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

From: Dave Neuer
Date: Thu Jun 14 2007 - 16:24:30 EST

On 6/14/07, Lennart Sorensen <lsorense@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
Nothing prevents you from taking tivos kernel
changes and building your own hardware to run that code on, and as such
the spirit of the GPL v2 seems fulfilled.

Oh, come on: you're not serious, right? Something indeed prevents me
-- the fact that I'm not a hardware manufacturer, I don't have fabs,
outsource vendors to provide me w/ designs, ASICs, etc. Nor to I have
the money to pay one-off prices for various components if they're even
available in batches that small.

This argument seems totally disingenuous to me. The GPLv<3 was written
in a time when the majority of sotware to which the license was
applied was written for general purpose computers. The "user" was the
owner of the computer, and Freedom 0 was about letting that user RUN
modified copies of the software.

Things have changed a lot; we're surrounded by embedded computers, and
Freedom 0 seems to strongly imply I should have the right to run
modified versions of the Free Software I own on the hardware I OWN. Or
is the future of Open Source that you'll be able to hack on free
software as long as you work for Intel, Red Hat, TiVO, Google or OSDL?
Or own many-thousand-$$ fab printer?

Look, I totally respect Linus' and others' position that the license
is an inappropriate way to enforce what they feel are hardware design
decisions, but can we dispense w/ the silly argument that the intent
of the GPL is fullfilled as long as the user is allowed to modify the
software where modify means "imagine a world where they'd be able to
run" it?

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