Friday, September 18, 2009

A legal Battle for Fon

I know this is a couple months old, but it shows how a company like Fon cant survive out there without partnerships with other companies like BT, Zon, and more. The legal battle in Germany shows how dangerous sharing your internet connection with the world really is. Any one who logs onto your fon spot is free to do whatever they want to, and you have no way of knowing who is doing it.

To make a long story short this is what happened (From the Fon Boards)

"The defendant makes the claim for unfair competition by focusing on their business model to the free sharing of DSL Internet access service, which the applicant their customers against a fee calculated differently recognizable available. Instead of using their own technical and organizational services at wholesale by a third party in order to develop the market, they use one of the applicant under different conditions created infrastructure "parasitic" to deal with its own offer on the commercial market. "

"We lost a lawsuit against a small operator who does not want its customers (to be) Foneros, but we are negotiating with them to (make them) realize that, like many other operators have realized, that Fon is a good business for them."

"FON lost the first trial on 11.11.2008 -> they did not communicate
FON lost the Second trial on 05.06.2009 -> they did not communicate
"The decision is provisionally enforceable"

FON has to pay € 200,000 due to the Security issues this causes,
25.000,00 € due to not giving a list of Foneros which are customer at 1&1 when the ISP asked for it;
due to the Second lost trial it seems these amounts are now set at 110% ...

FON (defendant) is convicted for the 2nd time, for each breach it has to pay upto 250,000 € - or imprisonment for up to six months"

Read more at:
Fon Boards - "German court decision: FON as "parasitic" WLAN sharing?"
El Fon Blog - "Foneros Panic as Major Legal Loss for Fon Surfaces"


  1. I wouldn't argue with the notion that there is stability to be had in having a number of prominent business partners. However, I don't think that Fon needs these partners in order to survive. Never forget that Fon betrayed it's members by making these one-sided agreements.

    Fon should have continued what it had begun, with a community-based, open-source project which endevoured to meet the needs of the community, and realize their ideas, instead of forcing them to contribute without mutual benefeit.

    I'd love to hear your thoughts in a future post, about Fon's attempt to partner with a femtocell manufacturer. Apparently, Fon has already cast our supporting vote for the idea, LOL.

  2. Maybe my mind is drawing a blank, but what do you mean "Fon betrayed it's members by making these one-sided agreements?"

    I had a quick post planned about the femto-fon, I might push it back a little and do some more research.