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."
Thread beginning with comment 227020
To view parent comment, click here.
To read all comments associated with this story, please click here.
RE[2]: Lower the boom!
by sbergman27 on Tue 3rd Apr 2007 18:54 UTC in reply to "RE: Lower the boom!"
sbergman27
Member since:
2005-07-24

I've been observing the OSS community for 11 years. And I must say that I was puzzled by the community's initial positive response to Novell. Novell proudly proclaimed themselves as a "mixed source" company, and the the community seemed to feel that was just fine.

Flashback to a few years previous, and Ransom Love, of Caldera (who was ousted and replaced by the current management of that company that we call "The SCO Group" today), got into deep doo doo with the community simply by having the audacity to suggest that the GPL might not always be the best license for all purposes, and that in some cases BSD might be a better choice.

I guess it was Novell challenging SCO in court that kept them in such good grace for so long. But what they have done there has been purely out of self interest, and for reasons of their own.

I suppose that there really is only so much in the area of "getting it" that one can expect of a company which continues to proudly proclaim its "Mixed Source" standing.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[3]: Lower the boom!
by SReilly on Tue 3rd Apr 2007 19:14 in reply to "RE[2]: Lower the boom!"
SReilly Member since:
2006-12-28

Agreed. I too have often been surprised by whom the community picks as target for they're collective ire and must say that, to begin with, I was happy to hear about the Novell/MS deal. That is, until I started to read about the patent "small print" and consider the implications of that small print.

I still think that interoperability is very important in our, or indeed any, industry but I don't think that it's worth losing one of our greatest strengths, the community, over it.

At the end of the day, and this is something Novell has to realize, the community has done wonders to enhance interoperability without the help of anyone else.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[3]: Lower the boom!
by twenex on Tue 3rd Apr 2007 23:36 in reply to "RE[2]: Lower the boom!"
twenex Member since:
2006-04-21

I've been observing the OSS community for 11 years. And I must say that I was puzzled by the community's initial positive response to Novell. Novell proudly proclaimed themselves as a "mixed source" company, and the the community seemed to feel that was just fine.

I think Novell got a lot of Kudos from users who wanted to see YaST open-sourced. (There may be other things from SuSE that they open-sourced, too.) Strangely, afaik, that hasn't resulted in a single other distribution adopting YaST, unless of course you count openSUSE, which is a pretty pointless thing to do in this context.

Flashback to a few years previous, and Ransom Love, of Caldera (who was ousted and replaced by the current management of that company that we call "The SCO Group" today), got into deep doo doo with the community simply by having the audacity to suggest that the GPL might not always be the best license for all purposes, and that in some cases BSD might be a better choice.

The community is a lot bigger than it used to be, and also possibly a lot better at agreeing to disagree. At my LUG we have several members who still use SuSE, and if we were to reject them we would splinter our local Linux community (which is small enough as it is, though I don't think it's that small considering where it is). OTOH if I, personally, were to reject people because they still use SuSE or use open source, as opposed to free, software, or even - Gosh! prefer proprietary software - I might just as well be ejected myself for being a (now former) user of Gentoo or being a GPL "purist" or Ubuntu detractor.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[4]: Lower the boom!
by saxiyn on Wed 4th Apr 2007 01:04 in reply to "RE[3]: Lower the boom!"
saxiyn Member since:
2005-07-08

Strangely, afaik, that hasn't resulted in a single other distribution adopting YaST, unless of course you count openSUSE, which is a pretty pointless thing to do in this context.


Some people using Debian tried. They got it to compile, made all backends working, and got user admin done and posted screenshots. But YaST is *huge*. Currently the project is stopped due to lack of resource.

See http://yast4debian.alioth.debian.org/ for their works.

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[3]: Lower the boom!
by lemur2 on Wed 4th Apr 2007 03:10 in reply to "RE[2]: Lower the boom!"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

{I've been observing the OSS community for 11 years. And I must say that I was puzzled by the community's initial positive response to Novell. Novell proudly proclaimed themselves as a "mixed source" company, and the the community seemed to feel that was just fine. }

I don't have any problem at all with the notion of "mixed source". As far as I am concerned, the more people writing applications for Linux, open or closed, the better.

The only thing that Novell got wrong was to be subverted by a notion that "you have to get your open source from us".

Supplying closed source is not wrong in any way. Trying to commandeer/appropriate/usurp/seize open source (that does not belong to Novell or to Microsoft) is dead wrong, in every way.

Edited 2007-04-04 03:21

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[3]: Lower the boom!
by WarpKat on Wed 4th Apr 2007 15:19 in reply to "RE[2]: Lower the boom!"
WarpKat Member since:
2006-02-06

I don't know if you've been keeping track of recent events, but I initially didn't have a problem with Novell being a mixed source company - I still don't. As a matter of fact, that's what it takes for good projects to come together from closed source and open source camps.

What we take objection with is Novell getting into bed with Redmond with the 'best of intentions' and allowing Microsoft to start with their, "See, we told you open source infringed our IP!"

THAT is what we take objection to. It's like the school bully dating your sister 'with the best of intentions' and then kicking your butt up and down the street as he sees fit while your sister doesn't lift a finger or say a damned thing to stop it.

Novell = puppet.

Novell = SCO.

Novell = the bully's concubine.

Reply Parent Score: 1

Just one thing to keep in mind...
by IanSVT on Wed 4th Apr 2007 17:31 in reply to "RE[3]: Lower the boom!"
IanSVT Member since:
2005-07-06

I understand the issues with Novell over all of this. From a PR standpoint, they really botched this(PR needs to stop hanging out with Novell's marketing division). I'm not sure they really thought this all out, and they certainly didn't talk to the right people inside Novell and out.

Saying Novell is overtly doing this to screw Linux over and take the crown as king bastard to the Linux community from SCO is a matter of opinion. Could those tinfoil hat wearers be right? It's possible. Would Novell purposely undercut their own business to screw over some Linux users? I doubt it. The only way that could be the case is if there are real shady Gordon Gekko tactics being done by the execs.

A big contention from this is part of the community is that it gives ammo to Microsoft to generate FUD(I truly hate that term, but it fits). Other than a couple of shots from Balmer, Microsoft has been fairly quiet. Most of the uproar has been generated from the OSS community. Some of it valid and some of it pure FUD(again, vomit). There are many people here, like the Novell=SCO segment, that are doing Microsoft's job for them.

The fact of it all is, if the GPL3 does destabilize Novell's ability to distribute Linux or Linux based products, it's going to hurt Linux in the enterprise. Now if you don't care about the enterprise, it's probably a win-win. However, if you do see the value of enterprise support of Linux, customers and third party vendors will be vary wary of Linux support. That only means one thing, continued or expanded Microsoft support and dropped or no possibility of Linux support.

Outside of Novell, the biggest issue seems to be the violation of the spirit of the GPL. That lends itself to a moral dilemma. Morals and business have a tendency to fly in the face of each other. The closer Linux gets to "critical mass" and thereafter, the more you're going to see moral dilemmas, even if no 'laws' were broken.

Edited 2007-04-04 17:43

Reply Parent Score: 2