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Re: Isolationism is history.

On Fri, Jan 30, 2004 at 07:58:55PM -0500, Al Davis wrote:
> On Friday 30 January 2004 04:11 pm, Colin Watson wrote:
> > But be very careful about doing that; you may well end up "tainted"
> > if you sign source licence agreements, and writing free software
> > thereafter could be difficult.
> This is the original basis for the SCO vs. IBM lawsuit.
> Writing any software that is in any way similar thereafter could be 
> different.

Using this line of reasoning you could argue that no one planning on
writing literature for a living should ever read existing copyrighted 
literature for fear of being tainted.  No musician should listen to a
copyrighted work.  

After reading GNU software you are "tainted".

I would think that a deep-pocketed entity with source-code products
might be a bit fearful these days since they might have to prove that
they did not harvest something from the open source community. As the
open-source library grows there might well a requirement on copyrighters
and patenters to prove they did not steal their ideas from the open.  In
the future there might be a stigma of "stolen code" attached to closed
source products and be rejected for fear of losing the investment
through forced elimination as a legal remedy to infringment.

This is a rambling thread so I don't feel too bad about sending it down
yet another path.  It seems that open-source is like gunpowder - it's a 
powerful force that is going to change society.


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