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10.29.11

Microsoft Skype Fights Benevolent API Hacking

Posted in GNU/Linux, Microsoft at 7:28 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

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Summary: The Microsoft-owned Skype is cracking down on access to the application’s network from ‘non-approved’ code

Skype is a subject that we covered here many times before, especially since Microsoft bought it under suspicious circumstances and then ruined it.

According to unconfirmed reports (not confirmed that Skype was indeed behind the letters/nastygram), it seems safe to allege that “Skype Goes After Reverse-Engineering” (not that it can bury code when a dark Web exists). To quote Phoronix:

Skype Goes After Reverse-Engineering

[...]

The day of publishing his initial details, Google’s Blogger (where his blog is hosted) received a DMCA (Digital Millenium Copyright Act) notice that two of his blog entries had to be removed: the post about his success in reverse-engineering the Skype protocol and then a second post about more technical details.

The complainant issuing the DMCA notice was in fact “Skype Inc” and the basis for the complaint is “Source code. The publication of this code, in addition to infringing Skype’s intellectual property rights, may encourage improper spamming activities.” (Google publishes DMCA complaints to ChillingEffects.org.)

Skype issued a second DMCA copyright notice after this researcher published more Skype related code. Those files have since moved to being hosted elsewhere. Skype is claiming copyright on the code even though the open-source code was written by the researcher. Another DMCA takedown attempt regarding the same work was issued again in early August when the researcher tried doing a DMCA counter-notice, and he ended up putting up links again to this “copyrighted” work.

This comes amid another report (from the same site) that “Skype Publishes New Linux APIs w/ Video Support”. Microsoft must be afraid that with Google+ and other such services growing, Skype will become obsolete within a few years. The Facebook integration move plays a role in this. Facebook is partly owned by Microsoft.

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