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SubjectRe: Fwd: That whole "Linux stealing our code" thing
>As a free software user and developer, the question I have is how come
>the Linux community feels that they can take the BSD code that was
>reverse-engineered at OpenBSD, and put a more restrictive licence onto
>it, such that there will be no possibility of the changes going back
>to OpenBSD, given that the main work on the code has happened at
>OpenBSD? (Obviously, such a scenario it is permitted by the licence,
>but my question is an ethical one -- after all, most components of
>OpenHAL were specifically based on the OpenBSD's ath(4) HAL code.)
>You can see that Christoph Hellwig agrees with this ethical problem,
>as in the message below.
>>On 28/08/07, Christoph Hellwig <> wrote:
>> On Tue, Aug 28, 2007 at 12:00:50PM -0400, Jiri Slaby wrote:
>> > ath5k, license is GPLv2
>> >
>> > The files are available only under GPLv2 since now.
>> Is this really a good idea? Most of the reverse-engineering was
>> done by the OpenBSD folks, and it would certainly be helpful to
>> work together with them on new hardware revisions, etc..

I couldn't agree more. The point is, while we BSD license fans know and
expect people from private industry to take our stuff and use it, at
least private industry does not come to the table with "hey, let's
cooperate" - we know who the corporate whores are, and we act accordingly.

However, when a linux developer comes to us and say "hey lets cooperate"
usually there is a thought of "this is a kindred spirit who understands
what our mutual goals are and won't stab us in the back". My concern
is that this situation will change if this is not rectified.

I think the community needs to decide, should cooperation be based on
morals and trust, or does the Linux community need to be regarded with
less trust than a Corporation, something to be avoided, as while
corporations can be counted on to act without morals, the knife is up
front and visible. They do not come to you with one hand of
cooperation extended and a knife kept behind their back.


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