The Court of Appeal Grants Druide’s Motion

January 08, 2018

Just before the holidays, the Court of Appeal of Quebec granted Druide informatique leave to appeal the Superior Court’s ruling regarding the application for injunction and damages sought by Québec Amérique (“QA”). In addition to granting Druide’s motion, the Court ordered a stay of execution of the monetary judgment rendered at the initial trial and noted that this was a matter of a legitimate business relationship turned sour rather than a case of intellectual property theft.

The Court of Appeal, presided over by Justice Mark Schrager, specifies that this is “not a case of software piracy or theft of intellectual property” but a “case of a relationship that was never reflected in a formal agreement and unfortunately deteriorated.” Justice Schrager asserted that Druide’s appeal raises questions that are “significant and merit adjudication by the Court of Appeal.”

To recap, QA’s motion sought to compel Druide to remove the contents of the Dictionnaire Visuel (Visual Dictionary, herein referred to as the “Works”) from editions HD, 8 and 9 of Antidote. Superior Court judge Élise Poisson rejected QA’s claim that no agreement had ever been reached between both parties, stating that, on the contrary, QA had clearly consented to the use of the Works in Antidote HD. She added, however, that this consent did not extend to Antidote 8 and 9, thus committing a decisive mistake according to Druide’s lawyers. The Court of Appeal has agreed to review this matter.

Other, often factual, errors were brought forward to the Court of Appeal. For example, Justice Poisson accused Druide of using the Works in the English module of Antidote 9’s bilingual version. However, as per the agreement with QA, they only feature in the French module.

Druide informatique produces and markets Antidote, the most comprehensive writing assistance software suite available for English and French, as well as Typing Pal, the renowned typing tutorial application. The company is also the creator of WebElixir, a quality assurance service for websites, while its subsidiary, Éditions Druide, specializes in the publication of French-language literature and reference works.