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Re: GPL v3 Draft

Bas Zoetekouw wrote:
> Hi Glenn!
> You wrote:
>>>3. Digital Restrictions Management.
>>>As a free software license, this License intrinsically disfavors
>>>technical attempts to restrict users' freedom to copy, modify, and share
>>>copyrighted works. Each of its provisions shall be interpreted in light of
>>>this specific declaration of the licensor's intent. 
>>>Regardless of any
>>>other provision of this License, no permission is given to distribute
>>>covered works that illegally invade users' privacy
>>This is a butterknife being boxed with a "you may not sharpen this knife and
>>stab people with it" notice: that's already illegal, and it just serves to
>>complicate the license.
> I don't agree.  The _use_ of a program can be illegal in some
> jurisdiction, while the program itself and its distribution need not be
> illegal.  
> Also, does this clause apply if I use GPLv3 code to write a spyware
> program that is illegal in (e.g.) the US, but not in my home country?
> IMO, this is a clear violation of DFSG 6.  If we allow terrorists to use
> our code, and allow it to be used in biological weapons research,
> clearly also black hat hackers must be allowed to use it to produce
> spyware.

It seems particularly hypocritical in light of
> The restrictions in the HESSLA prohibit specific activities that are
> inexcusable: violations of human rights, and introduction of features
> that spy on the user. People might ask why we do not declare an
> exception for these particular restrictions--why do we stick to the
> general policy of rejecting all restrictions on use and on the
> functionality of modified versions?
> If we were ever going to make an exception to our principles of free
> software, here would be the place to do it. But it would be a mistake
> to do so: it would weaken our general stand, and would achieve
> nothing. Trying to stop those particular activities with a software
> license is either unnecessary or ineffective.
> In regard to modified versions, the HESSLA's restrictions are
> unnecessary. The GNU GPL is sufficient protection against
> privacy-violating features, because it ensures that someone can get
> the source code, find the spyware feature, and publish an improved
> version of the software which does not have the feature. Users can
> then switch to that version if they don't want their personal
> information to be reported.

- Josh Triplett

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