Yoga Lawsuit Taps Open-Source Spirit
Utilizing the tenets of the open-source software movement, a group of yoga instructors called "Open Source Yoga Unity" challenges the proprietary claims of yoga rock star Bikram Choudhury.Its hard to imagine that yoga, the 5,000-year-old discipline of exercise, diet and meditation, would have anything in common with the modern software industry. But a group of loosely affiliated yoga instructors based in California have embraced the philosophy of the open-source software movement in fighting a campaign by a richly successful yoga master to use copyright law to bar competitors from practicing any part of his exercise routines without authorization. India-born Bikram Choudhury has gained rock-star status in the clannish world of yoga, which has long been taught by independent local practitioners who train relatively small groups of dedicated yoga aficionados in towns and cities across the country.
But the yoga community has also grown steadily in the United States, where as many as 16.5 million fitness-conscious people practice the discipline, according to Yoga Journal.