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SubjectRe: Gauntlet Set NOW!
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    But sometimes we can't make things free, either because it comes to close 
to core IP which we are legally bound to protect, or because it's a derived
work of something we bought and don't ourselves have the right to
redistribute.

At this level of generality, I can only say that if the program is to
be published as non-free software, it will not be available to people
to use in freedom. Its effect will be to tempt people to give up
their freedom. If I had a choice to develop that program or no
program, I would develop no program.

I would rather look for constructive alternatives than just criticize.
In such a situation, I would look for a way to make the program free.
This scenario is too general to get started on that. (I explained in
another message how the term "intellectual property" tends to obscure
important distinctions; this is an example.) In any specific case
there is likely to be some way.

If there is no easy way to make the same program free, there may be a
harder way. People who value freedom strongly sometimes choose the
hard path to freedom rather than the easy path that extends
non-freedom. That is how we extend freedom.

As an ultimate fallback, there is surely some other job you could do
instead.

Linus has made it quite clear in the past that his position on binary
modules is that they are explicitly allowed, but that the maintainers of
such a thing 'get everything they deserve' in terms of maintenance hassle.

Linus has the right to permit this, with his code, and so do other
contributors to Linux. In the GNU Project we usually don't permit
this, and the FSF believes the GPL does not in general permit it, but
occasionally we make an exception when it seems best to do so.

I have no opinion yet about what Andre said, because I cannot form a
clear picture of what he plans to do; I don't know whether it would
violate the GPL, or whether the issue would involve the FSF. We do
not enforce the GPL for Linux in any case; that is the responsibility
of the copyright holders of Linux.





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