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Re: CDDL, OpenSolaris, Choice-of-venue and the star package ...

Matthew Garrett writes:

> Michael Poole <mdpoole@troilus.org> wrote:
>> Saying that choice of venue is free seems no different than saying
>> "You agree to not use this software in connection with the production
>> of nuclear energy" or "You agree to not use this software for any
>> military purpose" is free -- all are waivers of a course of action
>> that the user has in the absence of that license.  After all, just
>> like choice of venue, those only have any effect in the realm of
>> litigation!
> No. Those are restrictions on use, which are explicitly forbidden in
> DFSG 6 ("The license must not restrict anyone from making use of the
> program in a specific field of endeavor."). Choice of venue is not, and
> so isn't. That's a pretty obvious difference.

Fine.  Instead change the restrictions to to "You agree not to produce
nuclear energy" and "You agree not to engage in miltary activity".
The hypothetical "pet a cat" license is generally treated as non-free,
even though the promise in question has nothing to do with software
freedoms.  Are such licenses more or less free than ones where the
promise is restricted to the "four essential freedoms" you mention?

>> These facts are irrelevant.  Users have the freedom to install (or not
>> install) database software with a license that prohibits them from
>> publishing benchmark results.  That restriction still makes such
>> software ineligible as for inclusion in Debian.  We cannot protect
>> people from being sued, but we can protect people from waiving their
>> normal statutory rights.
> When there's no conflict between that waiving and the user's ability to
> engage in the four essential freedoms, then why not?

Even assuming that the choice of venue is not itself a fee or form of
discrimination, how much should I elaborate on the chilling effect of
threats to drag someone into gratuitously inconvenient litigation?
Being able to choose a convenient venue gives copyright owners a huge
lever whenever they disagree with a user's exercise of those freedoms.

Michael Poole

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