Santorum website use of Fedra lawsuit

Stephen Rapp's picture

Just saw this. Seems like a pretty big infringement for a very high profile client.
http://blog.extensis.com/font-compliance/rick-santorums-website-using-pi...

Richard Fink's picture

Seems like a much better case for sticking with free fonts and avoiding commercial fonts altogether. Why pay Typotheque's prices when you can get more and more good looking, well crafted fonts for free or nearly free?

Also, as the complaint makes clear, those who merely visited the Santorum site while the fonts were being used (allegedly) are being characterized as infringers and the defendant in the case is being asked to provide IP addresses and other identifying information.

And so, down the same path that has been trod fruitlessly by the music and movie industries Typotheque walks. But for Typotheque there's only one problem: they are not part of a giant oligopoly.
Now Typotheque is on the "don't buy" blacklist and there sure are plenty of other places to go for fonts. Nice job!

(Santorum's site is currently using Typekit - BTW)

Until the complaint is amended, and Typotheque's position is made clear, my recommendation is that nobody buy fonts from Typotheque or use their service, either. (Sorry, Peter.)
The suit is a slap in the face of every web developer and every web user everywhere. According to the suit, if I had visited Santorum's site during the period those fonts were included in the @font-face rules, I'm an infringer because my browser cached them.
Screw 'em and the lawyer they rode in on.

Frank Martinez, BTW, is the lawyer they rode in on. And, as one would infer from the information posted on Martinez' own website, I beg to differ with Stephen - this suit seems more like a bottom-feeding IP lawyer trying to use the legal costs of defending against a complaint to extract a quick settlement. As was done, successfully I've heard - but I don't know the settlement amount - by Martinez when he represented the Font Bureau against NBC.
The real pirates are the ones who know how to craftily use the legal system to their benefit. Downloaders are pikers but add up the sheer number of them and you get Spotify.
Monitoring and targeting deep pocket defendants goes on in the copyright industry all the time.

As for Extensis' blog post:

Extensis' product won't protect you from mistakes that lie outside it's reach. Or a misunderstanding of the license terms. I was kind of waiting for them to pick up on this and use it as marketing fodder - and I'm glad they did. Now I hope one of their licensees gets sued and Extensis gets sued for promising to protect their licensees from this sort of thing. After discussing the Santorum situation for three paragraphs or so it seques into this:
"Universal Type Server can help you gain control of the fonts used in your workgroup. Through robust tracking and reporting you can ensure that you’ve purchased enough licenses for your workgroup, and keep unlicensed fonts from entering your workflow."

This is spin verging on a lie.
What's described offers absolutely no protection against the kind of suit under discussion. Did Kidwell even read the complaint before writing it? (Sorry Jim, but did you bother to read the complaint so you'd know what you were writing about?)

You can all read (and download) the actual complaint filed in the United States District Court and decide for yourselves:
Typotheque VOF v RaiseDigital

Claire Bibio's picture

this is madness, SPARTA!!!!!!!!

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