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Re: [DotGNU]Licence question about GNU and GCC

From: David Sugar
Subject: Re: [DotGNU]Licence question about GNU and GCC
Date: Tue, 12 Mar 2002 07:44:51 -0500
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Of course, there are other issues to consider here. Traditionally in free software (and specifically GNU) I do not believe we have expressed any opinion of how a given "work" is "used", other than to say that the work itself and any derivitive works must be free, and the GPL provides an instrument thru copyright law to achieve this. That a free software "work" might itself be used under a proprietary platform, or even in conjunction with wholy seperate "proprietary" work is not an issue we could directly control thru copyright law, nor nessisarly do I believe even should. Of course, if one creates a "service", made of "works", some free and some not, this is both an ethical and legal question. Copyright law itself does not provide a satisfactory remedy since it will not recognize any granularity above or below the concept of a "work". What you suggest here would depend on traditional commercial contract law and licensing to achieve, and that is both weeker than copyright and subject to local interpretations. On an ethical respect, do we really wish to assert how a specific given work is "used"? To do so is essentially tempering with so called "freedom 0", which is often where proprietary vendors that desire control will of course go first.

James Michael DuPont wrote:


I had a crazy idea :

Lets say that you want to create a GNU only webservice, that can only be accessed from other GNU software.
This is really the question of security, lets say that
the licence says that you can only use it via a secure
interface and you are not free to remove it.

Then the secure interface only allows connections from
registered GNU software under the same licence!

That would allow you to disallow the usage of the
software via the network from non-free software, once
you are on the machine, the normal linkage rules

What do you think?


James Michael DuPont

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