Re: [dev] arrow in the knee because of the GNU GPL???

From: Alexander Huemer <>
Date: Wed, 25 Jun 2014 20:18:05 +0200

On Wed, Jun 25, 2014 at 01:52:14PM -0400, Calvin Morrison wrote:
> >> If you craft your words enough, and trick people enough, then they
> >> will believe it is free, while being coerced into helping the 'greater
> >> good'
> >
> > The 'greater good' isn't a good but a bad thing in your opinion?
> It's a great thing in my opinion, but coercion isn't really a good way
> to achieve those ends. Voluntaryism is much more powerful than the use
> of force
> >> Free should mean anyone can take my code and do what they please with
> >> it.
> >
> > Again that's your very personal opinion. Please don't try do define what
> > 'free' should mean for other people.
> "Free - not under the control or in the power of another; able to act
> or be done as one wishes." There is nothing free about the GPL
> codebase.

Yes, there is something 'free' about the GPL codebase, whether you like
that or not. 'Free' as in you are free to look at the source code to be
able to understand how it works. In contrast to the BSD license the GPL
enforced that it stays that way. Otherwise some greedy person can take
the work of individuals who donated their work to the general public,
make modifications and nobody but them selfs profits.
I like a lot of BSD licensed software and really agree with the
underlaying mindset. I just don't get the GPL bashing.

> It's a vendor lock in just as is Mac or Windows. you build
> your platform on it, and eventually you'll need to make some code
> changes, and there you are forced to stick with linux and contribute
> back.

That's simply not true. If you develop some software _on_ Linux it easy
to switch to any other UNIXlike system. Where is there a vendor lock in
that would not exist on a BSD system?

> and there you are forced to stick with linux

Why is that? That problem does not arise in the moment you want to make
changes to the underlying system. If you choose a platform for
developing software, make sure to understand the license.
The Linux kernel gives you the _chance_ to verify, understand and
improve the kernel, nobody forces you to. There is no communism here.

> and there you are forced to […] contribute back.

I don't see the bad thing here, sorry. If you do not like to contribute,
why even bother with FLOSS like systems? Go buy a Windows license.

> >> Somewhat free is usually like, they can do whatever they want, but
> >> leave my name on it.
> >
> > That's not the definition of 'free', but of the BSD software license.
> I said somewhat free, and yes i was referring mostly too bsd here,
> they also have several other clauses as well though
> >> GNU Free is, sure you can use it, but you need to contribute back any
> >> changes you make or else.
> >
> > Obviously you don't like that thought very much.
> > I'd like to state that nobody is forced or coerced into using or further
> > developing GPL licensed software.
> the codebase isn't free, it comes with a lot of baggage, like you just said
> This really in my mind relates to how modern day socialists compare to
> libertarians. Positive vs Negative rights. You say everyone is 'free'
> but really it's only if they agree to the very specific conditions
> which you setup in the license.

The license is very clear and primarily states what you _may_ do with
the code. If you want to bash software 'vendors' for their licensing go
knock on the door of Microsoft and Apple.

> In the same way providing positive rights to people, like the right to
> housing or healthcare is conditional on their agreement to the
> conditions of the society that they were forced into.

That's the main difference. Nobody forces or coerces you into using GPL
licensed software. That in stark contrast to the healthcare system of
the nation you life in.

I'll end with some purposely bold words:

        If communism was like the GPL, it would have worked out

Kind regards,
Received on Wed Jun 25 2014 - 20:18:05 CEST

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