from the what's-with-the-saber-rattling-then dept.
San Muel writes "In an official statement, Microsoft has said it has no immediate plans to sue after alleging patent infringements by open-source vendors for the time being. The company goes on to say that, essentially, it could have done that any time in the last three years if it wanted to. So what's the purpose of these bold announcements? '[John McCreesh, OpenOffice.org marketing project lead] added that while Microsoft may not have plans to sue, it could be using the threat of litigation to try to encourage corporate customers to move to those open-source product vendors with whom it had signed licensing agreements, such as Novell. "Microsoft has spent time and money accumulating patents. Maybe it has started using that armory to move corporate customers to open-source software that Microsoft approves of."'"
Boom writes: For actor Paul Newman, a state law is needed to protect people's images and words from being used without their permission in commercials or derogatory ways.
For film and media companies, the law would conflict with their First Amendment rights and open up the entertainment industry to a slew of lawsuits.
azuredrake writes: ""Perhaps we do the minors of this country harm if First Amendment protections, which they will with age inherit fully, are chipped away in the name of their protection," writes Senior U.S. District Judge Lowell Reed Jr. in a case striking down a 1998 internet porn law. He goes on to say that there are easier ways for parents to protect their children, such as cheap and omnipresent parental access control software, than chipping away at fundamental rights. The whole story is available from the AP at http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070322/ap_on_hi_te/in ternet_blocking (Sorry for the proprietary link, but I couldn't find it on the AP's own site.)"