Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 24th Mar 2009 18:02 UTC, submitted by google_ninja
GNU, GPL, Open Source Eric S. Raymond is one of the three big figures in open source, together with Linus Torvalds and Richard Stallman. During a talk for the Long Island Linux User Group, he made some interesting statements about the GPL, namely that the GPL is no longer needed due to the way the open source movement works.
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RE: Abolishing Misunderstandings
by sbenitezb on Tue 24th Mar 2009 21:19 UTC in reply to "Abolishing Misunderstandings"
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Users need and deserve freedom. Someone must defend these freedoms, this is why we need the GPL license.

Aha, except the GPL protects the code, not the users of it. Your argument is flawed. If you have software A which is licensed under any license bar GPL like, some company "steals" the code to "close" it and make money of it, tell me, how the hell are you, as a user, less free? The code is still there, not like it vanished after being downloaded by company X to make money of it. You can already and will be able to download, study, modify, run the code without problems at all. It really doesn't matter if a billion companies around the world take the code and use it, as long as you can do it too.

The freedom you are talking about is not your freedom, is the freedom of something material, not of an individual. GPL accounts only for the code, not the programmer or the users. Look carefully: it tells you what you can do with the code, but also what you can't. It's in there, you can't modify it and redistribute the compiled code without also making the changes public. So in fact, you are being restricted, as a user of the code, you are actually, take this, less free.

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