The Industry choice

Bulba! bulba at bulba.com
Thu Jan 6 03:28:20 CET 2005


On 04 Jan 2005 19:25:12 -0800, Paul Rubin
<http://phr.cx@NOSPAM.invalid> wrote:

>"Rob Emmons" <rmemmons at member.fsf.org> writes:
>> Me personally, I believe in free software, but always talk about open
>> source.  My answer regarding forcing people to share -- I like the GPL 
>> -- and I am perfectly happy to have anyone who does not like the GPL 
>> not to use any GPLed software.  I don't feel compelled to share.

>I'd go further.  It's not possible to force anyone to share, but the
>GPL aims to remove software from a system that instead aims to force
>people NOT to share.

Nope. IMHO, GPL attempts to achieve the vendor lock-in. For different
purposes than another well-known vendor, but it still does.

It's actually even worse: the only thing you can't share  on a
well-known vendor's platform is the software written by that
well-known vendor -- you can choose to share or choose not to 
share whatever you or other people write on this platform. 

If GPL folks had their way, it would not be possible not to "share"
_anything_ you create. It is widely acknowledged that GPL
license has the "viral" aspect of extending itself on your 
software - can you point to closed-source licenses that would 
have this aspect? None of the licenses I've read except GPL has 
this aspect.  LGPL is still a different story, though.

>  As the MPAA knows, people do want to share, and
>forcing them not to do so is impossible without turning the world into
>a police state. 

What's the cost of copying music files vs cost of combining 
some programs together, even in the form of e.g. using an
external library?

>Maybe if Python were GPL, then Bulba wouldn't use it,
>but since it's not GPL, some people find themselves much less willing
>to contribute to it than if it were GPL.  

Personally, I have precisely opposite impression: the OSS licensed
with BSD/MIT/Artistic/Python-like license gets contributed to a lot
simply because people like to use it and they are not afraid of
licensing issues. 

When people share:

_it is not because this or that license of software used by them says
so, but because they want to for reasons orthogonal to licensing
issues_.

>(I myself contribute bug
>reports and maybe small patches, but resist larger projects since
>there are GPL'd things that I can do instead).  So catering to the
>wishes of Bulba and Microsoft may actually be impeding Python
>development.  Yes, there are some people selfless enough to do long
>and difficult unpaid software tasks so that Bulba and Bill G can get
>richer by stopping people from sharing it, but others of us only want
>to do unpaid programming if we can make sure that the results stay
>available for sharing.

Actually, I get the impression that GPL-ed software is written by
programmers for programmers, not really for end users. 

GPL folks just insulate themselves in their ghetto from the rest 
of the world. More and more of the successful OSS projects have
non-GPLed  licenses: Apache, Postgres, Perl, Mozilla, Python. Do you
_really_ see few contributions made to those?



--
It's a man's life in a Python Programming Association.



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