Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 28th Mar 2007 21:02 UTC, submitted by Ali Davoodifar
GNU, GPL, Open Source The FSF has released the third draft of the revised third version of the GNU General Public License. Some of the changes in the new draft, such as the increased clarification and legal language, or the housekeeping changes that reflect new aspects of the license are likely to be accepted. However, the license also includes a new approach to the controversial issue of lock-down technologies as well as more explicit language about patents, including language designed to prevent a re-occurrence of agreements such as the one that Novell entered into with Microsoft - all of which is apt to kindle heated debate as the revision process enters its final stages after fifteen months of intensive work.
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Patent objections
by npang on Thu 29th Mar 2007 00:21 UTC
npang
Member since:
2006-11-26

After spending some time reading the new draft, it is my unlearned opinion that it still does not satisfy HP's objection to the patent provisions of the second draft of GPLv3. I believe that people still won't be allowed to assert their patent rights under patent law if the distributor conveys a copy of a GPLv3 licensed software. I believe that this would discourage companies to choosing GPLv3 as a license. If my interpretation of the patent section of this new draft is incorrect, I encourage you to enlighten me.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Patent objections
by butters on Thu 29th Mar 2007 06:57 in reply to "Patent objections"
butters Member since:
2005-07-08

I believe they addressed HP's concerns in the second draft. The first draft basically said that a distributor couldn't assert their patent claims on distributors of downstream modifications. The second and third drafts say that they cannot assert their patent claims on the code that they distributed in downstream modifications.

So, if HP distributes "AC", Debian distributes "ABC", and Ubuntu distributes "AB", then HP can sue both Debian and Ubuntu if B infringes their IP. But they have waived their right to make patent claims on A or C. If IP in A shows up in Sun's original work Z, then they can sue Sun. Basically, if you distribute it under the GPLv3, then any IP in that code is fair game in that code. But the use of that IP in other code is actionable, and so is the addition of any IP in modifications.

At least that was my interpretation. IANAL, and I am frequently proven wrong.

Reply Parent Score: 5