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Re: sendmail X license (fwd)

Scripsit Walter Landry <wlandry@ucsd.edu>
> Nathanael Nerode <neroden@twcny.rr.com> wrote:

> > "This license is governed by California law"

> > OK.

> > "and both of us
> >    agree that for any dispute arising out of or relating to this Software,
> >    that jurisdiction and venue is proper in San Francisco or Alameda
> >    counties."

> > No we don't.  This is non-free.

> I fail to see the difference.

There's a big difference between choice of law and choice of venue.

If it *just* said "governed by California law", and the licensor
decided to file a frivolous lawsuit against me (think
tentacles-of-evil test if you will), they would still have to do it in
*my* home court, and they would then have to explain to *my* local
judge that California law interprets "accompany the copy with full
source code" as implicitly including an obligation to pet a cat.

With the choice-of-venue requirement, the licensor could just file in
*his* home court, and *I* would have to travel to America in order to
convince the American judge that distributing source is not related to
petting cats. (This might not take much convincing, but if I default
on showing up in court since I do not have the money to transport
myself to California, the plaintiff's claim automatically [1] wins the

[1] I don't know whether this is specifically the case in California,
    but there are plenty of jurisdictions where it is true. I might
    pay a local lawyer to show up in court on my behalf, but that also
    assumes that I have the money to do so, and the laywer probably
    wants payment in advance, given that I'm from out-of-state and
    American courts generally (so I'm told) do not sentence the loser
    to pay the winner's legal expenses.

Henning Makholm                   "The great secret, known to internists and
                         learned early in marriage by internists' wives, but
               still hidden from the general public, is that most things get
         better by themselves. Most things, in fact, are better by morning."

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