Re: GPLv3 Position Statement

From: Chase Venters
Date: Wed Sep 27 2006 - 19:16:39 EST

On Wed, 27 Sep 2006, Theodore Tso wrote:

On Wed, Sep 27, 2006 at 01:37:37PM -0500, Chase Venters wrote:
I think one thing that should have happened a _lot_ sooner is that you and
others should have made clear to the startled community that you object
precisely to the anti-Tivoization clause, not because of any technical
reason or interpretation but because you don't see anything wrong with
Tivo's use of Linux. It would have been nice but totally optional to
engage in dialogue with the FSF. But slandering them about their license
development process, or their intentions with regard to using Linux as
leverage, is counterproductive whether true or not.

This has been made clear to Eben and the FSF, for a long time. The
FSF has simply chosen not to listen to Linus and other members of the
kernel community. In fact, I've never seen any interest in a
dialogue, just a pseudo-dialogue where "input is solicited", and then
as near as far as I can tell, at least on the anti-Tivo issue, has
been simply ignored. But in any case, it should not have come as a
surprise and should not have startled anyone.

Perhaps I came off too strong, but I meant what I said, and I'm not only
talking about things being made clear with Eben and the FSF. Frankly, I don't know what did or did not happen behind closed doors and it would be wrong of me to make assumptions about that.

What I was really addressing here is that the whole F/OSS community exploded over the news that Linux was not adopting the GPLv3. I think it's fair to say that the reason why Linux is not adopting GPLv3 (aside from the very practical matter of gaining the consensus of copyright holders)
is that Linus and other top copyright holders don't think what Tivo is doing is wrong. But when that statement first came out, it was almost lost in the noise of "The FSF is not going to listen to us, and what about encryption keys?" The former probably has no place outside of LKML; the latter is the sort of thing you'd bring up at if you wanted to participate in the process.

So a lot of people spent a lot of time thinking Linus was just confused about the license and its intentions and that if they could just show him why he was reading it wrong he'd change his mind. The point I'm trying to make here about what _should_ have happened a lot sooner is that the problem should have been defined in the simplest possible terms: "We don't want to cut off Tivo. We don't think they are in the wrong." Then it boils down to a simple difference in philosophy and everyone can move on.


- Ted

Chase Venters
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