote Software. Reuters claims
George Mason is violating its license agreement and destroying the
EndNote customer base.
Thomson Reuters also sued the Commonwealth of Virginia, in
Richmond City Court. George Mason, founded in 1972, is a state
Reuters says its EndNote Software "allows end users to search
online bibliographic databases, organize their references, images, and
.pdfs in any language, and instantly create bibliographic reference
style files and figure lists in Thomson's proprietary .ens style
format for over 3,500 journals and publications."
The complaint states, "Dr. Daniel J. Cohen, Associate Professor,
Department of History and Art History, and the director of GMU's
Center for History and New media, developed Zotero, which is a freely
distributable, open-source software based research tool that allows
users to gather, organize and analyze sources, including citations,
and freely share the results with others."
The Center for History and New Media release "a new beta version
of Zotero to the general public" on July 8. Reuters adds, "A
significant and highly touted feature of the new beta version of
Zotero, however, is its ability to convert - in direct violation of
the License Agreement - Thomson's 3,500 plus proprietary .ens style
files within the EndNote Software into free, open source, easily
distributable Zotero .csl files."
It claims GMU reverse engineered Reuters' EndNote software to
Reuters is represented by Gary Noyes of Tysons Corner.
Joseph Lorenzo Hall
Postdoctoral Research Fellow
UC Berkeley School of Information
Princeton University Center for Information Technology Policy