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Re: why is graphviz package non-free?

Matthew Garrett <mgarrett@chiark.greenend.org.uk> writes:

> Brian Thomas Sniffen <bts@alum.mit.edu> wrote:
>> Matthew Garrett <mgarrett@chiark.greenend.org.uk> writes:
>>> How does providing extra freedoms to certain recipients decrease the
>>> freeness of a piece of software? Software under the GPL is free.
>> It doesn't.  Requiring that others release more freedom in a mutual
>> work than you will release is non-free.
> Licenses that require people to provide more freedoms than the DFSG
> requires should never be non-free, even if those freedoms are only
> provided to certain people. Free software isn't about fairness or moral
> justification. It's about being able to modify software and pass those
> modifications on to someone else.

How about a license which says "You may copy, modify, or distribute
this program, but only if you publish all your other works under the
terms of this very license."  Is that free?  It looks like your
definition includes it, but I find it abhorrent.

>>> Software under the BSD license is free. Software that is sometimes under
>>> one and sometimes under another ought to still be free.
>> It is.  But software under a "you get GPL-like rights to my parts of
>> this thing we're building together, and I get BSD-like rights to your
>> parts" license is not free.
> Why not? Which freedoms does it impact upon?

The freedom to make and distribute modifications without paying the
author.  Becoming part of a commons is not a payment.


Brian Sniffen                                       bts@alum.mit.edu

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