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    SubjectRe: Dual-Licensing Linux Kernel with GPL V2 and GPL V3
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    On Wednesday 13 June 2007 22:04:04 Alexandre Oliva wrote:
    > On Jun 13, 2007, Daniel Hazelton <dhazelton@enter.net> wrote:
    > > Still doesn't explain why you have argued that the GPLv3 doesn't
    > > attempt to cover hardware and then provide proof that it does.
    >
    > It doesn't cover hardware, in the same way that it doesn't cover
    > patents, and it doesn't cover pro-DRM laws. It merely arranges, as
    > best as we've managed a copyright license to do, that they can't be
    > used as excuses (or tools) to disrespect the freedoms that the GPL
    > demands all licensees to respect for other users.

    Consider this scenario:
    Small company A is manufacturing a new WiFi router.
    They decide to have it run HURD as the OS.
    In complying with the GPLv3 they supply the signing keys and everything else
    needed to install a new kernel on the hardware.
    User B buys the router and modifies the kernel so it drives the WiFi to an
    output power twice that which it is licensed to carry.
    FCC finds out and prosecutes User B for violating the regulations.
    FCC then pulls the small companies license until they change their hardware so
    the driver can't push it to transmit at a higher power level and levies a
    fine.
    Small company A loses the money paid on the fine, has to recall all the
    devices that can be modified (through software) to break the law at a massive
    cost *AND* has to redesign their hardware. The total cost drives the company
    into bankruptcy.

    Small companies C,D and E, in order to avoid the fate of small company A,
    purchases a license for proprietary OS "F" to drive their new hardware.

    Net loss: A lot of the users and publicity that "Free Software" used to get,
    because GPLv3 contains language that opens the companies to lawsuits that
    they wouldn't otherwise face.

    Which is better: Growing the base of installed GPL covered software,
    or "ethics and morals" that demand the language that has been added to the
    GPLv3 ? Personally I'd like to see proprietary software driven into a very
    small "niche" market or entirely out of existence. However much I want this
    to happen, I cannot be anything *BUT* scared of the GPLv3 simply because I
    see it creating massive problems - and all because of a *small* portion of
    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.

    DRH

    --
    Dialup is like pissing through a pipette. Slow and excruciatingly painful.
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