Lawsuit aims to stop activist’s attempt to make building codes free of cost

Open government activist Carl Malamud has been posting building codes on his Web site Public.Resource.org in an attempt to make codes developed by professional associations and trade groups available for free to the public.

August 30, 2013

Open government activist Carl Malamud has been posting building codes on his Web site Public.Resource.org in an attempt to make codes developed by professional associations and trade groups available for free to the public. Malamud argues that theses codes, because they have been enacted into law, should be free. In response, three of the country’s biggest standards development organizations — ASTM International, ASHRAE, and the National Fire Protection Association — sued Public.Resource.org in U.S. District Court for copyright infringement. The case could have far-reaching implications for the viability of institutions that write the rules, as well as the rights the public has to read them.

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