The statement in short reads as follows:
The issue with the site in question was NOT that it provided custom ROMs or RUUs. The site used HTC trademarks without a license from HTC. The domain name contained ‘HTC’ and it used HTC logos, making it appear to be an official HTC website. Like any other company, we must protect our trademarks and brand. We cannot risk being associated with, and held liable for, software that we don’t have any control over that’s put onto an HTC device through a third party.
The walk back from HTC does go on to state that they have always accepted the hacking/ROM community by creating their unlock bootloader tool found at htcdev.com. The post does not indicate that they are aggressively seeking to close down any repository of Sense ROMs, just the ones that use their branding without proper permission.
The last bit of confusion seems to concern why HTC asked James Taylor, the owner of HTCRUU.com to remove the Sense ROMs as well. It is understandable in large part for a company to protect intellectual property, but for them to demand the ROMs be removed from existence has caused some further consternation. The statement from HTC seems to be more of a band-aid on a larger wound, but for the most part, they are maintaining their rights as owners of the HTC brand to protect intellectual property.
What I don't think the HTC lawyers are understanding is that Sense ROM creators are not out to skew the brand, they just want to run the UI on a multitude of devices. For what reason, I will never fully understand, but HTC will have to really show they are not out to crush segments of the Android population by handling future similar situations with an open hand and not with a legal fist.
Any thoughts on the HTC post? Have they clarified their position about what they maintain to be a misunderstanding, or have they made a final sweeping move turning off the last segment of their enthusiast community? Do you think they really embrace the Android community with open arms? Please share your thoughts in the comments.