Gwyn Firth Murray, dba Matau Legal, specializes in technology licensing and commercial transactions, both domestically and overseas, open source/free software licensing, and outside general counsel services.
Matau Legal has structured and negotiated numerous technology licenses (inbound and outbound), joint development agreements, distribution and customer contracts, consulting and professional services agreements, and strategic partnerships. Gwyn’s approach is to work closely with clients to understand their specific business goals, both short-term and long-term, and to negotiate in a cooperative manner while carefully protecting their rights and interests. The best outcomes occur when each party clearly understands the other party’s business model and goals, and when we work together to achieve a “win-win” for all concerned.
That said, “if you don’t ask, you don’t get.” So, no matter how small the client and how big the other side is, she encourages clients to ask for and pursue what they need. By understanding the bottom line, we are in a much stronger position to negotiate and come up with creative ways to get the deal done. While licensing agreements often contain boilerplate legalese, there are many ways to be creative, structuring an agreement that balances the needs and goals of both parties.
Free (libre) and open-source software (OSS) is software for which the source code is made freely available to be used, copied, modified, and distributed. OSS is offered without requirements for royalty payments. Nonetheless, OSS can be used, and often is used and distributed, for commercial gain depending on the wishes of (or permissions granted by) its licensors. Using OSS can be extremely cost-effective, however, is also has significant risks and downsides.
Gwyn has been working with OSS since the late 1990’s, making her an “early adopter” of OSS in the legal community. She has broad experience providing advice on the use of OSS in commercial products, advising non-profit OSS projects about their licensing practices, conducting OSS license compliance reviews, developing OSS compliance policies and practices, and assisting with remediation plans where there is a risk of non-compliance.
General Counsel Services
Matau Legal was founded with a goal of providing high-quality, cost-effective legal services to smaller companies that could not, or should not, hire in-house counsel. Gwyn and other lawyers that do work for Matau Legal have served as in-house General Counsels for a variety of companies. As such, we are familiar with the broad range of issues that come across a General Counsel’s desk: from employment to real estate, corporate securities to licensing, export to tax, etc.
Expert Witness and Litigation
Matau Legal provides expert witness and litigation support services in the area of free and open-source software licensing (FOSS, FLOSS, OSS licensing). Recent high-profile cases in which Gwyn Murray has participated include Oracle America, Inc. v. Google, Inc.; The Regents of the University of California vs. Paul S. Aisen, University of Southern California, et al; and Google LLC, Alphabet Inc. v European Commission.
Privacy and Data Security
Matau Legal has a rapidly-expanding practice in the area of privacy and data security matters. More coming soon.