Re: Micros*ft deal
On Wed, Jun 20, 2007, Robert Millan wrote:
> Since every GNU/Linux distributor seems to be positioning with regards to
> possible patent deals with Microsoft, I thought we could do the same.
> Actually, it's totally unthinkable that a non-profit organization could do
> this kind of deal, in which Microsoft pays you to perform hara-kiri by
> losing the right to distribute GPLv3 software. This is exactly what a
> positioning statement would reflect: that our community model is
> invulnerable to this kind of threats (and also to going out of bussiness,
For the time being, I have no intention of issuing such a statement
or supporting it.
If whatever deal prevents us from distributing GPLv3 software,
then let's just never enter such a deal. No need for a statement, and
certainly not a statement specifically about Microsoft: IBM has far more
patents. And companies with smaller but more focused patent portfolios
are being far more aggressive than Microsoft at suing everyone around,
so regarding patents, *they* are the immediate threat.
Also, large corporations such as Microsoft are highly schizophrenic
entities, and I would not want to jeopardise possible collaborations
with other parts of it (such as Microsoft Research) because of a direct
PR attack. It's unlikely to see it go the Sun way, but I am certain that
there are people within Microsoft wishing to push free software forward,