Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 7th Feb 2006 23:54 UTC, submitted by sean batten
GNU, GPL, Open Source "Linus Torvalds doesn't want to change the Linux kernel's software license, and he said so again last week. For good measure this time, he threw in some inflammatory remarks. "I literally feel," wrote Torvalds, "that we do not, as software developers, have the moral right to enforce our rules on hardware manufacturers. We are not crusaders, trying to force people to bow to our superior God." Since the crusades were a foreign adventure responsible for the deaths of tens of thousands, that's not the most diplomatic response, and FSF counsel Eben Moglen refused to be drawn into retaliation when we contacted him for comment."
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Cheap shots
by moleskine on Wed 8th Feb 2006 00:20 UTC
moleskine
Member since:
2005-11-05

It's not much of an article, and the personal criticism of LT is too cheap and unpleasant to be worth taking seriously. Besides, my understanding is that the present wording of the GPLv3 is a draft up for discussion. From the FSF's own website:

The first draft of the revised GNU General Public License has been released for comment.

Isn't this clear?. LT doesn't need to justify himself. He is free to say whatever he wants about the GPLv3, just like anyone else. The folks who need to justify themselves are the ones who are attacking LT because he hasn't instantly agreed to every word in a draft document that will be up for intense debate for many months.

In addition, the talk about morality is pretty sick-making. I resent being told that by running Linux I have signed up for the moral superiority club. I can't think of anything more awful.

Over the next few weeks/months, I think it will start to sink in that the FSF's proposals to reject DRM totally are over the top. The FSF needs support and so does Linux. If the FSF succeeds in alienating a lot of people including a lot of *nix businesses then it will end up marginalized, which is no contribution to any kind of debate. Perhaps in this regard LT has a better understanding of the realities than some of his "colleagues" who apparently can't handle the news that LT has a mind of his own and is nobody's puppet.

Edited 2006-02-08 00:22

Reply Score: 5

RE: Cheap shots
by skeezix on Wed 8th Feb 2006 04:11 in reply to "Cheap shots"
skeezix Member since:
2006-02-06

In addition, the talk about morality is pretty sick-making. I resent being told that by running Linux I have signed up for the moral superiority club. I can't think of anything more awful.

Bringing up issues of ethics and ideology doesn't necessarily mean someone is trying to be elitist. Through our whole lives we're faced with questions of whether something is bad, neutral, good, or great. Now, I will concede that people do pull issues into the moral arena just so they can feel better than others (and this especially happens with FSF-type folks), but I don't think moral questions should be completely anathema.

Personally, I think the moral debate around intellectual property, especially software, is exciting and intriguing. In fact, this was one of the things that drew me to open-source software in the first place. And I think there's lots of room for debate: this isn't an issue that has no room for questioning like murder, theft, or rape; this is just software. So let's have fun prognosticating, and keep in mind that we may not have all the answers, so that we avoid the 'moral superiority club' mentality.

Reply Parent Score: 1