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Re: Josh Perry: Using the GPL as a Dual-Licensing Monopolistic Haven


From: amicus_curious
Subject: Re: Josh Perry: Using the GPL as a Dual-Licensing Monopolistic Haven
Date: Mon, 11 Jan 2010 11:33:08 -0500


"Alexander Terekhov" <address@hidden> wrote in message news:address@hidden
http://blogs.6bit.com/josh/2010/01/using-the-gpl-as-a-dual-licensing-monopolistic-haven/

...

The GPL, with a goal to provide software that is free-as-in-speech, has
been effectively used as a legal muzzle to strip freedom and competition
to an extent that even closed-source proprietary software would have
difficulty accomplishing.

There is a tendency on the part of GPL advocates to quietly equate GPL and FOSS itself to Linux and MySQL and sometimes Apache and PHP although the latter are not GPL licensed and would, in theory, allow for commercial, closed source, re-licensing of a derivative. Open Office has been a latecomer to this alliance as well, but then the environment becomes much more problematic.

MySQL is an anomaly in the sense that the tactics used here are not really applicable to any other product or product area. MySQL is maintained outside the application software area similarly to Linux itself. It is a commercial impossibility to offer a special version of Linux or MySQL that would be altered to favor a single application product. It would be a support nightmare. The GPL is a one-trick pony in regard to general purpose computing with an OS in terms of Linux, a database in terms of MySQL, and office automation environment with OO, with an internet presence in the form of Apache and PHP. Add Mono to the list if you are not such an anti-MS crusader as well.

But you cannot generalize product strategy or business case planning by abstracting from any of these products. They are as unique in their world as the Microsoft products they try to supplant.


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