[Top][All Lists]

[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

Re: Drop the Copyright Assignment requirement for Emacs

From: Eli Zaretskii
Subject: Re: Drop the Copyright Assignment requirement for Emacs
Date: Sat, 09 May 2020 18:24:05 +0300

> From: Philippe Vaucher <address@hidden>
> Date: Sat, 9 May 2020 16:20:55 +0200
> Cc: "Alfred M. Szmidt" <address@hidden>, emacs-devel <address@hidden>
> For me (and I suspect others) it was like this: I see something I'd
> like to change in Emacs and I want to contribute. I take the time to
> write a patch and I want to send, then I'm told I cannot send it until
> I sign these papers. This annoys me, the papers looks pretty
> fear-based and everywhere else open source I just send a patch and I'm
> done. Those other open source entities don't seem to have legal
> problems. Also it's not just something where I sign online and click
> and I'm done, I have to print, sign, scan and send by email.

Assigning the copyright for significant contributions is a basic
requirement of all main GNU projects: GCC, Binutils, glibc, GDB, Bash,
Make, Emacs, Coreutils, Grep, Guile, and many others.  It doesn't
matter whether we feel good or bad about it, it doesn't matter whether
we like it or not.  The FSF wants to protect its baby the GNU Project
against hostile litigation and infringements, and the FSF lawyers say
the assignment is necessary to be able to take the violating parties
to the court of law and have any standing there.

So it is futile to fight against this, as the FSF will not change its
position.  Please keep in mind that we don't _own_ these projects, we
just contribute to them.  We cannot dictate the project owners how to
manage their projects.  We can only fork them and maintain the fork on
our own (not that I want to encourage anyone to fork Emacs).  Or we
can sign that one-time paper.  Or we can disagree and refrain from
contributing.  But trying to change FSF's mind is a waste of breath.

> This delay my patch sending several months until finally my thirst
> of wanting this patch in is too strong and I bother with the
> assignments.

Indeed, assigning copyright only makes sense if you intend to continue
contributing in the future.  It is a one-time effort ("annoyance", if
you wish), and then you are done.

reply via email to

[Prev in Thread] Current Thread [Next in Thread]