Re: GPLv3 Position Statement

From: Thomas Gleixner
Date: Sat Sep 30 2006 - 14:36:39 EST

On Fri, 2006-09-29 at 12:15 +0200, Helge Hafting wrote:
> > - The liability for damages, where the manufacturer of a device might
> > be responsible in case of damage when he abandoned the prevention. This
> > applies to medical devices as well as to lasers, machine tools and many
> > more. Device manufacturers can not necessarily escape such liabilities
> > as it might be considered grossly negligent to hand out the prevention
> > key, even if the user signed an exemption from liability.
> >
> This seems silly to me. Sure, lasers and medical equipment is
> dangerous if used wrong. When such equipment is
> controlled by software, then changing that software brings
> huge responsibility. But it shouldn't be made impossible.
> They can provide the key, with the warning that _using_ it
> means you are on your own and take all responsibility.

This might be silly in your opinion, but it is simply the reality,
especially in the US, but also in Europe we have an increasing madness
in liability jurisdiction. Do you believe that any responsible corporate
lawyer will buy your "with a warning" argument when he is aware of
rulings stating the opposite ?

I talked to very reasonable corporate lawyers about this and they
provided enough prove, that I take this serious.

Your argument is logical and should reflect common sense, but reality is
different. If we could rely on common sense, we would not have this
discussion at all.


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