Linked by Thom Holwerda on Sat 2nd Dec 2006 00:38 UTC, submitted by Bob
Oracle and SUN "Over the last few weeks, I have had a few people ask me why Sun didn't choose GPL v3 for Freeing the Java platform. 'Does this mean you're siding with Linus?' they have asked me. they have said, 'because you chose GPL v2 only rather than GPLv2 or any later version as the license for the Java platform, preventing automatic use of GPL v3. You must be critical of it.' Those conclusions are not true at all. The answers are actually pretty straightforward, and when I discussed this matter with Richard Stallman he actually agreed we were making an acceptable choice here. I'll explain."
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Answer
by zizban on Sat 2nd Dec 2006 00:57 UTC
zizban
Member since:
2005-07-06

why Sun didn't choose GPL v3 for Freeing the Java platform
Maybe because the GPL v.3 hasn't been finalized yet?

Reply Score: 5

RE: Answer
by dylansmrjones on Sat 2nd Dec 2006 01:19 UTC in reply to "Answer"
dylansmrjones Member since:
2005-10-02

Oh, that's probably why :p
It's probably why I'm not running Windows NT 8.0 yet (development hasn't even begun) - or Gnome 4.0 :p

The reasoning for Sun's choice seems very reasonable ;)

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Answer
by Redeeman on Sat 2nd Dec 2006 01:26 UTC in reply to "RE: Answer"
Redeeman Member since:
2006-03-23

well, the reason you arent running gnome 4.0 is because its an inheritly impossible thing in this universe, a theoretical gnome 4.0 would have removed all features, its only purpose would be to remove features from OTHER stuff, however, since all that is accomplished by gnome 3.4 ;)

Reply Score: 4

RE[3]: Answer
by dylansmrjones on Sat 2nd Dec 2006 01:45 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Answer"
dylansmrjones Member since:
2005-10-02

Haha :p ... I think you're hinting at the Gnome HIG and its effects on Gnome and Gnome-related applications?

Well, I don't think it will have all features removed, but I have to admit that quite a few handy things have been eradicated from Gnome. A bit too much, IMHO.

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: Answer
by linux-it on Sat 2nd Dec 2006 09:06 UTC in reply to "Answer"
linux-it Member since:
2006-07-13

in fact, think of it...

you have GPL v2 and you know what's in it.

Now, FSF want's to block something, like say the MS/Novell deal and changes the GPLv3 to reflect this.
They don't care that they in fact damage the open source community with that. How would it affect your product ?

Maybe GPLv3 won't be good after all. Maybe in 6 months time we see that it should be boycotted... who knows.... wait and see.

Reply Score: 2

Newer is not better
by pcummins on Sat 2nd Dec 2006 01:10 UTC
pcummins
Member since:
2005-07-10

Sun made the right decision. Since GPLv3 is untested and unfinished, there is no benefit (and a lot of disadvantages) to making Java GPLv3 vs the more acceptable (and well known) GPLv2. Anyone who is pushing Sun to go GPLv3 obviously has never been bitten by x.0 software or the first new version of anything.

Reply Score: 5

Joe Buck
by JoeBuck on Sat 2nd Dec 2006 01:21 UTC
JoeBuck
Member since:
2006-01-11

I agree that it's fine for Sun to wait, but we won't be getting the first version of GPLv3. There have already been two drafts, and there will be more revisions before we are done. My guess is that Sun will enthusiastically support moves by the FSF to close the loophole that the Microsoft/Novell deal used; can you imagine Microsoft making a deal with Novell saying customers are only immune from Microsoft suits over Java if they get Java from Novell?

I hope that the final GPLv3 is a document that Sun can live with.

Reply Score: 5

double vision
by postmodern on Sat 2nd Dec 2006 01:30 UTC
postmodern
Member since:
2006-01-27

"because you chose GPL v2 only rather than GPLv2 [...]"

Wow I'm seeing double here ;)

Reply Score: 1

RE: double vision
by Priest on Sat 2nd Dec 2006 01:45 UTC in reply to "double vision"
Priest Member since:
2006-05-12

Quotes are meed to explain that.

They chose "GPLv2" only, rather than "GPLv2 or later". I believe the difference is that "GPLv2 or later" would allow me to make changes and release them under GPLv3, where for the former enforces GPLv2.

Reply Score: 5

b3timmons
Member since:
2006-08-26

As pointed out ad nauseum, no product can be licensed GPLv3 since v3 does not exist.

However, as the largest single corporate contributor to FOSS, Sun Microsystems has positions on software licensing that deserve much attention. This article by Sun employee Phipps stresses what CEO Schwartz and Software VP Green already stated during the GPL Java announcement: that the GPLv3 draft and process are both excellent responses to important challenges such as software patents and DRM.

It's becoming ever clearer that the holdouts to the process and the real opposition to v3 simply have vested corporate interests, such as enforced DRM and using software patents to divide users. Personally, those interests in general are repugnant enough to me.

Some, however, may be sensitive to more concrete concerns. For example, consider past corporate attempts to villify the GPL, the egregious SCO legal circus which is mercifully drawing to a close, and a controversial patent agreement that is now (just in time after SCO) drawing ire. There is a common monopolistic element to those considerations that counts on public passivity in order to grind the GPL (v2, v3, etc.) down to irrelevance. If you have opposed the monopolist ever at all, consider GPLv3 as an essential counterweight to their inordinate power.

Please support the GPLv3 process and adoption. At the very least, please oppose DRM and software patents.

Edited 2006-12-02 02:07

Reply Score: 5

sigzero Member since:
2006-01-03

Please support the GPLv3 process and adoption

No, I don't like what I have seen and where it is going.

Reply Score: 5

Xaero_Vincent Member since:
2006-08-18

You don't like what you don't understand.

If you did, you would know that the GPLv2 has many flaws that didn't exist 15 years ago but do now.

As for Java, I dont really care if they stay with GPLv2. Open sourcing Java was a big move for Sun. People shouldn't be pestering them to do anything further at this time. Sun will decide what to do.

Reply Score: 5

john Member since:
2005-11-10

You don't like what you don't understand.

Of course, some people don't like what they do understand. My guess is that Linus understands v3, and he's not interested.

The truth is, some people won't embrace GPL v3, and they'll fully understand it. I am actually somewhat afraid that v3 could be at least the beginning of a splinter in the opensource community. People that coexisted under GPL v2 will now find themselves divided into 2 groups: the "best thing since sliced bread, and if you don't agree, that means you just don't understand" group, and the "we do understand, and thanks, but no thanks" group. Of course, there could be a 3rd group, the "we would use v3 if we could, but it's been written to prevent us from running our business" group. If that group comes into being, that could potentially remove a significant portion of the commercial use (you know, those evil people that can actually employ people and provide them with a paycheck so that they can spend their time writing software that we all get to use for free).

I know I'm being sarcastic, and I'm doing as much guessing as anyone else, but I do see the possibility that this new license could have some unintended fallout, much like the Novell/Microsoft deal. You can be sure that Novell was taken by surprise at the negative response to what they perceived to be a good thing. The same could hold true for this new license, and people are so busy praising it, they don't seem to think about what could happen.

I just hope that I'm wrong.

Reply Score: 5

linux-it Member since:
2006-07-13

problem here is in fact that you probably are not wrong and I also hope you are..

So far it seems that GPLv3/FSF is going to do a lot of damage. Just like the open source community in general by the way they pick on the MS/Novell deal.

In fact, the OS community exactly does what MS only dream of and that is to let Novell fail. They give you the gun, and 'we' are happy shooting ourselves in the feet. Happy, more than ever. FSF will eventually give you a bigger gun...

Reply Score: 1

codehead78 Member since:
2006-08-04

What happens when Steve Ballmer thinks about GPLv3? Does he smile?

Reply Score: 1

linux-it Member since:
2006-07-13

very well possible that he'll smile, yes.

What happens is that Novell may die thanks to "us" and the FSF. One less on the route....

Reply Score: 2

deanlinkous Member since:
2006-06-19

What happens is that Novell may die thanks to "us" and the FSF. One less on the route....
Thats right! A dirty company goes to the dump. A million more spring up. The good ones move on, the bad ones fall. Redhat has been in business a long time.

Such is the power of GPL covered software, free software, so free you cannot catch it, cannot kill it, cannot snuff it out. It is a underground movement that is in plain view and nothing can be done about it. Free software ROCKS!

Reply Score: 3

hal2k1 Member since:
2005-11-11

//So far it seems that GPLv3/FSF is going to do a lot of damage. Just like the open source community in general by the way they pick on the MS/Novell deal.//

Yet another person who doesn't seem to understand that the GNU/Linux code that forms the majority of SuSe doesn't belong to Novell. It doesn't belong to Microsoft either.

MS/Novell are trying to make a deal not to sue each others customers over code that doesn't belong to either of them. Exactly how do MS or Novell get to deal here?

It is clear that the only purpose of the deal is to engender FUD ... Microsoft are trying to imply that they might sue other Linux users.

Once again, that would be Microsoft sueing other people (who do not have a contract with Microsoft) for using someone else's code that is nothing like Microsoft's code.

Exactly what standing would Microsoft have to sue?

Microsoft have been very very careful not to say. The strong implication here is that Microsoft have no standing to sue Linux users, and that the "deal" between MS and Novell is pure advertising budget and marketing ... nothing more.

Edited 2006-12-02 11:51

Reply Score: 4

linux-it Member since:
2006-07-13

"MS/Novell are trying to make a deal not to sue each others customers over code that doesn't belong to either of them. Exactly how do MS or Novell get to deal here?"

and that has been said before -- the deal about not chasing after each other doesn't say a thing. it's useless. if there would be infringements, MS already would have sued people.

So, that leaves the dedicatio of interoperability and that's something you don't want, right ? What happens here is that something that could be useful, is being stopped in it's tracks because of the feeling people have in their stomach, not based on thinking before writing.

As said before -- this deal doesn't have to be bad at all. Parts of the deal are useless; so far the majority of the linux community now kills Novell because they don't like something that doesn't say a thing at all. Does MS like this ? YES!

And now. FSF starts tinkering about wais to kill off such deals. Try to stop improvements on code, making it worse for everyone. It's just hard to understand why people want to do this. Do we want to see linux go further, go back, novell to die ? Tell me. Convince me.

Reply Score: 2

deanlinkous Member since:
2006-06-19

So far it seems that GPLv3/FSF is going to do a lot of damage. Just like the open source community in general by the way they pick on the MS/Novell deal.

Uh I think you are confused about who is doing the damage here....need to rethink it a bit.

Reply Score: 4

deanlinkous Member since:
2006-06-19

Then participate and make it something you will like and you will have a say in where it is going!

Reply Score: 1

dagw Member since:
2005-07-06

Except that doesn't work. The FSF have already made up their minds about where they are going with GPLv3 and I seriously doubt anybody can change their minds.

Reply Score: 1

roger64 Member since:
2006-08-15

but "ad nauseam" ;-) sorry

Reply Score: 1

g2devi Member since:
2005-07-09

> It's becoming ever clearer that the holdouts to the
> process and the real opposition to v3 simply have
> vested corporate interests, such as enforced DRM

That's an unfair characterization, since the kernel developers and Allan Cox who is strongly anti-DRM. are against the GPLv3 too:
http://www.uwsg.indiana.edu/hypermail/linux/kernel/0609.2/1882.html
http://lwn.net/Articles/200422/

Some people are just plain happy with the GPLv2 and think that it strikes the right balance and that any more restrictions would hurt their projects rather than help. BSD developers feel the same way about the BSD license in comparison to the GPLv2.

Personally, I think that the GPLv3 with the TiVoization clause made optional and the proposed Novellization made standard is the right balance to win over nearly all the "GPLv2 only" holdouts, but ultimately, it's up to the developers to decide.

Reply Score: 3

robilad Member since:
2006-01-02

Please make sure to comment on the GPLv3 draft wiki, as well.

Reply Score: 1

b3timmons Member since:
2006-08-26

"That's an unfair characterization, since the kernel developers and Allan Cox who is strongly anti-DRM. are against the GPLv3 too:

No, it's fair, since DRM is presented as but one example of the interests, and most of the v3 opposition work for corporations. This conflict of interest can be made less harmful with more frankness from the firms about the interests.

"Personally, I think that the GPLv3 with the TiVoization clause made optional and the proposed Novellization made standard is the right balance to win over nearly all the "GPLv2 only" holdouts, but ultimately, it's up to the developers to decide."

The right balance you claim will likely be in the next draft. The Tivoization piece is already addressed by the use of optional restrictions. See the following article :
http://kerneltrap.org/node/7238

Edited 2006-12-03 16:59

Reply Score: 2

bob here
by deanlinkous on Sat 2nd Dec 2006 04:31 UTC
deanlinkous
Member since:
2006-06-19

Another good article that osnews didnt *publish*

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2006/11/30/sun_gnu_solaris/

Reply Score: 2

Why not?
by elsewhere on Sat 2nd Dec 2006 05:10 UTC
elsewhere
Member since:
2005-07-13

I see no reason why Sun shouldn't adopt v3 (assuming the final is more or less in line with the draft so far), whether alongside v2 or even as a replacement. It will only benefit the community and further increase acceptance.

BUT, and of course I can't help throwing in a but, it's not really a huge paradigm shift in Sun's strategy. GPL v2 was a big move, and I applaud them for it. GPL v3 has absolutely no implications for Sun over v2, so will likely be a no-brainer for them to adopt as well if only for the additional headlines it will generate.

Remember that Sun owns Java, they hold copyright for all of the code, they own or license anything they're aware could be "intellectual property", they already have it under multiple licenses and are free to use the code as they see fit since they themselves are not constrained by the GPL. At this point I honestly believe the risk of a significant fork of Java is minimal enough to be an acceptable calculated risk, and in a worst-case scenario, Sun will be under no obligation to release future versions under the same licensing. The upside is substantial and the downside is negligible.

But it's not really the embrace of free software philosophy that many are trying to make it out to be. If Sun opened Java to a collaborative development model without requiring copyright assignment, or at least adopted the GNU model of accepting copyright assignment with a commitment that the code will not be re-licensed under a manner inconsistent with the GPL, then I'd be impressed. But they're a business with a big stake in Java and would never choose to cede that control. I don't blame them, just pointing it out. Java (along with OpenSolaris et al.) are amazing gifts to the FLOSS community, but not a sign that Sun is truly embracing FLOSS.

Still, I'm not going to look a gift horse in the mouth. And don't get me wrong, I'm really not trying to take away what Sun has and is continuing to do. For me personally, v3 or v2 makes no difference for Java, I'm just grateful enough that they've donated it in the manner they have. And if v3 makes it even more palatable for the FL side of the FLOSS camp, so be it, it only everyone stronger.

Reply Score: 2

Which one is better for the community/
by netpython on Sat 2nd Dec 2006 06:32 UTC
netpython
Member since:
2005-07-06

I wonder which one is better for the community at large.

Reply Score: 2

v3 is to extream.
by theTSF on Sat 2nd Dec 2006 07:27 UTC
theTSF
Member since:
2005-09-27

GPL v3 as it stands right now is much to extreme and a knee jerk reaction about our current problems (DRM and Software Patents especially). It has gone past the greater idea of sharing software and ideas to a point where the license is restricting developers to follow one man vision of the perfect software world. (A Man who is Closed mindedly "Liberal", and has openly stated his hatred of almost all companies who don't agree with his vision) This direction of the GPL when it becomes more and more Corporate unfriendly will only backfire, and kill the GPL. A lot of companies see the value of Open Source and would like to try to license it using a standard Licensing agreement. But these restrictions make it more and more difficult for them to play fairly. It is much a like the http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jim_Crow_laws">Jim for corporations. Making it more and more difficult for them to operate with the GPL.

Just the DRM restriction alone is too much even for many vocal Open Source leaders, who don't even use it, or agree with it. But most smart people or at lest open minded people realize while they may not agree with DRM they know why it is there in the first place to an extent and realize if you are going to make open software license you cant restrict your idea of Evil Uses as well.

Reply Score: 5

RE: v3 is to extream.
by Redeeman on Sat 2nd Dec 2006 15:16 UTC in reply to "v3 is to extream."
Redeeman Member since:
2006-03-23

you make a good argument, the only problem is that what you are saying is wrong.

the gpl v3 has no restrictions against DRM, you can create all the ugly drm shit you want.

you are right though, smart people know WHY drm is there. its there because some employees at <insert hollywood company> need to lie to the big moneyman boss, with something like: "drm will keep your money safe!", while in reality the employee knows that drm is like: "here, this is my car, you cant drive it, as you dont have the keys, but oh, here, take the keys too, but PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE dont drive it!!!"

Reply Score: 1

RE: v3 is to extream.
by deanlinkous on Sat 2nd Dec 2006 16:11 UTC in reply to "v3 is to extream."
deanlinkous Member since:
2006-06-19

A lot of companies see the value of Open Source and would like to try to license it using a standard Licensing agreement.

So you think this is the answer? Sure did not do UNIX much good did it. That is where you want Linux to end up?

This direction of the GPL when it becomes more and more Corporate unfriendly will only backfire, and kill the GPL.
How? The direction/goal of the GPL is/was/and always will be is to try and uphold the four freedoms. v3 does this (as well as it can) and therefore is a success whether or not anyone uses it. You can't kill a license.

Just the DRM restriction alone is too much even for many vocal Open Source leaders, who don't even use it, or agree with it. But most smart people or at lest open minded people realize while they may not agree with DRM they know why it is there in the first place to an extent and realize if you are going to make open software license you cant restrict your idea of Evil Uses as well.
The DRM stuff is not about restricting your usage. It has nothing to do with your usage. It has to do with protecting access to the source code and the ability to change that source and use the program. In other words, it is trying to PROTECT your usage of the program. IF DRM restricts this then that is unacceptable. If DRM does not restrict this then it is fine. Second of all if you have read the latest draft of the GPLv3 then you know that the exceptions clause would allow for DRM while protecting a little bit of the freedoms. A GREAT BIG compromise on the part of the FSF.

It has gone past the greater idea of sharing software and ideas to a point where the license is restricting developers to follow one man vision of the perfect software world. (A Man who is Closed mindedly "Liberal", and has openly stated his hatred of almost all companies who don't agree with his vision)
By the way GPLv2 was wrote by the man with those same"closed minded liberal" ideals and those ideals are exactly what got Linux to the point it is at now. Nobody had any input with v2 it was just that nut and he did pretty damn good at protecting the freedoms. Now everyone has a chance to help with the v3 process and yet some of the most important people are sitting on the sidelines acting like it is a freak show or something. So how do you plan to share software that you cannot decrypt or not build or not install? That is what some companies are doing, not just TIVO!

Linus originally wanted "no corporate usage". How would that allow business to operate using linux? I wonder what made him so corporate friendly nowadays?

Wait a minute. Who gives a shit if businesses can use linux or not? I don't! This is the peoples OS, this is yours and mine. This is about our freedom to use a computer. Business has a OS provided by a business and they can play that card or they can choose to follow the rules and use our OS. But we should not sacrifice our freedoms just so businesses can make even more profit.

Edited 2006-12-02 16:22

Reply Score: 5

RE[2]: v3 is to extream.
by mkone on Sun 3rd Dec 2006 16:28 UTC in reply to "RE: v3 is to extream."
mkone Member since:
2006-03-14

I disagree here. DRM here is not preventing you from modifying the program. The argument presupposes that you should have the right to expect others to not be able to distinguish your version.

What Linus originally wanted is irrelevant. Linus has no opposition to proprietary software in principle. He happens to want to license his software under the GPL. He was very wise to not include that "v2 or later" because it can be abused.

There are 2 things that v3 of the GPL tries to do.

The first is that web services should not be able to distinguish between a modified version of a program, and the original. The most effective way of doing this would be to sign the version provided by the service provider with a key and, and since this key would not be available for someone who is modifying the program.

This is a legitimate use of DRM. A good use, which Stallman wants to prevent.

The second is for hardware to only run with version authorised by the hardware manufacturer, or provider. Very useful to discriminate against those who could modify the software to get around software restrictions. Say, for example, get around a section of iTunes like software that applies DRM to the song after downloading it. So on a device that is meant for a single purpose (such as the Tivo), an easy way is to just make the hardware check the software for a digital signature.

Reply Score: 0

RE[3]: v3 is to extream.
by deanlinkous on Sun 3rd Dec 2006 17:52 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: v3 is to extream."
deanlinkous Member since:
2006-06-19

Stallman doesn't want to prevent anything... He wants to protect the four freedoms - period. If anything conflicts with those four freedoms then it is not acceptable. If anyone/anything "kills puppies" while still doing what is asked by the GPL then it is all well and good. ;)

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: v3 is to extream.
by Valhalla on Sun 3rd Dec 2006 17:58 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: v3 is to extream."
Valhalla Member since:
2006-01-24

mkone wrote:
-"The first is that web services should not be able to distinguish between a modified version of a program, and the original. The most effective way of doing this would be to sign the version provided by the service provider with a key and, and since this key would not be available for someone who is modifying the program. "

mkone wrote:
-"The second is for hardware to only run with version authorised by the hardware manufacturer, or provider. Very useful to discriminate against those who could modify the software to get around software restrictions. Say, for example, get around a section of iTunes like software that applies DRM to the song after downloading it. So on a device that is meant for a single purpose (such as the Tivo), an easy way is to just make the hardware check the software for a digital signature."

mkone wrote:
-"Very useful to discriminate against those who could modify the software to get around software restrictions."


it's the DEVELOPERS who choose how to licence their code. if they want to allow companies to take their code and restrict it's usage through DRM then they will choose a licence that allows that.

if the developers doesn't want someone to be able to take their code and provide a service that only allows a signed version of that code to access those services, then they can use GPLv3.

mkone wrote:
-"This is a legitimate use of DRM. A good use, which Stallman wants to prevent."

Stallman can't prevent that other than for code written by the FSF.

and what makes it a 'good use'? it's up to the developers to decide what is 'good use' concering their own code.

all your argumentation stems from some weird assumption that developers should not have the right to decide how their own code is being used. they decide if GPLv3 is to extreem by either using it or not.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: v3 is to extream.
by b3timmons on Sun 3rd Dec 2006 18:02 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: v3 is to extream."
b3timmons Member since:
2006-08-26

"I disagree here. DRM here is not preventing you from modifying the program. The argument presupposes that you should have the right to expect others to not be able to distinguish your version."

That's not the point: privacy presupposes that I should have the right to decide how others will know anything about me, including anything about my software running on MY PROPERTY. Tivoization allows Tivo rights to a device which I then OWN, rights that are incompletely passed to me when that device becomes my property. The missing right is to modify the covered software and run it just as Tivo had the right to do. So if Tivo could modify and run it on that device, and my buying the device enabled the distribution of the covered software, the GPL kicks in, and I should thus be able to exercise that exact right. v3 will restore this scenario to what v2 provided before Tivo.

Your subsequent DRM examples presuppose that expedient implementation matters more than my freedom. (How do we even know that other reasonably expedient alternatives are impossible?)

Learning the power of technology brings a moral imperative that we learn about and restore the liberties that have long been eroded in the pursuit of that power.

Edited 2006-12-03 18:12

Reply Score: 3

RE: v3 is to extream.
by b3timmons on Sat 2nd Dec 2006 16:36 UTC in reply to "v3 is to extream."
b3timmons Member since:
2006-08-26

"Just the DRM restriction alone is too much even for many vocal Open Source leaders, who don't even use it, or agree with it. But most smart people or at lest open minded people realize while they may not agree with DRM they know why it is there in the first place to an extent and realize if you are going to make open software license you cant restrict your idea of Evil Uses as well."

Nonsense: the GPL, v2 or current v3 draft, has absolutely no restrictions on anything except distribution; "evil uses", as use, are unrestricted. Indeed, when you can get v2- or v3-licensed software, you do not even have to accept the license to do whatever "evil" you want to do with it, short of distribution. Acceptance of v2 or v3 (as drafted) is required only when you distribute the covered software.*

Perhaps what you are thinking of is how a hardware company can take others' hard work--GPL-licensed software--and have the freedom granted by the GPL to modify and use the software on a device. Then the company designs the hardware in such a way that when the software is distributed on it, the users who buy that hardware from the company do not receive the same freedom that the company enjoyed to modify and use the software on what the users now own. (Note that other cases, such as software in ROM, are irrelevant to the GPL.) Thus, the company is able to exploit the software and weasel out of the corresponding obligations expected of everyone.

Note there are at least three injustices here. First, users are not granted freedom that they should get--it's plainly unfair. Second, it is unfair that the company can escape obligations that other distributors of the software must follow. Third, an essential license to FOSS, the GPLv2, once trusted to protect copyright holders, is undermined. The damage does not stop here: it encourages others to figure out other ways to out-fox the GPL. Indeed, lawyers have since made the GPLv2 into legal swiss cheese. As is all too evident, "staying the course" is not necessarily the best answer when the status quo becomes more of a joke.

When the GPLv3 comes into being there will be at least as many license choices that support subjugation via DRM as there are presently. The choice will continue to be there for the DRM enforcers.

Developers who wish to not be associated with enforced DRM at all have no license choices presently--no choices at all, unlike spoiled DRM enforcers. The GPLv3 will give these developers relief.

(*)Licensors are free, of course, to add to v3 certain types of permissions or restrictions.

Edited 2006-12-02 16:51

Reply Score: 3

GPLv3 "web app" and DRM objections
by b3timmons on Sat 2nd Dec 2006 07:41 UTC
b3timmons
Member since:
2006-08-26

When will the GPLed "web app" myth die? I.e., some still believe that v3 automatically applies to web apps. False: v3 applies only by the developer's choice of exercising an optional restriction.

Forcing DRM upon users via their own property (hardware) interests the MPAA, RIAA, and their members such as Sony and Disney, the kind of people who are ordering around the much more important IT industry, overturning pretexting prohibitions, lobbying for laws like the draconian DMCA, etc. It's not a simple matter of them looking after their interests; the GPLv3 offers consumers more power than the producers are willing to let them have, hence their opposition to the entire GPLv3 process. The increased usage of DRM coincides with the decreasing share of general purpose computing devices. Thus it is unsurprising that to further their own interests, these producers wish to destroy an entire way of making software. These very same people would prefer that people forget about DRM, e.g., "If consumers even know there's a DRM, what it is, and how it works, we've already failed."--Disney executive.

The DMCA and its ill-conceived relations become far nastier than anyone would have expected as enforced DRM proliferates. What could possibly counter them? How much should privacy be taken for granted? In fact, the GPLv3 can make a difference. The GPLv3 will protect enough against DRM and stand for enough to make it the license choice for even non-kernel projects opposed to subjugating users. It offers a chance for enforced DRM to be less attractive and can encourage producers to innovate and devise less intrusive ways to implement their offerings. After all, DRM is merely a (mean) means to an end, not an end in itself.

For me personally, DRM is moot since I simply avoid its forms. The DMCA and company, however, are not moot but are insults, yet another turn towards a corrupt state. The DRM issue and the oppression it enables is perhaps the most festering sore in the FOSS community. The cure requires much more exposure.

Edited 2006-12-02 07:43

Reply Score: 5

About gplv3 and dual licensing
by mkone on Sat 2nd Dec 2006 12:45 UTC
mkone
Member since:
2006-03-14

I think one other aspect people have not talked about is how GPLv3 affects dual licensing arrangements.

It could become a clever way for companies to actually prevent GPLv3 being used by their competitors. Say, If I made an OS, and wanted to become a Tivo competitor. I license Solaris under GPLv3, and require that contributions have copyright assigned to to me. I will then use the code under a different license as I see fit on the PVR box I sell, and not have to deal with the pseky DRM clause on the license.

Now DRM is not going away, despite what RMS believes he can achieve. Universal is not going to allow some box that can be hacked to offer their content.

So the end result is that only the person who can relicense the code can use it in applications where DRM is mandatory. No, you are not going to get Hollywood to agree to let people modify their boxes and be indistinguishable from the original. It defeats the purpose of DRM, and I suspect this is what Stallman desires.

This anti-Tivoisation clause is really quite silly. Tivo gives you the source to do as you like with it, except run it on the Tivo box. If Tivo put their software on ROM, and it could not be updated, then they will be compliant with GPLv3, because even they would not be able to modify the software on the box. So to get around this clause, they could just remove the freedom to tinker entirely. So what's the point of this clause again.

Reply Score: 1

RE: About gplv3 and dual licensing
by hal2k1 on Sat 2nd Dec 2006 12:59 UTC in reply to "About gplv3 and dual licensing"
hal2k1 Member since:
2005-11-11

//Universal is not going to allow some box that can be hacked to offer their content.//

Existing format DVD disks represent the entirity of the market at this time. Universal is never going to ignore that installed base of equipment.

As long a Universal releases movies on DVD format discs that can be played by the enormous number of existing DVD players, then yes, Universal is indeed going to allow some box that can be hacked to offer their content. Universal cannot avoid doing so and still have a market, as the situation stands now.

The way that the media companies are behaving over next-gen optical discs is very reminiscent of DAT tape format.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Digital_Audio_Tape

Now that worked out really well, didn't it?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Audio_Home_Recording_Act

Edited 2006-12-02 13:02

Reply Score: 2

mkone Member since:
2006-03-14

I meant, a box offering their content as in over the internet say. The whole idea of physical media is you have to buy the media along with the content, so aside the issue of what they like to call piracy, they do not have an issue with that.

The problem of using a PVR box, or other, is that they do not own the medium, which is the internet. They merely use it, like everyone else. There is not physical exchange like with a DVD. So they want to give you the software to use, and make sure you are not using any other software. They do not like the fact that if people could hide the fact that they are using some other software, they could not control how people used the content.

For example, Apple's iTunes downloads songs from their server, and then applies DRM on your box. Now the recording industry would love to have a way to ensure that only approved clients can access the servers which have the music, and can hence they know they will apply the DRM.

Stallman (or someone else) once said that GPL software

Reply Score: 1

mkone Member since:
2006-03-14

The question is, is it right to limit the uses of software by using the license. Stallman doesn't want GPL software in DRM devices. So should the GPL be rewritten to disallow a specific use.

Reply Score: 1

Valhalla Member since:
2006-01-24

mkone wrote:
-"The question is, is it right to limit the uses of software by using the license. Stallman doesn't want GPL software in DRM devices. So should the GPL be rewritten to disallow a specific use."

yes, it is the right of those who WROTE the software to limit it's uses. they are the ones who CHOOSE which licence they want to use. that is their RIGHT.

if they want to licence it under GPLv2, GPLv3, BSD, MIT etc then it's their choice. GPLv3 is a CHOICE, it's an option for developers who does not want their code to be incorporated into projects that employ restrictive DRM. it's a LICENCE, you use it or you don't. and if you want to use someone else's code, you use it under their terms, or you don't use it.

Reply Score: 4

hal2k1 Member since:
2005-11-11

//Stallman doesn't want GPL software in DRM devices. //

No.

Stallman doesn't want any GPL software to use any means of circumventing the intent of the GPL. The GPL requires that the source code is always available, and that recipients of GPL software have the freedom to modify the software (as long as the source remains open). That means Stallman wants provisions in GPL3 that one cannot use DRM to prevent end users from being able to modify any GPL software they receive.

To most people, in most situations, this is reasonable. There are however cases where it is questionable ... for example, wireless drivers ... (people shouldn't be able to boost the transmitted power because of the potential for interfering with other transmitters). Voting machines ... (preventing the software from being changed there to rig the outcome is a requirement). Mobile phones ... (could potentially play havoc with the mobile networks with modified software).

Edited 2006-12-03 11:19

Reply Score: 1

pinky Member since:
2005-07-15

>for example, wireless drivers ... (people shouldn't be able to boost the transmitted power because of the potential for interfering with other transmitters)

If something should be unmodifiable than you should burn it into hardware or write it into a ROM.

>Voting machines

No problem here with GPLv3. GPLv3 says that i as the producer of the voting machines have to give my customers tha ability to change the software. For voting machines the customer would be a country. But than the customer (here the country) can of course lock the voting system so that it can't be manipulated by someone else during the election. The GPLv3 just says that the power have to be by the user (in this case the country) and not by the producer who sells it.
Same is true for secure IT infrastructures in a company that's also no problem with GPLv3 because the company has the control over the software they are using and if they want to lock it down they can do so.

>Mobile phones

Same as for wireless drivers, unmodifiable stuff should be into a place were it can't be modified by everyone: burning into hardware or storing into ROM.

Edited 2006-12-03 12:42

Reply Score: 3

pinky Member since:
2005-07-15

>So should the GPL be rewritten to disallow a specific use.

No.
Freedom 0: The freedom to run the program, for any purpose.
The GPL has never disallowed some uses and will never disallow a specific use.

The GPL has just one condition which you have to comply if you want to distribute the software: You have to give the recipient the same rights and capabilities you had.

Edited 2006-12-03 13:32

Reply Score: 4

Here's another thought.
by mkone on Sat 2nd Dec 2006 13:37 UTC
mkone
Member since:
2006-03-14

Tivo just stops selling the boxes. They make you pay a set up fee(equal to the previous sale price), and put in the contract that you cannot modify the box, which still belongs to them. So they can now use GPLv3 software, and will say they are not distributing software, because it is their box, and they can do what they like with it. So they can use the DRM thing to prevent people making adjustments to boxes, which Tivo owns.

I mean, here in the UK, Sky basically gives you a box, but they own it. So they can probably update the software at will. And they will say they are distributign the software to their boxes.

So they sidestep the whole issue, except that now they don't even have to distribute the modifications they make, because they are not technically distributing the software to anyone else. You are renting their box, and they decide what software is on it.

Edited 2006-12-02 13:39

Reply Score: 1

RE: Here's another thought.
by r_a_trip on Sun 3rd Dec 2006 21:19 UTC in reply to "Here's another thought."
r_a_trip Member since:
2005-07-06

Which is OK from a Free Software point of view. At least in this case you are not restricted with stuff you own, as you just rent the box.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Here's another thought.
by mkone on Mon 4th Dec 2006 20:59 UTC in reply to "RE: Here's another thought."
mkone Member since:
2006-03-14

In that case, it becomes rather moot really. Tivo will just find a way to circumvent the requirements completely, even when using GPLv3. And to 'add insult to injury' they could even release the source. There is no requirement that source that you distribute be able to run on some hardware. The only requirement is that if you distribute working binaries, then you must distribute the corresponding source code, and users must be able to compile and run that very version. But it quite silent on what should happen if you decide to distribute just the source code.

I think v3 is trying to do too much, and it may be ammunition for companies to just decide to stop playing nice.

Reply Score: 1

Sun is awesome
by alucinor on Sat 2nd Dec 2006 16:52 UTC
alucinor
Member since:
2006-01-06

I'm really liking Sun these days, ever since Ponytail took over. Keep up the good work!

I've never felt better about using Java.

Reply Score: 5

Sun has no reason to use GPLv3
by tomcat on Sun 3rd Dec 2006 23:03 UTC
tomcat
Member since:
2006-01-06

GPLv2.x works fine for their purposes without handcuffing it to anti-patent and anti-DRM provisions.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Sun has no reason to use GPLv3
by hal2k1 on Mon 4th Dec 2006 01:15 UTC in reply to "Sun has no reason to use GPLv3"
hal2k1 Member since:
2005-11-11

//GPLv2.x works fine for their purposes without handcuffing it to anti-patent and anti-DRM provisions.//

Anti-patent and anti-drm provisions work extremely well in the end-users best interest. End-users' best interests are best served by software with no DRM and no patents encumbering it.

Sun would be well served to offer software to end users that respected the best interests of the end users and the owners of the hardware.

That would be a strong contrasting selling point for Sun compared with some other competing offers of operating system software on the market.

OTOH, if Sun's offering were patent encumbered and DRM restricted just as some other competing offerings are, then there is no strong selling point for Sun's solution.

If Sun is able to offer a complete GPL3 Solaris/GNU/Java operating system, that solution suddenly might become very attractive compared with any and all other offerings, from the end user and hardware owner's perspective.

Reply Score: 4

tomcat Member since:
2006-01-06

Anti-patent and anti-drm provisions work extremely well in the end-users best interest. End-users' best interests are best served by software with no DRM and no patents encumbering it.

Serving end-users isn't the only consideration for Sun, though. Sun has to protect its own investments first; otherwise, there won't be a Sun Microsystems to defend for long.

Reply Score: 1