Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 9th May 2011 21:46 UTC
Apple Apple has released the source code for WebKit in iOS 4.3, which it had been withholding for eight weeks. However, according yo Jay 'saurik' Freeman, they are still not, and never have been, in compliance with the LGPL. "Apple's provided source code (which /is/ heavily modified for the iPhone) [...] isn't even complete enough to compile (it is missing a bunch of code for the WAK* classes), so Apple has simply never been in compliance with this license," Saurik writes. So, it would seem that Apple is still violating the LGPL, and has been doing so for a very long time. Funny how this never makes it to mainstream technology sites. I guess they find their pre-release review devices more important.
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court?
by project_2501 on Mon 9th May 2011 21:56 UTC
project_2501
Member since:
2006-03-20

Surely someone can take them to court if they really are breaking the law?

Reply Score: 2

RE: court?
by orestes on Mon 9th May 2011 22:20 UTC in reply to "court?"
orestes Member since:
2005-07-06

The copyright holders could sue sure, and waste large amounts of money and time in the process. Possibly even set the exact opposite precedent of what they want in the bargain.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: court?
by JAlexoid on Tue 10th May 2011 00:22 UTC in reply to "RE: court?"
JAlexoid Member since:
2009-05-19

The copyright holders could sue sure, and waste large amounts of money and time in the process. Possibly even set the exact opposite precedent of what they want in the bargain.


Hm... Does Apple have official branches in EU countries with Civil Legal system?

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: court?
by collinm on Tue 10th May 2011 11:34 UTC in reply to "RE: court?"
collinm Member since:
2005-07-15

just make bad pub about apple in tv, magasine to break their image could be a idea

Reply Score: 2

RE: court?
by ctwise on Mon 9th May 2011 22:41 UTC in reply to "court?"
ctwise Member since:
2007-02-28

Good idea. Those leeches at Apple should really get it stuck to them. After profiting from the KHTML codebase, the least they could have done is given back code to the community. I mean, WebKit isn't nearly enough payback for the original KHTML code. Turning KHTML into a usable, modern, fast, standards-compliant browser that Google and others could base off of, isn't nearly enough. Evil Apple.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: court?
by l3v1 on Tue 10th May 2011 07:17 UTC in reply to "RE: court?"
l3v1 Member since:
2005-07-06

Very funny. Let me put it plain and simple: comply with license rules. Following or breaking rules should be judged by how sympathetic they are to some people? Come on.

Reply Score: 4

RE[3]: court?
by _xmv on Tue 10th May 2011 09:30 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: court?"
_xmv Member since:
2008-12-09

Very funny. Let me put it plain and simple: comply with license rules. Following or breaking rules should be judged by how sympathetic they are to some people? Come on.


Unfortunately this seems to be the rule for most people. Tells quite a bit.

Reply Score: 3

Or Not
by Carewolf on Mon 9th May 2011 22:25 UTC
Carewolf
Member since:
2005-09-08

This is getting silly. I love messing with the heads of Apple's fanhoes as much as anybody, but I have to defend Apple here, this is a non-story.

That fact that the shipped tar-balls does not compile does prove they are violating the LGPL.

When talking about WebCore I see nothing missing. What appears to be a problem here is that the iOS version doesn't ship with platform- or application-bindings.

Being LGPL the library is allowed to link to closed source binaries, so is it allowed to link to unpublished APIs?? - I don't know. It would probably be against GPLv3, but LGPLv2?? I am not a lawyer, but I don't think so.

To be honest, I haven't even noticed the source should have been delayed, it is all there in Git, and has been there the whole time. As long back as two months ago I based some of my work on changes Apple made for iOS 4.3.

Reply Score: 7

RE: Or Not
by Bill Shooter of Bul on Mon 9th May 2011 22:33 UTC in reply to "Or Not"
Bill Shooter of Bul Member since:
2006-07-14

Yeah, a one paragraph description isn't quite enough for me to say 100% with out a doubt that Apple's in violation.

I understand that ovbiously closed source binaries can link to a LGPL licensed library. But is the inverse true? I don't think it is.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Or Not
by JAlexoid on Tue 10th May 2011 00:26 UTC in reply to "RE: Or Not"
JAlexoid Member since:
2009-05-19

Yeah, a one paragraph description isn't quite enough for me to say 100% with out a doubt that Apple's in violation.

I understand that ovbiously closed source binaries can link to a LGPL licensed library. But is the inverse true? I don't think it is.


Yeah both LGPL and GPL code can link to closed source software. But resulting binaries are not distributable without breaking (L)GPL.
That is how nVidia drivers work - the glue-code is GPL, the binary blob is proprietary licensed, the resulting kernel module is is not distributable.

Reply Score: 5

RE[3]: Or Not
by Bill Shooter of Bul on Tue 10th May 2011 16:47 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Or Not"
Bill Shooter of Bul Member since:
2006-07-14

Right. So even if there is some glue code between webkit and IOS, Apple is still distributing the resulting work. So they are violating the LGPL, right?

Reply Score: 2

RE: Or Not
by _xmv on Mon 9th May 2011 23:28 UTC in reply to "Or Not"
_xmv Member since:
2008-12-09

You don't need to be a lawyer to read the GPLv2, v3 and LGPL licenses. They're very simple.
Then you'll see that making such difference betweenv2 and v3 is non-sense.

10min of your life to read. Think about it. You'll appear smarter next time you talk about it ;-)

Specially you wanna read this
LGPLV2:

For an executable, the required form of the "work that uses the Library" must include any data and utility programs needed for reproducing the executable from it.

Edited 2011-05-09 23:30 UTC

Reply Score: 5

RE[2]: Or Not
by Carewolf on Tue 10th May 2011 11:46 UTC in reply to "RE: Or Not"
Carewolf Member since:
2005-09-08

A library is not an executable.

Add to that, that WebKit might not be compilable to iOS, but I have no problem compiling and using it on Linux, including the iOS 4.3 changes.

Reply Score: 1

Yeah sure
by leos on Mon 9th May 2011 22:33 UTC
leos
Member since:
2005-09-21

Funny how this never makes it to mainstream technology sites. I guess they find their pre-release review devices more important.

Yeah, you know, aside from that little website called Slashdot: http://apple.slashdot.org/story/11/05/09/1552213/Apple-Delays-Relea...

Reply Score: 3

RE: Yeah sure
by Thom_Holwerda on Mon 9th May 2011 22:54 UTC in reply to "Yeah sure"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

Since when is Slashdot mainstream and a review site? Slashdot is for geeks.

I'm talking of the Engadgets etc. of this world.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Yeah sure
by arougthopher on Tue 10th May 2011 00:25 UTC in reply to "RE: Yeah sure"
arougthopher Member since:
2005-07-06

Since when is this mainstream news? It was reported on OS News ... doesn't go mainstream until the lawyers get involved, otherwise, no one else outside of our little geeky community really cares.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Yeah sure
by MacMan on Tue 10th May 2011 05:10 UTC in reply to "RE: Yeah sure"
MacMan Member since:
2006-11-19

Since when is Slashdot mainstream and a review site? Slashdot is for geeks..


Since when do any non-geeks give a toss about LGPL source code compliance?

Reply Score: 5

RE[3]: Yeah sure
by Bill Shooter of Bul on Tue 10th May 2011 16:49 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Yeah sure"
Bill Shooter of Bul Member since:
2006-07-14

Since when do any non-geeks even know what LGPL is?

Reply Score: 2

Just relax
by Elv13 on Mon 9th May 2011 22:39 UTC
Elv13
Member since:
2006-06-12

They made WebKit, its 1000x better than the previous yearly code drop that were merged in KHTML before 2006. Apple is usually nice when it come to source code, much more than MS. They have been less and less recently, but who ever used Darwin + X11 as an OS?

They are not nice right now, right but trolling wont help. Sueing and winning against apple will just make things worst, they will sue even more people. It's Apple! Not Oracle or Microsoft. They don't invest in OSS to kill it. They usually do to spread technology (GC, Avahi/ZeroConf/Bonjour/mDNSresponder, CPUS, GCC, FreeBSD (manual backports), ZFS and many more). Even if it don't always end up well and open, I think they do a good job, overall. Remember than WebKit is mostly Apple code. They don't -have- to commit it, they own the copyright, if they want to make WebKit on iOS propriatary fine, they own it. It's ok as all code not owned by them is still available, and it is.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Just relax
by metalf8801 on Mon 9th May 2011 23:02 UTC in reply to "Just relax"
metalf8801 Member since:
2010-03-22

Oracle does just as much work on open source projects as Apple so do you think they should also be aloud to violate the LGPL?
http://oss.oracle.com/

Reply Score: 2

RE: Just relax
by JAlexoid on Tue 10th May 2011 00:31 UTC in reply to "Just relax"
JAlexoid Member since:
2009-05-19

They made WebKit, its 1000x better than the previous yearly code drop that were merged in KHTML before 2006. Apple is usually nice when it come to source code, much more than MS. They have been less and less recently, but who ever used Darwin + X11 as an OS?

They are not nice right now, right but trolling wont help. Sueing and winning against apple will just make things worst, they will sue even more people. It's Apple! Not Oracle or Microsoft. They don't invest in OSS to kill it. They usually do to spread technology (GC, Avahi/ZeroConf/Bonjour/mDNSresponder, CPUS, GCC, FreeBSD (manual backports), ZFS and many more). Even if it don't always end up well and open, I think they do a good job, overall. Remember than WebKit is mostly Apple code. They don't -have- to commit it, they own the copyright, if they want to make WebKit on iOS propriatary fine, they own it. It's ok as all code not owned by them is still available, and it is.


ZFS? You do understand that ZFS is now Oracle's tech?
If WebKit is mostly their code, then they should just find the code that is not theirs and replace it with their own code and be done with the requirement to release any code whatsoever.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Just relax
by Elv13 on Tue 10th May 2011 02:06 UTC in reply to "RE: Just relax"
Elv13 Member since:
2006-06-12

Apple tried to make ZFS more widespread and adopt it in OSX until Oracle bought Sun and said no. That was OpenSource and more than just a copy of Solaris code.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Just relax
by Laurence on Tue 10th May 2011 07:21 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Just relax"
Laurence Member since:
2007-03-26

Apple tried to make ZFS more widespread and adopt it in OSX until Oracle bought Sun and said no. That was OpenSource and more than just a copy of Solaris code.


Yeah, but Apple didn't contribute anything to ZFS so it's not proving the OSS-friendly point you're trying to make.

Reply Score: 3

You mean be apathetic (was RE: Just relax)
by tanishaj on Tue 10th May 2011 01:33 UTC in reply to "Just relax"
tanishaj Member since:
2010-12-22

Even if it don't always end up well and open, I think they do a good job, overall. Remember than WebKit is mostly Apple code. They don't -have- to commit it, they own the copyright, if they want to make WebKit on iOS propriatary fine, they own it. It's ok as all code not owned by them is still available, and it is.


It is great that you appreciate their work and that you do not begrudge them their actions but your opinion does not change the facts:

With the LGPL it is not simply enough that all code not owned by them is still available. What you are talking about is the BSD/MIT/X11 style licenses. That may be your preference (I am heading that way) but the license obligations laid down by the original code authors (of KHTML) hold legal and ethical weight. You do not have the personal authority to just waive that away.

"They don't -have- to commit it, they own the copyright...". Well, that is unless they want to distribute their code integrated with code written by other people under the LGPL. Since they do want to, they do in fact have to release (commit) their code. Anything else is distribution in violation of their license which means copyright violation.

I do not actually know but I would be extremely surprised if "most" of the WebKit code was authored by Apple. For one thing, WebKit is also the rendering engine used in Google Chrome. It is also the basis for a bunch of other browsers. Is Apple really carrying all those guys or are they contributing?

If there really is only a small amount of non-Apple code, I would expect them to simply replace that code and move on. The fact that they have not suggests that you are incorrect about the proportions.

Reply Score: 3

Elv13 Member since:
2006-06-12

Apple is doing much of the work to this day. Chrome have V8 and some commits and it's about it. Nokia have almost none, KDE and Gnome mostly try to port work rather than creating more.

If you read the licence, you don't have to supply all code as long as it is not required to make the application work. You can link LGPLed code to proprietary code, as they probably do.

"5. A program that contains no derivative of any portion of the Library, but is designed to work with the Library by being compiled or linked with it, is called a "work that uses the Library". Such a work, in isolation, is not a derivative work of the Library, and therefore falls outside the scope of this License. "

2. d) If a facility in the modified Library refers to a function or a table of data to be supplied by an application program that uses the facility, other than as an argument passed when the facility is invoked, then you must make a good faith effort to ensure that, in the event an application does not supply such function or table, the facility still operates, and performs whatever part of its purpose remains meaningful"

"6. As an exception to the Sections above, you may also combine or link a "work that uses the Library" with the Library to produce a work containing portions of the Library, and distribute that work under terms of your choice, provided that the terms permit modification of the work for the customer's own use and reverse engineering for debugging such modifications. "

So they -can- ship WebKit with some classes missing, as long as they are dynamically linked. They are not changing the licence of code that they don't own. They do own, so they can licence it at will in both direction. It can use the LGPL code and can be used by the LGPL code as long as its a separate .so

Reply Score: 5

spiderman Member since:
2008-10-23

I don't totally agree with that. Webkit is a library. If they implement a class that interprets or transport web code, they are actually extending the webkit library, and not merely using it, therefore their code must be LGPL'ed.

Anyway, even if that was legal, do you realize why Oracle is criticized so much? Oracle didn't do anything illegal. They are criticized for not commiting enough. When it's Oracle, they are bashed and they deserve it. When it's Apple, don't tell me they have the right to do it. That's double standard and that does not sound right.

Reply Score: 3

cmchittom Member since:
2011-03-18

Anyway, even if that was legal, do you realize why Oracle is criticized so much? Oracle didn't do anything illegal. They are criticized for not commiting enough. When it's Oracle, they are bashed and they deserve it. When it's Apple, don't tell me they have the right to do it. That's double standard and that does not sound right.


You're right about the double standard. But you're wrong about Oracle deserving bashing. They comply with the appropriate licenses. That is all—legally, morally, and ethically—that can be, or should be, expected of them, or of any other corporation, organization, or individual.

Even allowing for the sake of argument that Apple is or was in violation of the LGPL, why do you even care? Are you a copyright holder for part of WebKit? Did not having that source code harm you in some way?

Reply Score: 1

Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

Even allowing for the sake of argument that Apple is or was in violation of the LGPL, why do you even care? Are you a copyright holder for part of WebKit? Did not having that source code harm you in some way?


That's like asking "Why do you care about the disaster in Japan? Were you there? Do you have family there? Did it harm you in any way?"

In other words, a nonsensical question. Open source licenses MUST be respected, and violations MUST be brought to light. If not, it'll open the door for widespread profiteering from corporations and other entities.

Reply Score: 1

cmchittom Member since:
2011-03-18

"Even allowing for the sake of argument that Apple is or was in violation of the LGPL, why do you even care? Are you a copyright holder for part of WebKit? Did not having that source code harm you in some way?


That's like asking "Why do you care about the disaster in Japan? Were you there? Do you have family there? Did it harm you in any way?"
"

What? Let me get this straight: you're equating massive loss of life, the displacement of tens (hundreds?) of thousands of people, the uncontrolled release of radiation into the environment...with not having the source code for the web browser on your phone. Maybe you should take a walk to clear your head and get some perspective.

Reply Score: 2

Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

Analogy. Learn what it means, kid.

What it doesn't mean is this: equation.

Edited 2011-05-10 15:01 UTC

Reply Score: 1

spiderman Member since:
2008-10-23


You're right about the double standard. But you're wrong about Oracle deserving bashing. They comply with the appropriate licenses. That is all—legally, morally, and ethically—that can be, or should be, expected of them, or of any other corporation, organization, or individual.
Obviously we do not have the same moral standard but at least yours is consistent.

Even allowing for the sake of argument that Apple is or was in violation of the LGPL, why do you even care? Are you a copyright holder for part of WebKit? Did not having that source code harm you in some way?

Yes, I am definitely harmed. Not so much as a developer as of now, although I could hit a wall in the future because of that but as a user, I am definitely harmed. Not having the source code available means some software won't be developed, other software won't interoperate, etc. This code would definitely be useful to someone to create software and I am deprived of this software.

Reply Score: 2

cmchittom Member since:
2011-03-18

Yes, I am definitely harmed. Not so much as a developer as of now, although I could hit a wall in the future because of that....


It seems to me that here you are conflating harm with not receiving a benefit.

...but as a user, I am definitely harmed. Not having the source code available means some software won't be developed, other software won't interoperate, etc.


This is speculation. It may possibly be correct speculation, but it's still speculation; and speculation doesn't show harm.

This code would definitely be useful to someone to create software and I am deprived of this software.


I'm sure it would be useful. But again, here in my view you haven't been harmed—you just haven't received any benefit. Like I said to Thom, I think we're all in agreement that if Apple (or anybody) is in violation of a license, then they should remedy that violation immediately. But even if they are, or were, in violation, as a third party—again, in my opinion—you haven't been harmed; you just haven't received a benefit.

Reply Score: 1

spiderman Member since:
2008-10-23

You are right, they are not harming. They just don't provide benefits. My moral values are a little different than yours though. To me, this is still not acceptable. Apple rides on the work of a lot of people. They monopolize a large amount of resources. It does not cost them to release the code to the public. They can give that back to us for zero cost. At least they can explain why they don't want to open the code. It costs nothing. I believe they owe that to us.

Edited 2011-05-10 19:09 UTC

Reply Score: 3

Alfman Member since:
2011-01-28

cmchittom,

"Even allowing for the sake of argument that Apple is or was in violation of the LGPL, why do you even care? Are you a copyright holder for part of WebKit? Did not having that source code harm you in some way?"


This shows that you have no idea what (L)GPL is actually about.

In fact, even end users are harmed when apple violates licenses. Many end users do benefit from having access to the source code. It doesn't matter if they are a minority or not, the copyright holders entitled them to it when they published code under the LGPL.

Apple is not entitled to withhold their source code changes while distributing the object code. If apple disregards their obligations, end users who depended on having access to the source code (and are entitled to it), are undeniably harmed.

Legally speaking, it'd probably be difficult for anyone other than the original copyright holders to take action against apple for any violation.

It makes for an interesting question, what if an open source owner died before transferring ownership? Could non-copyright holding end users legally coerce a company to distribute their modifications to the code as required by the license? Or is the company legally sheltered from fulfilling it's open source obligations because the copyright holders are gone?

Edited 2011-05-10 18:50 UTC

Reply Score: 1

cmchittom Member since:
2011-03-18

In this comment, I offer what are effectively opinions on law. I am not a lawyer in any jurisdiction. Do not construe the following as legal advice. If I am wrong about some fact, I welcome correction with the appropriate citation.

In fact, even end users are harmed when apple violates licenses. Many end users do benefit from having access to the source code. It doesn't matter if they are a minority or not, the copyright holders entitled them to it when they published code under the LGPL.


As I've told others, if Apple is in violation of the license they should fix the violation by releasing source code as appropriate—that is (I hope!) uncontroversial. That is the legal issue, and it is pretty straightforward.

But I repeat: even if Apple is in violation, how are end users harmed? Even assuming that released source code is a benefit that end users want, not receiving a benefit is not, per se, harm. So tell me: if I buy an iPhone and use it, how am I harmed by not having the source code to WebKit? This is not a rhetorical question. Please answer, because it's become apparent to me that either I am missing some reasoning somewhere, or else other people aren't being rational.

Apple is not entitled to withhold their source code changes while distributing the object code.


Says you. Apple says differently, apparently. I don't know who's right; that's why we have judges.

If apple disregards their obligations, end users who depended on having access to the source code (and are entitled to it), are undeniably harmed.


But end users, by definition, don't depend on access to source code. Source code is useful only to developers.

It makes for an interesting question, what if an open source owner died before transferring ownership? Could non-copyright holding end users legally coerce a company to distribute their modifications to the code as required by the license? Or is the company legally sheltered from fulfilling it's open source obligations because the copyright holders are gone?


Actually, this is a boring question because it's easily answered. At no point is the copyright holder ever "gone." When people die they transfer all their assets, including held copyrights, either in accordance with a will or other instrument, or in accordance with local law. Either way, it's pretty clear-cut, from what I understand: whoever inherits would then hold the copyright, just like the original owner. That person would then have standing to go after license violations. End users never have standing to go after license violations.

Reply Score: 1

Alfman Member since:
2011-01-28

cmchittom,

"But I repeat: even if Apple is in violation, how are end users harmed? Even assuming that released source code is a benefit that end users want, not receiving a benefit is not, per se, harm."

I don't know the details of what apple is withholding, or whether there is in fact a violation. If there is, then we can agree that apple should be held accountable for it.

Never the less, if apple is in violation, your logic is absolutely wrong that it doesn't hurt end users. Not understanding this implies that you don't understand how the LGPL is designed to protect end users as well as the developers.


"So tell me: if I buy an iPhone and use it, how am I harmed by not having the source code to WebKit?"

It disturbs me greatly to hear the claim that GPL violations don't harm any end users.

"But end users, by definition, don't depend on access to source code. Source code is useful only to developers. "


By definition???? Many of us "end users" are developers and/or homebrew users.


Users wanting to patch & recompile, or even just inspect the source code are prevented from doing so because of apple's (alleged) infringement. A developer's reasons are technically irrelevant to this discussion, but could include security enhancements, new customized features, code review to make sure apple's not hiding back doors, incorporation into other projects, homebrew development, etc.

While you dismiss source code rights nonchalantly, many of us are harmed by not having access to the source which we are in fact entitled to.



"Actually, this is a boring question because it's easily answered. At no point is the copyright holder ever 'gone.' When people die they transfer all their assets, including held copyrights, either in accordance with a will or other instrument, or in accordance with local law."


I appreciate your infinite wisdom, but you didn't give the question the due consideration that it required.

I specifically mentioned the copyright holder dying before they've had the opportunity to set a successor. If there are no decedents to inherit the rights, then what happens? Does the state take ownership? The state can't revoke outstanding GPL licenses, but it's not under any obligation to enforce it either. If the state owns it, conceivably the code could become public domain, in which case companies have an easy out for avoiding their GPL obligations.



"From my perspective, Apple does, as you say ride on the work of a lot of people. But those people all agreed to have their work be used in accordance with the license they chose."

Re-read your posts, you suggest that even if apple is in violation, it doesn't harm users... on a site like this those words could be considered trolling.

Reply Score: 1

molnarcs Member since:
2005-09-10

Google has more commiters to webkit than Apple. http://trac.webkit.org/wiki/WebKit%2520Team&btnG=Search" rel="nofollow">http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?hl=en&q=cache:http://t...

Reply Score: 2

RE: Just relax
by spiderman on Tue 10th May 2011 05:59 UTC in reply to "Just relax"
spiderman Member since:
2008-10-23

Aside the fact that Oracle releases much more open source code than Apple, you can not justify how Apple behaves by pointing fingers at Microsoft anymore. It's not 1985. You can as well point fingers at Ossama ben laden or Saddam Hussein to make the point that Apple is way better. Why not compare Apple to Red Hat instead?
The fact is that Apple sucks for not releasing the iOS code. It does not bring value to them. We can duplicate their code. Why do they insist on closing it? I sympatize with the guy who complained. He probably got stuck on a bug, tried to fix it and realized he can't because Apple decided not to release the code for no valid reason. You are not Apple PR, let them explain themselves. I for one am waiting for Apple to explain why they do not release the damn code open.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Just relax
by Laurence on Tue 10th May 2011 07:24 UTC in reply to "Just relax"
Laurence Member since:
2007-03-26

Remember than WebKit is mostly Apple code. They don't -have- to commit it, they own the copyright, if they want to make WebKit on iOS propriatary fine, they own it.

They *DID* have to. WebKit was a KHTML fork which was licensed as LGPL which dictates that the code must be available.

Apple weren't being nice, they were fulfilling a legal obligation.

Edited 2011-05-10 07:24 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE: Just relax
by Thom_Holwerda on Tue 10th May 2011 07:33 UTC in reply to "Just relax"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

Remember than WebKit is mostly Apple code.


Even if this were true (I think that by now esp. Google have probably contributed a pretty big portion as well, aside from RIM, Nokia, Palm, etc. etc.) - so what? That doesn't give them the right to violate the open source license of the code they built WebKit on top of. You don't have to defend Apple like it's a frightened little puppy - they're a big-boy corporation now, and like everybody else, they must play by the rules. If they don't like the rules, they shouldn't be using LGPL code. As simple as that.

For now, Apple is in violation of the LGPL, but apparently, we all have to be super extra special nice to Apple because... I don't know, why, exactly? Can you imagine if Microsoft made the same violation? The internet would be in an uproar!

But not with Apple, because as usual, its fanbase is the most hypocritical, two-faced bunch of apologists.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Just relax
by Elv13 on Tue 10th May 2011 21:11 UTC in reply to "RE: Just relax"
Elv13 Member since:
2006-06-12

I don't think they violate any license here.

-They own the code in question
-They have the legal right to change the license of the code they own, this is part of the copyright -law-
-The code probably in a separated .so, dynamically linked to WebKit and provide non essentials functions to WebKit. As such, this code is not affected by the license as long as it is not mixed with code written by -a third party- without legal authorization to change the license.

By such, they can, legally, distribute that code without giving back the sources as long as they provide the last version of the code released under the terms of the LGPL in their VCS, and they do.

If it was the -GPL- this would much harder because eery single contribution -in the entire project- would need to be explicitly relicensed by the copyright owner of this particular code. But not the LGPL, as the license is viral only in statically linked parts of the code (individual .so).

Sorry folks, but I am quite sure it's how it work. Apple is not in violation if they own every single bit of the unreleased code.

Edited 2011-05-10 21:11 UTC

Reply Score: 1

RE: Just relax
by molnarcs on Tue 10th May 2011 07:43 UTC in reply to "Just relax"
molnarcs Member since:
2005-09-10

"They made WebKit"

Hah ;)

http://www.osnews.com/thread?472230

Reply Score: 1

RE: Just relax
by _xmv on Tue 10th May 2011 09:26 UTC in reply to "Just relax"
_xmv Member since:
2008-12-09

you're writing "if they want to infrige GPL, fine, the code is theirs! hey its Apple its ok!"

are you out of your mind?
if you modify Apple's stuff do you think they'll let you claim it yours and even make money on it?
what a joke

Reply Score: 2

Troll???
by arougthopher on Tue 10th May 2011 00:22 UTC
arougthopher
Member since:
2005-07-06

Why can we mark comments as "Troll", but we can't mark the actual articles that way?

I'll probably get marked for being off topic here as well, but, that "article" was written in a way to do nothing more than to get people riled up. Some of the other comments here highlighted sections of the LGPL that might have been violated (or might not have been ... innocent until proven guilty et al). If the copyright holders have an issue, then they should talk to Apple. However, this "article" did not mention anything about what section of the GPL was violated, where the problem was, if other had the same problem, or anything else! Just some more FUD, with no substance.

Not sure if this is really news or not? Hence, I want the ability to flag so called "articles" as "Troll (-1)"

Reply Score: 2

RE: Troll???
by JAlexoid on Tue 10th May 2011 00:33 UTC in reply to "Troll???"
JAlexoid Member since:
2009-05-19

Why can we mark comments as "Troll", but we can't mark the actual articles that way?

I'll probably get marked for being off topic here as well, but, that "article" was written in a way to do nothing more than to get people riled up. Some of the other comments here highlighted sections of the LGPL that might have been violated (or might not have been ... innocent until proven guilty et al). If the copyright holders have an issue, then they should talk to Apple. However, this "article" did not mention anything about what section of the GPL was violated, where the problem was, if other had the same problem, or anything else! Just some more FUD, with no substance.

Not sure if this is really news or not? Hence, I want the ability to flag so called "articles" as "Troll (-1)"



You do understand that the whole idea of (L)GPL is that it applies downstream also. Not only the copyright holder has rights, but the user also.

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: Troll???
by MacMan on Tue 10th May 2011 05:23 UTC in reply to "RE: Troll???"
MacMan Member since:
2006-11-19

that "article" was written in a way to do nothing more than to get people riled up.


The "article" is related to Apple, and written by Thom, were you expecting something different?

Reply Score: 2

Umm ... what?
by kristoph on Tue 10th May 2011 07:28 UTC
kristoph
Member since:
2006-01-01

So a random dude writes a 2 line post on hacker news and this becomes the basis for an 8 line tirade based on 0 actual fact.

Honestly.

Anyway, not only is Apple under no obligation to ensure you can build the library their in no way obligated to even release source when they create a combined work as long as they ...

"Give prominent notice with the combined library that part of it is a work based on the Library, and explaining where to find the accompanying uncombined form of the same work"

]{

Reply Score: 1

RE: Umm ... what?
by Thom_Holwerda on Tue 10th May 2011 07:35 UTC in reply to "Umm ... what?"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

Anyway, not only is Apple under no obligation to ensure you can build the library their in no way obligated to even release source when they create a combined work as long as they ...


Yeah how about you go back and read the LGPL, kid.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Umm ... what?
by henderson101 on Tue 10th May 2011 10:53 UTC in reply to "RE: Umm ... what?"
henderson101 Member since:
2006-05-30

"Anyway, not only is Apple under no obligation to ensure you can build the library their in no way obligated to even release source when they create a combined work as long as they ...


Yeah how about you go back and read the LGPL, kid.
"

Apple are under the obligation to provide enough source and where applicable object code to compile the code. What they are NOT obligated to do is supply the source code for the proprietary sections that they only provide as object code. If they didn't supply the object code, they are indeed in LGPL violation.

Reply Score: 2

Available today
by Lennie on Tue 10th May 2011 07:45 UTC
Lennie
Member since:
2007-09-22

http://opensource.apple.com/release/ios-43/

( from the first comment on the lwn.net article: http://lwn.net/Articles/442082/ )

EDIT: I also found the 'announcement':
http://lists.apple.com/archives/darwin-dev/2011/May/msg00016.html

Edited 2011-05-10 07:46 UTC

Reply Score: 2

Perspective
by henderson101 on Tue 10th May 2011 10:48 UTC
henderson101
Member since:
2006-05-30

Firstly - why is this a side article when the previous story made the main page?

Secondly - perspective... I'm not going to apologise for either Google or Apple, but let's put this in perspective: Apple does not have an open mobile OS. I can't build my own image (legally) and I can't really get much of the OS source code. This is a completely transparent situation - Apple have never allowed this and have made it clear that this is the way they want to play the game. On the other hand, Google has always called their mobile OS "open". I can rebuild the OS from source. Except, the source was missing. That is pretty bad.

So, on a scale of "you aren't supposed to be able to do that" to "go wild", Google are far more "bad" than Apple on this one.

Really, if you had the source for the iOS 4.3 build of WebKit, what would you do with it? Really? I guess some people might hack it in to something useful, but as plenty of other mobile browsers exist without using this source (Nokia's, RIM's, Google's) - what advantage does it give?

Finally - this needs to be taken in to account, also:

http://www.bgr.com/2011/05/09/internal-emails-from-google-manager-s...

I await the accusations Thom will level at me, because obviously I am an Apple fanboy and not standing on the sidelines with a big cynical pile of "no story here" on both the Apple vs Google open source blood war.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Perspective
by Thom_Holwerda on Tue 10th May 2011 11:54 UTC in reply to "Perspective"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

A lot of words, but it don't change shit. You MUST comply by the licenses of the code you're (re)distributing. Google is complying. Apple is not.

There isn't more to it.


----

However, as I have said on numerous occasions, despite Google complying with the licenses, I am NOT happy with them withholding Honeycomb's code. Apple's actions, however, are far worse: they are actively and wilfully NOT complying with the LGPL right now, and have, in the past, NOT complied with the GPL (iOS 4.1's code being withheld for six months).

Reply Score: 1

RE: Perspective
by spiderman on Tue 10th May 2011 13:27 UTC in reply to "Perspective"
spiderman Member since:
2008-10-23

Wait a minute, this is not about Apple vs Google, is it? I uderstood it was about Apple violating a license.
Anyway, being clear about being opaque does not mean you are transparent. You got tricked there. When they openly say that they are closed, it means they are closed, not open. Don't be confused. iOS is closed.

Reply Score: 2