Fwd: Re: Fwd: [linux-elitists] Wow, M$ is even more evil than I thought

Aaron Lehmann aaronl@vitelus.com
Mon Apr 2 13:19:41 PDT 2001


----- Forwarded message from Bryan-TheBS-Smith <thebs@theseus.com> -----

From: Bryan-TheBS-Smith <thebs@theseus.com>
Date: Mon, 02 Apr 2001 16:18:50 -0400
To: Aaron Lehmann <aaronl@vitelus.com>, dmarti@zgp.org
CC: elug-eluglist@elug.org, leaplist@lists.leap-cf.org
Subject: Re: Fwd: [linux-elitists] Wow, M$ is even more evil than I thought
X-Mailer: Mozilla 4.76 [en] (X11; U; Linux 2.2.17-0.17-FUGITIVE i686)

Aaron Lehmann wrote:
> ----- Forwarded message from Don Marti <dmarti@zgp.org> -----
> <ianal>This is bullshit. The classic free software licenses cannot be
> revoked by the copyright holder. If they were, all free software would
> be no freer than q...l, and there would be no OpenSSH in its present
> form. (I know OpenSSH is under the BSD license, but same principle.)
> The Cyber Patrol case was an example of blatant legal harassment -- Cyber
> Patrol had no case, and neither the original author nor the asignee had
> any power to take back anything granted under GPL.</ianal>
> ----- End forwarded message -----

[ Please forward to the appropriate list ]

All I know is that every "case study/discussion" I've seen on GPL
says that the GPL can ultimately be circumvented since all rights
are reserved to the copyright holder under Copyright Law.  The
copyright holder has the right to release his/her own GPL code as
another license -- otherwise, "dual licenses" couldn't exist.  In
such case, the copyright holder can license or even re-assign that
copyright, including all rights, to whomever he/she desires -- and
that _includes_revoking_ and past or current licenses!

It is because of this, the FSF recommends that all
maintainers/participants of GNU/GPL projects sign over all copyright
reservations to them.

Now in the case of Microsoft Passport.COM, no, they could not
"revoke" the GPL version -- and I was NOT making that case.  Why? 
Because they are not the sole copyright holder.  *BUT* as a
copyright holder, they can redistribute, re-license and/or do
anything else with it as they see fit.  *THAT* was the point I was
making -- that GPL projects are *NOT* immune if their copyright
holder uploads via any program/service that is tied to the
Passport.COM agreement.

As far as the Cyber Patrol case, it in an out-of-court settlement
where the GPL project orginators signing over all copyrights to
Cyber Patrol, and yanked the program off their site.  Now it may be
impossible to track down all the copies, but it would be an
interesting case to argue that the GPL license, no longer licensed
as GPL by all copyright holders (which is now solely Cyber Patrol),
gives any arbitrary party the right to the software.

-- TheBS

--
Bryan "TheBS" Smith          chat:thebs413 @AOL/MSN/Yahoo
Engineer      mailto:b.j.smith@ieee.org,thebs@theseus.com
*********************************************************
"Never apply a Star Trek solution to a Babylon 5 problem"
                                    -- Nicholas C. Weaver


----- End forwarded message -----



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