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Legal Software Warranty

What legal guarantees do we provide?

With each purchased license the buyer obtains a legal document that obliges us to ensure the lifetime legal guarantee of the origin and legality of the software. In case of any problem, we take the full legal responsibility for the sold license(s). We work with stable and verified suppliers only and our company cooperates with other organizations in a common goal of detecting fraudulent license sellers and reporting them to law enforcing structures. 

New versus secondary software

We offer secondary software as well as brand new licenses. The main difference between the two is that ‘secondary’ (sometimes referred to as ‘used’, or ‘second-hand’) software products can be sold at significantly lower prices in comparison with their original cost. Find out more about secondary software below.

What is secondary software and how does it work?

Secondary software stands for licenses that aren’t needed by its owners anymore. The owners are usually companies that want to buy a newer program edition or switch to a different software altogether. That means their ‘used’ licenses become redundant. We repurchase these licenses and then offer them in our e-shop to other customers. What’s great about it is, that you can save about half the price (and sometimes even more) in comparison with the original one while getting exactly the same product as the first user!

Our view on reselling secondary software

From our point of view, reselling redundant licenses enables people to buy legal software for much more affordable prices than they normally could. What’s more, the license that becomes virtually useless to the first buyer, can still serve someone else. The process works similarly as when you buy a book, read it, and then want to sell it to someone else.The original seller has no right to influence what happens to the already sold book in the future. With software, it’s just the same - once it’s uninstalled from the original owner’s PC, it can be freely sold to someone else.

What does the media say about secondary software?

"What this means is that, under EU law, software companies have no right to prevent users from selling their digital downloads to others; effectively, the software distributor's rights to control distribution are exhausted after the first sale.

So if you download a piece of software, you can effectively re-sell it – as long as you delete the copy on your own hard drive."

Read the whole article here

"Europe's highest court ruled that the trading of "used" software licenses is legal and that the author of such software cannot oppose any resale. This ruling sets a precedent for trading of used software licenses throughout the European Union."

Read the whole article here

"EU court: Sale of used software licenses is just fine.

The European Court of Justice says that the rule applies to copies of software both on physical media and downloaded from the Internet. The court also said that once a software company sells "a copy of a computer program," its "exclusive right of distribution" is eliminated, paving the way for other companies to sell the used licenses."

Read the whole article here

What does the law say about reselling secondary licenses?

One of the most important judgments concerning the sale of used licenses was rendered by the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) in 2012.

The CJEU judgment in Case C-128/11 UsedSoft GmbH v Oracle International Corp. says that An author of software cannot oppose the resale of his ‘used’ licenses allowing the use of his programs downloaded from the internet. The exclusive right of distribution of a copy of a computer program covered by such a license is exhausted on its first sale.

This means that the sale of ‘used’ and redundant software licenses is legal. This judgement created a safe, legal framework for the whole European Union ensuring a fair and healthy competition on the European market.

The judgment also states that:

  • The unlimited software licenses can be traded freely. If you purchase an independent software license, you can sell it under the same conditions.
  • The distribution rights of the producer are exhausted upon the first sale of the software. Customers who bought a computer program on a free market are entitled to use the purchased software.
  • Even if the resale of software is specifically forbidden by the license agreement, the right holder can no longer oppose the resale of that copy. The license agreement is subject to the European Law and points which are in conflict with the European Law are void (this applies mainly to the ‘OEM software’).
  • There is no difference between the manners of distribution. Software can be distributed by CD/DVD (physical licenses) or online (digital licenses). The right holder cannot demand an appropriate remuneration for further resale of the software license because the appropriate remuneration was obtained during the first sale.

Read the whole press release of the CJEU

Legal history of secondary software

Have a look at what were the major court decisions and EU directives that influenced the situation on the market with used licenses in the infographic below.

 

2000
“The judgment of the German Federal Court of Justice allowed the sale of OEM versions and DSP versions without the associated hardware.” –  Decision of the Federal Court of Justice of 6 July 2000, file no. I ZR 244/97

2001
“The first sale in the Community of the original of a work or copies thereof by the right-holder or with his consent exhausts the right to control resale of that object in the Community.” – Extract from EU directive 2001/29/EC

2006
The Regional Court of Hamburg has confirmed that trade in used Microsoft software is legitimate. This also applies to the re-sale of individual licenses from volume license agreements.

2009
"...the second acquirer of the license, as well as any subsequent acquirer of it, will be able to rely on the exhaustion of the distribution right and hence be regarded as lawful acquirers of a copy of a computer program and benefit from the right of reproduction provided for in that provision."  Directive 2009/24/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council

2011
The Swiss Cantonal Court in Zug decides that "Adobe can't prohibit the resale of the program copy in terms of copyright after its initial sale".
This precedent-setting decision is considered a big victory for the free international software trade.

2012
“An author of software cannot oppose the resale of his ‘used’ licenses allowing the use of his programs downloaded from the internet.” – Court of Justice decision, Case C-128/11 UsedSoft GmbH v Oracle International Corp.

2016
“The initial acquirer of a copy of a computer program, accompanied by an unlimited user license, may resell that copy and his license to a new acquirer.” – Court of Justice decision, Case C-166/15 Aleksandrs Ranks and Jurijs Vasiļevičs

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