Re: Dual-Licensing Linux Kernel with GPL V2 and GPL V3

From: Ingo Molnar
Date: Thu Jun 14 2007 - 06:39:42 EST

* Alan Cox <alan@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:

> > the new language it contains. It has taken almost 15 years for "Free
> > Software" to make a dent in the market, and, IMHO, a lot of that is both
> > Linux and the "holes" in GPLv2.
> You appear terminally confused. The purpose of the GPL as defined by
> its authors is not commercial success, world domination or making
> zillions of dollars - it is keeping the software protected by that
> license "free" in terms of liberty as measured against the set of
> freedoms to run/modify/etc they discuss in the licence document.
> The fact this is a good license for making zillions of dollars,
> producing good software and the like is either incidental or a logical
> result of the protection of freedoms depending upon which views you
> believe.

that's fine, but the fundamental question is: where is the moral
boundary of the power that the copyright license gives? The FSF seems to
believe "nowhere, anything that copyright law allows us to achieve our
goals is a fair game" - and the GPLv3 shows that belief. I dont
subscribe to that view. I think the proper limit is the boundary where
the limit of the software is - because that's the only sane and globally
workable way to stop the power-hungry. I.e. the information we produce
is covered by the rules of the GPL. It might be used in ways
inconvenient to us, it might be put on hardware we dont like (be that a
Tivo, a landmine or an abortion instrument) but that does not change the
fundamental fact: it's outside the _moral scope_ of our power. Whether
some jurisdictions allow the control of _other_ information via our
information is immaterial. If a jurisdiction allows the control of
hardware that is associated with our software, so what? If a
jurisdiction allows the controlling of various aspects of movie theaters
that happen to play copyrighted movies, does it make it morally right?

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