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Re: license questions.

> hello,


> i'm writing some software for linux and right now fighting with what
> license i should use.

I have to tell you straight away; can't help you there. I do, however, wish
to give you some general feedback on your thoughts.

> we all know what happened with KDE recently in redhat's new distro. the
> programmers are not really happy with what happened there. somehow i can
> understand their situation. they work hard on such a project try
> following their ideas and visions and some big company came up heavily
> changed things that doesn't fit the visions of kde anymore and try
> selling it to their customers.

Personally I see nothing wrong with the RedHat/KDE incident. I mean; 
freedom is not just for individuals, but also for corporations. In my opinion,
the KDE developers are NOT unaware of the inner workings of the GPL.

These people are not newbies to the free software scene, so to speak.

Forks happen every day, this one just happened to get a lot of media
attention and the KDE people just happened to be very childish about it.

> i am still a beliver in opensource, having the code is a good and
> necessary idea. to learn from it, to help the developer fixing the
> software and make a better product out of it. generally to have the
> possibility to compile that software on all kind of systems. 

This will make me sound like a brainwashed RMS drone, but WTF,
I agree with the guy.

You DO seem to believe in open source. You don't, howver, seem to believe
in free software. There is a difference. You consider just the practical
benefits from sharing the blueprints for your software. You do not 
consider the benefits from the freedom that comes with the GPL, but
instead view these benefits as drawbacks.

> i know
> myself good enough and i respect the original author for his work (or
> the maintainer of it). but i know also that i don't really like the idea
> to allow other people to make forks from my works.

This is really the problem, isn't it? Not to be mean or anything, but
I actually think you'll be better off simply going traditional. Don't open
source at all. 

You seem to like the idea that people can help you debug by sharing
the source, but you don't want those people to have the basic freedoms
advocated by the FSF (among others). I'm afraid that you can't have both,
really. If you try to get the benefints from freeing your sources (bugfixes
and so on) without actually allowing people to fork your work, 
you'll just end up with "bad press" really. Sort of like the Microsoft "Shared
Source" stuff.

> it would drive me
> nuts and at the final end it will result in a never ending flame and
> offending of the person who forked my work.

This happens. It's natural. In the end, I think it's a good thing. Heated
flamewars stirs up things and the software can benefit from it.

The bottom line is really that if you want to be in the free software world,
you'll have to learn to live with this. Linus Torvalds certainly did, and
he did pretty good, don't you think?

> for sure this may not happen
> but it could happen one day. i also don't like the idea of companies
> making the big money with my work.

Why not? If they do, they're likely to hire you at a good salary.

> personally i get more and more the
> impression that the 'opensource' community is the best thing that
> happened to many companies.
> to say it in harsh words from a companies view:
> "there are a lot of stupid people outside, that work for free. we let
> them work and sell their stuff. we get the big cash."

Hehe, so be it. I don't mind. As long as they play by the rules that is. A real
problem is when free software is used in proprietary products. That's 
license violations and should be dealt with appropriately.

> i want to avoid this situation. i don't like the idea to work for free
> knowing in the back that some companies can take the stuff and sell it
> for their own profit.

Generally they can't, you know. Since the software is also available for free.

What they can do is package it nicely and print some manuals, and then sell it.

But hey, packaging and printing is also a legitimite business and everyone's

> things heavily changed in the past few years. the
> vision and idea of opensource and real freedom heavily changed and
> bigger companies starts to behave without moral on other people's work.


/Fredrik Persson

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