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Re: My Favorite soapbox : XML linkage (was Re: [DotGNU]Jabber-thon)

From: Barry Fitzgerald
Subject: Re: My Favorite soapbox : XML linkage (was Re: [DotGNU]Jabber-thon)
Date: Sun, 09 Jun 2002 14:35:30 -0400

Norbert Bollow wrote:
> This is true.  In the world of webservices, copyleft is somewhat
> less effective than in the pre-webservices world.  This is a
> direct consequence of copyleft being based on copyright law.
> Webservice protocols give more freedoms for combining parts, that
> are (from a legal perspective) different "works", into a
> functional whole.  This means that the overall effects of
> copyright law are getting weaker.  We're concerned about this
> because it makes copyleft weaker, but we should look at this in
> the broader context of this really weakening all kinds of
> software monopolies.  Copyleft is a kind of monopoly to some
> code, but a monopoly which is not held by an individual or
> company, but by the whole community of free software users.
> That's why it's a good monopoly, not an evil monoply like those
> of Microsoft Corp.  However Microsoft's monopolies are weakened
> also.  The vision of the DotGNU project is that instead of
> trying to fight against the wind of this weakening of copyright
> law, we sail with this wind and use it to destroy the effective
> desktop OS monopoly which is currently held by Microsoft Corp.

There's also a difference between distributing a software piece and
distributing it's output.

XML-RPC/SOAP only really distributes the output of that chunk of code. 
If company A modified the code and published it via there server - then
that's fine.  That's internal use.

If company A then tried to distribute the software for use to other
entities, the GNU GPL would come fully into effect.

In that way, the GNU GPL is not entirely useless at all and the idea of
making XML-RPC output linking is not enitrely black and white... it's a
very grey subject.

And also not one that's easy to deal with legally without messing up
Freedom 0 (the right to free usage).


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