copyrightable APIs? (was RE: namespace protection compa

Forrest J Cavalier III forrest at
Fri Apr 20 19:05:12 UTC 2001

"Chloe Hoffman" <chloehoffman at> wrote

> pages.</P> <P>I think the real question is not whether an API is copyrightable
> but how an API is infringed and what is a derivative work of an
> API.

You admit that some parts of the API would not qualify as original.
Infringement would therefore depend on what portions of the API are
"original enough" to qualify under copyright law.

These APIs get published so that they can be used.  Once the
software is written that provides the API, it becomes a physical
object which can be studied.  

It is pretty hard to argue that the facts of that physical object, 
including the exported interface, can never be expressed without
infringing copyright. 


(P.S. To Chloe Hoffman: If you must use MIME, can you at least post
in text/plain?  Thanks!)

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