First, we’ll suggest this is a bad idea for both ethical and pragmatic reasons. Misusing an organizations’ intellectual property is unethical behavior and not the sort of business practice any company or organization should participate in. Further, the consortia-based standards and industry specification development system is based on mutual respect and trust. If parties frustrated by the consensus-based development process can simply “fork” established work and fragment a standards-setting process, the consortia model will break: no participants will commit resources to a process that can easily splinter into incompatible solutions. There are good, practical reasons for the well-established industry norm that consortia respect the intellectual property of other consortia.  

Second, if these ethical and pragmatic considerations are not persuasive, we will also point out the substantial legal risks faced by a party making an unauthorized use of a MIPI specification. As discussed in a previous question, such uses are likely to result in implementations that do not benefit from MIPI’s royalty-free patent license structure, and instead implementers could face unconstrained patent royalty demands or injunctions. Further, organizations and implementers using MIPI specifications in an unauthorized manner could face claims of trade secret misappropriation, copyright infringement, trademark infringement, breach of contract, and more. MIPI Alliance will be highly incentivized to protect its intellectual property interests, as failure to do so could harm the interests of our members and undermine our non-profit mission.

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