[linux-elitists] GPL Violations [was Re: Mobile Phone Choices]
Wed Jul 26 17:56:26 PDT 2006
Quoting Shlomi Fish (firstname.lastname@example.org):
> There's a certain BSD developer I know, who is a mega-troll and tends to be
> an "idiot" in a sense (despite being very intelligent), but I am sometimes
> reaching some interesting insights from him[Fool]. In any case, he claims
> that sites like gpl-violations.org are the "anti-thesis of hacking"....
"Hey, I disapprove of the way you enforce your property rights. You
should adjust your priorities to match my preferences. Trust me."
> However, one of the reasons that I've been using the Public Domain for
> my work....
People who believe they're placing their work in the public domain are
generally mistaken, and sadly ignorant of the fundamentals of copyright
law. (Your legal jurisdiction might have a specific provision to the
contrary. Mine doesn't -- and this raises the additional risk that your
property might be treated very differently _within_ various jurisdictions.)
> ...is because of the least-worrying principle....
Explain to, please, me how you as copyright owner foregoing the benefit
of a warranty disclaimer (via a public domain declaration) could qualify
as "least worrying".
> ...am using the MIT X11 licence now....
By contrast, _this_ meets your stated criteria.
[Your licence statement:]
> Relax, this is not GPL software, but rather it is distributed under the
> public domain.
Congratulations: You've created a potential legal quagmire for
recipients. Pray that the code instances in question don't ever become
> One thing the FSF got right and the gpl-violations.org got wrong is that
> dealing with GPL violations should be done discretely....
As others have noted, you don't seem to be familiar with Harold Welte's
way of doing things.
> A company values its good reputation a lot, and even if it violated the GPL,
> we should not deprive it of it.
"Hey, I disapprove of the way you enforce your property rights, because the
people who're abusing your property are nice, and you're being mean to them."
> One can philosophise whether the GPL helps this or not, due to the fact it
> discourages proprietary code....
Not necessarily. Your homework assignment: Outline a business model
that uses a GPLed codebase as a way to build a proprietary software
product. It's not a very difficult problem, Shlomi. ;->
> I probably dropped a really large bomb here.
Nope, the t-shirts we all got during thrashing out those topics a decade
or two ago are all worn out, leaving only a fuzzy glow of nostalgia
for the long-ago murdered hours and electrons. But, since you asked:
you didn't _think_ very much before posting.
> [GPL Complexity] - See the GPL FAQ:
GPLv2's text itself is a much more reliable guide, as I believe I've
pointed out before in this space -- during discussion of the FAQ's
misleading and inaccurate wording regarding clause 3b.
IANAL. TINLA. YADA. HAND[Y].
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