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Re: Please explain the FSF copyright assignment thing

From: Filipe Silva
Subject: Re: Please explain the FSF copyright assignment thing
Date: Thu, 13 Jul 2017 15:06:33 -0300

That's terrible. I see the point now. This should be explained in more instances.

That's really not obvious for the legally inapt. 

But tell me, how exactly could a berserk past author of a package do legally to make things nasty? What legal maneuver would he use to exert prejudice against FSF or the free software community if the software is in GPLv3?

that gives me the impression that GPLv3 does not protect as much as I believed. 

On Jul 13, 2017 14:50, "Óscar Fuentes" <address@hidden> wrote:
Filipe Silva <address@hidden> writes:

This is not the correct forum for this matters, but anyway...

> With the recent activity regarding RMS wishing that someone would come up
> and write a replacement for magit that could be bundled inside emacs, and
> give FSF the whole copyright assignment, I cannot help but be intrigued:
> what good do these required copyright assignments do to the free software
> community?

Only the copyright holder can effectively exert the associated legal rights.

> I really, really tried to understand but cannot. It's hard enough for a
> community to be graced with the luck of having someone as Jonas Bernoulli
> write the magit package, give away de code as GPLv3, and actually maintain
> it through years.

Jonas is the current lead maintaner of Magit. Before him there were
other maintainers. And even before was Marius Vollmer, who is the
original author and who deserves all the credit about the UI design
ideas that makes Magit great.

> Now you have to also sign physical papers handing the
> copyright to the FSF. that makes the process so much difficult. What's the
> gain?
> So what if the copyright belongs to someone else. Isn't this free software?
> gplv3? don't you have the four liberties?
> Enlighten me, please.

If Emacs distributes work which are not legally assigned to the FSF and
some author of that work goes berserk, things can turn *very* nasty, on
the legal aspect. It happened on the past.

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