Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 31st Aug 2007 19:24 UTC, submitted by Anonymous
FreeBSD The latest issue of the FreeBSD newsletter contains a letter from the Vice President of the FreeBSD Foundation about the GPLv3. "On June 29th, the Free Software Foundation unveiled version 3 of the GNU General Public license. Even though the majority of software included in the FreeBSD distribution is not covered by any version of the GPL, our community cannot ignore this very popular license or its most recent incarnation. Through extremely successful evangelization, and the popularity of Linux, the misconception that OpenSource and the GPL are synonymous has become pervasive."
Thread beginning with comment 267626
To view parent comment, click here.
To read all comments associated with this story, please click here.
RE[2]: Elmer FUD
by ulib on Sat 1st Sep 2007 07:52 UTC in reply to "RE: Elmer FUD"
ulib
Member since:
2005-07-07

The invisible hand of the market will protect user freedom. Does anyone still believe this?

*raises hand*

The more free market, the more freedom. All the efforts to "protect" here and there, to "restrict" here and there, are just making things worse.
Efforts that are actually productive are the ones made in a radically different direction, that is, ensuring the market is really free - it's not me saying this, and not even Adam Smith and Milton Friedman: it's history.

Real freedom (to borrow our own Oliver's language) is a paradox. Real freedom requires real choice. However, real freedom allows distributors to eliminate real choice. Therefore, the closest we can get to real freedom is to impose just enough restrictions to protect real choice.

Strongly disagree. The closest we can get to real freedom is to *avoid imposing further restrictions*.
I can understand when a vendor imposes restrictions - WTH, it's *their* stuff, let them do whatever they want; if I don't have a use for it, I don't buy it. If they piss off their users, let them hammer their own testicles.
OTOH, I can't understand when open source software comes with restrictions.

Suppose a professional developer sees a GPL software and has a great idea about making a significant improvement, that would cost him a lot of time but that some users would be ready to pay big bucks for.
Since the software base is GPL, the developer couldn't do it without giving away the code for free - and this means that in most cases it wouldn't do it.

I see no winners here, and two losers: the developer, and the users.

And I can't see *why* they should be losers when they could be winners, if only the software base would have published with a BSD license instead of a GPL.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[3]: Elmer FUD
by renox on Sat 1st Sep 2007 08:33 in reply to "RE[2]: Elmer FUD"
renox Member since:
2005-07-06

>>The invisible hand of the market will protect user freedom. Does anyone still believe this?
>*raises hand*

And how far did you have to dig to bury your head in the sand to ignore the Microsoft's monopoly?

Somehow apparently the market didn't prevent Microsoft from gaining a monopoly, that's not a first, that's why they are anti-trust law (which failed in Microsoft's case)..

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[4]: Elmer FUD
by ulib on Sat 1st Sep 2007 09:07 in reply to "RE[3]: Elmer FUD"
ulib Member since:
2005-07-07

And how far did you have to dig to bury your head in the sand to ignore the Microsoft's monopoly?

Microsoft monopoly is one reason why one would expect people to try to make the market *more* free.

Instead, I see just the opposite: people bitching against free market, calling voluntary trade "enslavement", and calling the removal of choice "freedom".

Reply Parent Score: 4

RE[4]: Elmer FUD
by Almafeta on Sat 1st Sep 2007 16:30 in reply to "RE[3]: Elmer FUD"
Almafeta Member since:
2007-02-22

And how far did you have to dig to bury your head in the sand to ignore the Microsoft's monopoly?

Somehow apparently the market didn't prevent Microsoft from gaining a monopoly, that's not a first, that's why they are anti-trust law (which failed in Microsoft's case).


While we're getting rid of silly terms, let's ban this one, at least in this context: monopoly.

A monopoly is defined as one company so controlling the market that:

1) nobody else can start a business;

2) nobody else can profit.

Since Microsoft has come into play, dozens of companies have entered the field -- even if you take out all the Linux repackagers.

As to profit -- it's very easy to overlook that Microsoft is the second richest OS company on the planet. IBM, a Linux repackager, is 15th in the Fortune 500, with $91 billion in revenues each year. Microsoft is 49th, with $44 billion. And that's not counting the various companies who have stakes in OSS and free software, such as Dell and Hewett-Packard. (And the GPL isn't the only way to get quick wealth -- BSD-based corporation Google is #293 and rising meteorically.)

Even 'struggling' OS companies such as Red Hat, Canonical, and Linspire are pocketing between $10 million and $1 billion each year. I don't know about you, but if I can go from nothing to making over $10 million a quarter in just a few years, then I would consider my business a success. If I was ethically unburdened and started packaging GPL and BSD software in the same way they have, I too could be a millionaire by the end of the year.

Microsoft has a majority, definately. But not a monopoly. They do not control the market, and they do not prevent other companies from becoming almost overnight millionaires. If they were a monopoly, we would not be talking about alternate operating systems. On the contrary -- the time has never been better to get into the operating system business.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[3]: Elmer FUD
by wirespot on Sat 1st Sep 2007 18:36 in reply to "RE[2]: Elmer FUD"
wirespot Member since:
2006-06-21

The more free market, the more freedom. All the efforts to "protect" here and there, to "restrict" here and there, are just making things worse.


By that logic, let's abolish all laws. Let's see how free you're going to feel without police to guarantee you can walk around safely, government protecting you from bad business practices and so on.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[4]: Elmer FUD
by dylansmrjones on Sun 2nd Sep 2007 13:39 in reply to "RE[3]: Elmer FUD"
dylansmrjones Member since:
2005-10-02

Police doesn't help. Police is basically a mistake. They tend to do nothing and care more about speed tickets (they give nice profit) than actual crimes.

If you want to live safely - defend yourself. You have that right.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[3]: Elmer FUD
by TheBadger on Wed 5th Sep 2007 21:03 in reply to "RE[2]: Elmer FUD"
TheBadger Member since:
2005-11-14

Since the software base is GPL, the developer couldn't do it without giving away the code for free - and this means that in most cases it wouldn't do it.


Bzzt! Read the GPL FAQ: the developer only has to offer the code to people receiving the binaries. They can charge as much money as they want for the binaries, but must then offer the source code.

Of course, charge $50 for some "neat" software and then some user might ask for the sources, then upload them to the Internet. But really, the developer should be looking at ways to entice people to pay them for the binaries, either because it's more convenient for most users, or perhaps because as the originator or reputable developer of the software, they're seen as the more reliable source of enhancements.

On that latter aspect of competing suppliers of mostly the same code, compare and contrast the fortunes of Red Hat against Oracle, who were supposedly going to muscle in on Red Hat's enterprise customers. Have they all defected to Oracle? Sometimes it's the service that matters most.

Reply Parent Score: 1