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Re: Patches for module/ice-9/occam-channel.scm

From: Mark H Weaver
Subject: Re: Patches for module/ice-9/occam-channel.scm
Date: Tue, 15 May 2012 18:37:05 -0400
User-agent: Gnus/5.13 (Gnus v5.13) Emacs/24.0.92 (gnu/linux)

Noah Lavine <address@hidden> writes:
> Since these are relatively large changes, you'll also need to do a
> copyright assignment. We assign the copyright on Guile to the Free
> Software Foundation because under US law, the owner of a copyrighted
> work is sometimes the only person with the power to sue over
> violations of copyright. The FSF wants to be able to sue if people
> violate the GPL, so we assign copyright.

I'd just like to add that suing is a last resort and extremely rare,
only done when companies use our software and blatantly refuse to give
their users the rights that are guaranteed to _all_ users by the GPL.

The policy of the FSF regarding GPL violations was explained well by
Eben Moglen: <>

   When I went to work for Richard Stallman in 1993, he said to me at
   the first instruction over enforcing the GPL, "I have a rule.  You
   must never let a request for damages interfere with a settlement for
   compliance."  I thought about that for a moment and I decided that
   that instruction meant that I could begin every telephone
   conversation with a violator of the GPL with magic words: We don't
   want money.  When I spoke those words, life got simpler.  The next
   thing I said was, We don't want publicity.  The third thing I said
   was, We want compliance.  We won't settle for anything less than
   compliance, and that's all we want.  Now I will show you how to make
   that ice in the wintertime.  And so they gave me compliance.  Which
   had been defined mutually as ice in the wintertime.

Unfortunately, there are many corporations that will violate the GPL
without remorse unless we have the _ability_ to sue them.

> Please see for more
> information, or email address@hidden to fill out a form.

I should also mention that I'm _extremely_ allergic to legalese, and can
literally count on one hand the number of agreements I have signed in
the last decade, but the FSF legalese I was asked to sign was
refreshingly fair and reasonable.


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