Innosuing, not innovating

image Endnote, owned by Thomson Reuters Reuters, is suing the main creator of Zotero, Dan Cohen (Or, rather, they are suing GMU, his university.) The reason is that Zotero includes a tool that can convert Endnote styles to Zotero (much like Openoffice has functionality for converting from MS-Word or other formats).

Now, there is a brilliant market move. Endnote is primarily used by academics. I have used it since around 1991, and for a couple of years I was a beta tester (and had the T-shirt to prove it.) Aside from the T-shirt, I got zilch for my efforts (and I did find a bug or two.) Neither did the thousands of academics who have created bibliography styles for various journals and uploaded them to Endnote’s web site.

I can’t think of a better way than a law suit to make people move to Zotero. This definitely does it for me – unless Thomson Reuters pulls this stupid suit. Come to think of it, we have a number of users at the Norwegian School of Management, I am sure I can persuade quite a few of them to switch sides…..

Suing an academic for creating software for other academics which draws on work of other academics when your primary market is academics? Have they hired hired lawyers from the music industry?

Zotero is a better tool, too. Shared lists, bibliographies, support for clipping from searches, including Google Scholar. Instant saves from browsing.

Time to move, methinks. Let me see, how hard would it be to migrate my 2100+ article database….

Update two hours later: Boingboing is on the case.

Update 10 hours later: Check out the Boingboing commentsStreisand effect in the making. John Mark Ockerbloom has a thoughtful piece on the suit.

2 thoughts on “Innosuing, not innovating

  1. Boing Boing

    Reuters sues academic for making a Firefox plugin that lets you annotate and reference articles

    Espen sez, “In a move leading me to suspect they have hired laid-off lawyers from RIAA, Endnote (owned by Reuters) has sued GMU and Dan Cohen for the latest version of Zotero (a Firefox plugin that lets you save, annotate and academically reference art…

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