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Re: Qt license change

[Alex, did you have to Cc: everyone under the sun?  I've trimmed to
just debian-devel.]

<aqy6633@acf5.nyu.edu>(Alex Yukhimets) wrote:
>If by "commercial" you mean "closed source" [...]

"Commercial" means "of or pertaining to commerce".  "Commerce" means
"the exchange or buying and selling of commodities", or "transactions
having the objective of supplying commodities".  It's quite possible
(indeed, it's now quite common) to exchange free software (a commodity)
for money; that is a commercial transaction.

"Commercial" does NOT mean "closed source".

>I agree with you completely. Though my opinion probably will not be
>accepted by the majority of developers. I think that GPL'd libraries are 
>NOT FREE. (Even in DFSG sense). QPL'd libary is not free for the same reason.

I don't think you're arguing that GPLed libraries don't meet items 1,
2, 3, 7, 8 or 9 of the DFSG.  Item 4 is an explicit loop-hole which the
GPL doesn't take advantage of.  That leaves item 5, "No Discrimination
Against Persons or Groups", and 6, "No Discrimination Against Fields of

A GPLed library doesn't break 5: anyone may develop GPLed applications
using the library, without exception.

In my opinion, it doesn't break 6 either.  Here is my reason:

I don't believe that the licence used to distribute a piece of software
is part of the "field of endeavour" being engaged in by that software's
author.  The endeavour ("purposeful or industrious undertaking") being
engaged in is that of writing software.  The GPL doesn't prevent anyone
from writing software linked against a GPLed library, or even of
writing an entire new program based on an existing GPLed program.  It
places restrictions on the distribution of works derived from GPLed
code, but does not discriminate between which field of endeavour
produces such a derived work.

In short, I don't consider the act of granting or withholding
permissions under copyright law to be a field of endeavour.

[ Definitions taken from WordNet (r) 1.6 [wn] and Webster's Revised
  Unabridged Dictionary (1913) [web1913].  'dict' is pretty nifty,
  isn't it?  ]

Charles Briscoe-Smith
White pages entry, with PGP key: <URL:http://alethea.ukc.ac.uk/wp?95cpb4>
PGP public keyprint: 74 68 AB 2E 1C 60 22 94  B8 21 2D 01 DE 66 13 E2

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