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Re: <nettime> Linux strikes back III
Wayne Myers on Wed, 15 Oct 2003 17:47:36 +0200 (CEST)

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Re: <nettime> Linux strikes back III

> In the light of the SCO stuff some may find this report of use ...

Why? Haven't seen such nonsense and FUD in a while.

> But the spread of Linux could be hurt by another group--and ironically,
> it's the free-software proponents themselves.

[GPL FUD snipped]

> Under the license, if you distribute GPL software in a product, you must
> also distribute the software's source code. And not just the GPL code, but
> also the code for any "derivative works" you've created--even if
> publishing that code means anyone can now make a knockoff of your product.

[More GPL FUD snipped]

Or debug it. Or improve it. Or port it to a new system. Or use it.

The GPL is very clear. It allows many individuals and companies to use
software that they otherwise would not be able to use. A few companies
have tried to take advantage of the GPL, for commercial gain, in a way
that violates the license. There is nothing 'dark' or 'sinister' about
the FSF organising to catch and squash such abuses.

There is, though, something 'dark' or 'sinister' about reading a
characterisation of the FSF's efforts to enforce compliance to its
license as 'dark'. Why shouldn't the FSF enforce its license? The GPL
wouldn't much use to anyone if it was never enforced.

The only use this report could possibly be is along the lines of 'here
is an example of the complete tosh people who are scared of the GPL will

If I am mistaken, and there was indeed a coherent reason why the
enforcement of the GPL will 'hurt the spread of Linux' (your non
sequitometer should be binging loudly about now) embedded in the
report, please do correct me and point the reason out. Otherwise, the
only possible purpose of the article was to hurt the spread of Linux
*itself*. In which case, why bother with it?



Wayne Myers

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