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Re: Leverage in licensing discussions

Josselin Mouette <joss@debian.org> writes:

> Le mardi 04 novembre 2008 à 10:23 +1100, Ben Finney a écrit :
> > How does this follow? Surely if the firmware is already being
> > distributed by the project, that's a *smaller* incentive to the
> > vendor to change the license.
> Past experience shows that manufacturers aren’t really listening to
> arguments such as “we won’t distribute your drivers unless you do
> that”. See nVidia if you want a good example.

My understanding was that nVidia *do* listen, and have engaged the
discussion numerous times; they just openly disagree. That's fine,
they're free to do that, and I'll continue to recommend against their
hardware for that reason.

> On the contrary, by distributing firmware images in a way that makes
> them already technically modifiable and subject to
> reverse-engineering, it becomes clear that they have nothing to lose
> by distributing the sources, and much to win as it allows the
> community to help them in maintenance tasks.

I find this interesting; if so, it would appear to be a different
tactic from what we find effective in host-CPU-targeted works. Do you
have a reference for an occurrence of this tactic succeeding?

> In other words, I think the carrot has better leverage on [some
> vendors] than the stick.

Doubtless that's true in some cases.

 \          “I hope if dogs ever take over the world, and they chose a |
  `\    king, they don't just go by size, because I bet there are some |
_o__)                   Chihuahuas with some good ideas.” —Jack Handey |
Ben Finney

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