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Update : Following our request, Cinema On Web has removed the download from their web site. We would like to thank them for their quick response.

The VideoLAN project investigates possible violation of their intellectual property

VLC media player (VLC) is an open-source cross-platform media player and streaming solution.

Following announcement by Cinema On the Web (COW) and DivXNetworks of the new COW video on demand service, the VideoLAN project team members were informed of a possible violation of VLC media player's license. The VideoLAN project, which owns copyrights to VLC, distributes VLC as free software exclusively under the terms of the GNU General Public License (GNU GPL).

The Microsoft installer (MSI) file which can be downloaded off the http://www.cinemaonweb.com/ww1/index.php?ab=cow-sw web page appears to contain several binary VLC and Xvid files covered by the GNU GPL. The End-User License Agreement (EULA), which the user accepts when installing, states that:

« [...] Cinema on Web. (the "Licensor") grants to you this personal, limited, non-exclusive, non-transferable, non-assignable license solely to use in a single copy of the Licensed Works on a single computer for use by a single concurrent user only, and solely provided that you adhere to all of the terms and conditions of this Agreement. [...] »

The VideoLAN project is a strong supporter of open source and free software. It is our belief that the licensing terms above are incompatible with several provisions of the GNU GPL. If that is the case, we are afraid COW might be infringing our protected intellectual property and denying our users' rights.

The VideoLAN project will do everything it can to ensure that its rights and our users' rights are not denied.

Xvid.org has been notified of a possible violation of their own Xvid software's GNU GPL license.

Antoine Cellerier,
Public Relations, the VideoLAN project, VIA Centrale Réseaux
videolanremovethis@videolan.org

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