Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 3rd Apr 2007 17:13 UTC, submitted by davidiwharper
Novell and Ximian "The Free Software Foundation has published a third draft of the GPL3 license. The FSF had indicated leading up to this draft that it would be addressing some concerns it had with the Novell-Microsoft agreements in the draft. Here's Novell's position on the new draft."
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My comment for Novell
by JoeBuck on Tue 3rd Apr 2007 18:27 UTC
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I posted the following comment on the linked-to article, but it still says "waiting for moderation" so I will post it here as well.


Bruce, I agree that you guys arenít SCO; Novell employees, particularly those coming from SUSE and Ximian, have made extensive contributions. A lot of good guys work for you.

Nevertheless, the ink wasnít dry on your agreement before Microsoft was crowing that you had acknowledged that this was a surrender, that you had acknowledged that all GNU and Linux users owe Microsoft money from their patents, and the only safe way to proceed was to abandon all independent open source development and get your Linux only from Novell. It seems that the least you can do is fight hard to counter Microsoftís rhetoric: if their assertions about your agreement are correct, then Richard Stallmanís efforts to rein you in with GPLv3 are simply a matter of survival.

Yes, Iím sure that you were thinking, in part, that this deal would make customers more comfortable with adopting Linux. But I fear that you were also thinking that this deal would frighten customers away from Red Hat and have them choose Novell instead. But the relationship between Red Hat and Novell doesnít resemble the cutthroat competition you see in other industries: you rely on code that they develop, and they rely on code that you develop, and the only payment that you make to each other is your code. If that code, from you, comes with strings, youíre reneging on the deal. If you succeed in frightening independent open source developers away, since they are not under your patent shield, your own R&D efforts will become much more expensive, because youíll have to pay everyone. This is not a game that you want to win.

Microsoft hopes to help you undermine Red Hat and make Linux look more like proprietary software, with one source of development and control, namely Novell. After that, they are confident that they can crush you. Thatís how they work.

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