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Re: why is graphviz package non-free?

On Sun, Jan 16, 2005 at 02:07:10AM -0500, Brian Thomas Sniffen wrote:
> Matthew Garrett <mgarrett@chiark.greenend.org.uk> writes:
> > 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.

Er, I don't see any parallel between these.  We all agree that a Free
license has some limited say over how derivative works can be created,
and we all--I hope--agree that no Free license has any say of any kind
over how unrelated works are licensed.

Add "for the work and derivative works of the licensed software" after
"than the DFSG requires", I guess, if you want to get closer to what
Matthew probably meant.

> >> 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.

A license that says "{GPL-ish source terms}, but all modifications must
be released to the whole world under a BSD-style license" isn't even special-
casing the original author, though.

Glenn Maynard

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