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   Re: Joint ownership of the data-dataContainer combination

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On Sun, 2003-04-20 at 04:14, AndrewWatt2000@aol.com wrote:

> Over to those who care to attempt to disprove my, fairly informal, thesis 
> that Microsoft has joint ownership of a Microsoft Word file, as a consequence 
> of their ownership of the file format which forms part of such a file.


James Anderson and Amy Lewis have thoroughly demolished your claim of
joint ownership. Amy and I concede the claim of joint control. I think
we can fairly infer her position on the de facto situation from her use
of the term 'held hostage.'

Will you accept that control != ownership? I can even understand how you
might feel the word appropriate, but there are lawyers prowling, and to
them words are magic spells, and if you say the wrong one or
mispronounce the right one they're all over you.

I still await any defense of your claim that using proprietary data
formats can be a benefit. I accept that (think it's trivially obvious
that) ease of use and low cost may justify using a program that uses a
proprietary data format. I'm waiting for you to produce the case this
program would be worse not better if it were changed to store its data
in xml with a documented DTD/schema. Note also that I've mentioned the
case of ephemeral data, where the user doesn't care to ever see it again
and the format is thus irrelevant. In that case proprietary data rises
to the level of cost-free. That is still a big step below 'benefit.'



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