Re: Final text of GPL v3
Chris Waters writes:
> All free licenses, and especially all copyleft licenses, require the
> waiver of certain legal rights (such as the right to sue for copyright
Explain, please. There have been a number of copyright complaints
filed (in Germany and the US) over GPLed software. The GPL's copyleft
nature did not bar those lawsuits. I am not aware of any that went to
trial in the US, but at least one German lawsuit alleging GPL
violations was decided for the licensor, and other cases (in both
countries) have settled with the defendant agreeing to comply with the
> The requirement in copyleft to provide source code can
> also be seen as a fee--in fact, this has been cited as a reason for
> considering the GPLv2 valid, enforcible and non- discriminatory with
> respect to anti-trust law.
That unattributed "has been cited" reads like a poor appeal to an
indefinite authority. Daniel Wallace's failed anti-trust lawsuit
_cited_ such provisions as reasons to consider the GPLv2 invalid,
unenforceable and an unlawful conspiracy with respect to anti-trust
law. We can see how far making that claim got him.
(Incidentally, neither the district court's ruling to dismiss
Wallace's complaint, nor the appeals court's order upholding
dismissal, treat the requirement to provide source code as a fee. To
the contrary, their orders seem to view it primarily as a benefit to
the end user and to the software community.
While there is a fairly broad range of what people on this list think
is a "fee", in the end, providing source code for software that one
distributes has never been considered a fee. Giving up tangible
property, actions unrelated to software (such as petting a cat) and
intellectual property unrelated to the software in question (such as
over-broad patent defense clauses) have been considered fees.
Concessions necessary to exercise software freedoms have not.