Abstraction-Filtration-Comparison Test Law and Legal Definition

Abstraction- Filtration-Comparison Test refers to a judicially created test which is used for determining whether substantial similarity exists between the non-literal elements of two or more programs. This test is mainly applied in copyright infringement cases. Under this test, usually a computer program is dissected according to its varying levels of generality. Then each level of abstraction is examined to filter out the program elements that are unprotected. Finally, remaining protected elements are compared with the allegedly infringing program to determine whether substantial elements of the plaintiff’s program have been misappropriated.