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Doe 1 v. GitHub

Software developers who own source code repositories made available on GitHub filed a proposed class action complaint against GitHub, Inc., Microsoft Corporation, and OpenAI. The plaintiffs alleged that the defendants trained Codex and Copilot on the code deriving from the plaintiffs’ published codes on GitHub, in violation of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), 17 U.S.C. §§ 1201–1205 and several other claims, most of which were dismissed in a mixed ruling in May 2023 by U.S. District Judge Jon Tigar in the Northern District of California.

Claims that were dismissed were for violation of Sections 1202(a) and 1202(b)(2) of the DMCA, tortious interference in a contractual relationship, fraud, false designation of origin, unjust enrichment, unfair competition, breach of the GitHub Privacy Policy and Terms of Service, violation of the California Consumer Privacy Act and negligence.

What survived the dismissal were plaintiffs’ claims that GitHub and OpenAI violated Sections 1202(b)(1) and 1202(b)(3) of the DMCA and breached the open source licenses under which the plaintiffs’ codes were made available through GitHub.

LAST UPDATED 10/14/2023