A recent decision by the U. S. Court of Appeals District of Columbia Circuit clearly demonstrates the importance of issues raised by unauthorized publishing of codes and standards. The court issued its decision in a copyright and trademark infringement case brought by three standard development organizations – NFPA, along with ASTM International and American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air Conditioning Engineers – against Public.Resource.Org, Inc.
The Appeals Court returned the case to the District Court in the District of Columbia for further fact-finding.
The Appeals Court did not adopt PRO’s argument that publishing standard development organizations’ codes and standards in whole is permitted whenever a jurisdiction anywhere incorporates a standard by reference.
Instead, the Appeals Court directed the District Court to consider additional facts before determining whether PRO’s claim of fair use would justify the unauthorized publication.
As standard development organizations, we look forward to providing additional facts for review in this case. The facts will show: