AVM on the Cybits Case

In 2009 AVM discovered that the Surf-Sitter DSL software by the company Cybits AG was intervening significantly with the function of the FRITZ!Box. Without informing users, use of this software resulted in such efffects as the removal of existing DSL and Internet connections, the firewall and the child protection function of the FRITZ!Box. Functions that were fully operational before installation of the Surf-Sitter software, like IPTV and VPN, were suddenly no longer available.

For many people a DSL router like the FRITZ!Box has become an everyday utensil. Especially in the interest of FRITZ!Box users, AVM could not accept this course of action. Thus in 2010, the Berlin Regional Court and Appellate Court ruled in infringement proceedings on the basis of competition law that Cybits AG could no longer distribute its Surf-Sitter DSL software in its current form for use with the FRITZ!Box. The appellate court referred in its ruling to the concrete malfunctions in the configuration interface of the FRITZ!Box, in which it recognized a defamatory devaluation of the FRITZ!Box product.

AVM welcomes these rulings, for they protect the users from using a software that results in significant malfunctions. In court aspects of competition law, trademark law and copyright law were taken into account. Because Cybits did not accept these rulings, principal proceedings will be commencing to decide on the merits of the case.

In the framework of these proceedings a few days ago a third party attempted to accuse AVM of what a so-called GPL violation. AVM complies with the licensing conditions as a matter of course, and source texts are published as stipulated in the GNU-GPL.

AVM has been active in the open source area for many years, is an active participant in its further development and enjoys the commitment of a great community. AVM will continue its work in the open source area unabated and without modification and, just as it always has, offer unreserved support to all serious developments in the open source community.