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Re: One unclear point in the Vim license

Scripsit Branden Robinson <branden@debian.org>

> Henning said this as well, but I guess it bothers me a little bit that
> the GPL prohibits this sort of sane, reasonable, and harmless activity.

I think an important point is that the situations where the activity
is actually harmless are exactly the situations where the transaction
is between two people who already know each other and both know about
the freedom of the program and where to get the source.

I.e. your trouble is only relevant in situations where the GPL is
effectively unenforceable, because none of the parties who know about
the (formal) infringement have any interest in telling the copyright
holder about it. (I know my friend would give me the source if I ask
for it, so the only thing I would gain by telling on him would be to
get him in trouble - and then I'm not his friend, and binary-only
distribution between non-friends is *not* benign).

I don't think this is important enough to justify the effort of coming
up with attack-proof legal language that describes when the sharing is
OK - not to mention the extra effort every serious user of free
software would need to spend deciphering the letter of such a GPLv3;
the current GPL is already more than convuluted legalese enough for
most people to parse.

Henning Makholm             "Han råber og skriger, vakler ud på kørebanen og
                          ind på fortorvet igen, hæver knytnæven mod en bil,
                     hilser overmådigt venligt på en mor med barn, bryder ud
                    i sang og stiller sig til sidst op og pisser i en port."

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