Adobe Warns of Lawsuits for Using Older CC Apps

Software developer Adobe announced that versions prior to the latest two major updates of their popular subscription apps – such as Photoshop, Lightroom, and more – would no longer be available for download through Creative Cloud. But with this news comes an unusual warning of potential lawsuits, if a user continues to use older “unauthorized” versions.

Adobe didn’t publicly issue the warning of potential legal issues of using old versions of their apps; instead they sent it directly to certain customers. One customer shared their copy with PetaPixel, as seen below:

In the letter, Adobe requests that customers update to the latest version of Creative Cloud, as they are “no longer licensed to use certain older versions of the applications or deploy packages containing these older versions”. If the user or organisation does not follow this advice, then you will be open to potential legal action from third-party companies – not from Adobe themselves.

This is because certain CC apps contain copyrighted software and features created by third-party companies. These features exist within an agreed upon term, and using them outside of this term through older versions of Adobe apps could constitute as copyright infringement.

“Please be aware that if you continue to use or deploy the older, unauthorized versions of Creative Cloud, you will not have third-party claim coverage pursuant to your contract with Adobe,” Adobe states. “Should you continue to use or deploy these unauthorized versions, you may be at risk of potential claims of infringement by third parties.”

Speculation by Apple Insider suggests that Dolby could be one third-party company possessing the power to sue. Last year they sued Adobe for copyright infringement – which may have spurred on this warning to CC customers.

This is the first time that Adobe has acknowledged that restricting customers to the two most recent versions could impact their legal position. Previously, the company has justified the restriction on the basis of focusing on improving the apps from a user perspective.

Petapixel contacted Adobe, in which they responded with this official statement:

Adobe recently discontinued certain older versions of Creative Cloud applications. Customers using those versions have been notified that they are no longer licensed to use them and were provided guidance on how to upgrade to the latest authorized versions. Unfortunately, customers who continue to use or deploy older, unauthorized versions of Creative Cloud may face potential claims of infringement by third parties.

Although it is unlikely that companies such as Dolby will chase down individual creatives each time they boot an old version of Photoshop, the best bet is to update your apps as soon as possible.

Alternatively, investigate other photo editing options – such as Luminar 3. Read our review here.

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Ed Carr is a Yorkshire-born landscape photographer and nature writer. Having spent his youth in the North Yorkshire Moors National Park, he takes any opportunity to don his hiking boots and head out, camera in hand. When not out taking pictures or hastily scribbling down his thoughts, Ed’s halfway up a hill out chasing after his dog, Hendrix.

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