A copyright infringement and breach of contract lawsuit has been filed against sports brand Nike by a software company, Quest Software. Nike reportedly signed a licensing agreement with quest about 15 years ago.
In the complaint filed on April 24 at the U.S. District Court for the District of Oregon, Portland Division, Quest states that its software consists of copyright-protected subject matter and that third parties have created pirated licence keys which can be illegally downloaded to “those who might seek to avoid paying the proper licence fees” from sites such as BitTorrent. Inputting the pirated key creates a file path which evidences the use of the unauthorized access.
Quest alleges that Nike acquired a fixed number of licences for specific versions of Quest products in 2001, as a result of the licensing agreement between the companies. As part of the agreement, Quest retained the right to review Nike’s use of the software.
Quest further claims that it audited Nike’s software in January 2017 and the audit revealed that Nike deployed the products “far in excess of the scope allowed” by the agreement. According to the complaint, the audit showed that Nike used pirated keys to bypass the system and make unauthorized copies of Quest’s software, the complaint said, and Nike refused to purchase the additional licences necessary to render its activities complaint with the licence agreement.
Quest is seeking a trial in relation to Nike’s alleged breach of contract, willful copyright infringement, as well as injunctive relief, damages, and attorneys’ fees.
The case is currently pending.