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Re: Hacking License

On Tue, 11 Dec 2018, Giacomo Tesio wrote:

On Tue, 11 Dec 2018 at 12:22, Paul Jakma <paul@jakma.org> wrote:

Personally, I want a copyleft for the 'gitlab/github/gogs' era: Source
must be made available, unless you're on a desert island or there is a
credibly physical risk of imprisonment or harm to individuals by
disclosing their identity.

The point is, made available to whom?

To anyone.

Unless there is some really compelling reason the modifier can not make their changes available (desert island, dissident), why not just require they make the changes available - given how easy it is to distribute software these days?

The more options are given for not distributing modifications widely, the more opportunity there is for abusers to find loop-holes.

To the users? Sure.

In a world where people happily hack their own software, this might
open a can of worms upstream and downstream:
- it would impose a review process (and infrastructure) for patches
that would slow down development

Making available != getting integrated upstream.

- it would disincentive hack for personal purpose for the burden to
prepare a 3rd party readable patch


Copyleft usually only regulates and imposes conditions upon distribution (so long as the licence is adhered to generally). The conditions on making the sources available are imposed only if one wishes to distribute the work.

If "personal hack" means "no distribution to others", then there's no obligation to make the modifications public.

In both case, strictly applied, such rule would create weird practical
issues to free software.

I think you're objections were not with what I had imagined. ;)

That's why the Hacking License assigns copyright and patent license
upstream but without turning upstream copyright holders into Users.

That does not require the modifier to make the modifications available to the upstream, or anyone though.

They can also become users, obviously, but they can also just benefit
from the copyright assignment and patent license to reimplement
similar behavior without legal issues.

How would I benefit from copyright assignment in modifications to my code, if I can never get (perhaps never even know about) those modifications?

Note that one _already_ gets a copyright interest in any modifications to one's work (GPLed or whatever), if those modifications constitute a derived work. (In at least some jurisdictions).

Just being a copyright holder in some derived work of one's own work is not per se sufficient to ensure one can get access to that derived work though.

Paul Jakma | paul@jakma.org | @pjakma | Key ID: 0xD86BF79464A2FF6A
Another hour, another error report...

	- Eric S. Raymond on linux-kernel

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