OT: Mobile Internet Toolkit EULA

Tim Hammerquist tim at vegeta.ath.cx
Tue Nov 13 05:22:32 CET 2001


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Guido Stepken <stepken at little-idiot.de> graced us by uttering:

[ snipped excerpt from MS MIT EULA ]

> Thanx lots for checking this out ! Hmmm, that means, that it is forbidden 
> to produce (distribute) code, consisting of (L)GPL Software and Microsoft 
> OpenSource. One is not allowed to mix code. BSD License + Microsoft Code, 
> that's OK !
> Any ideas, why ?

The BSD license is unrestrictive. I can take an entire BSD-licensed
file, cut-and-paste it into my own project, sign, seal, and
deliver...and not even have to mention where I got it.

This is fine by Microsoft because it means if they find anything they
want somewhere inside a Berkeley Quality Software project, they can just
take it.

What I think was even more appalling was the restriction on

<citation>
:   (ii) not using Potentially Viral Software (e.g. tools) to
:        develop Recipient software which includes the Software,
:        in whole or in part.
</citation>

This means I can't

  - test a script using a perl binary that falls under the (default)
    Artistic License.
  - test a script using a Python binary that falls under the GPL
    compatible license.
  - _use_ Vim or Emacs to edit _any_ file in the project I'm developing.
  - make a tarball of a directory tree using GNU tar or GNU gzip.
  - ...and so on

Limitations on the product distributed is nothing new.  OTOH, Microsoft
has just attempted to make it _ILLEGAL_ to use a python binary I've
compiled myself (though ActivePython is probably alright).  _This_ is
what a _huge_ number of people are upset about.

Opinions? Rebuttals?

Tim Hammerquist
- -- 
There's something to be said for returning the whole syntax tree.
             -- Larry Wall in <199710221833.LAA24741 at wall.org>

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