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Re: Microsoft needs a help strategy

From: amicus_curious
Subject: Re: Microsoft needs a help strategy
Date: Wed, 28 Jan 2009 20:12:28 -0500

"ZnU" <znu@fake.invalid> wrote in message">
In article <4980a453$0$21838$>,
"amicus_curious" <> wrote:

"David Kastrup" <> wrote in message

> The recipient of GPLed software is free to declare the GPL void and
> revert to default copyright rules.
What is at issue today, though, is the nature of such "default copyright
rules". If there is no fee charged to use the work or to redistribute the work, the copyright can be ignored unless the author can show some degree of
harm to himself.

If we're talking about Party A redistributing Party B's unmodified GPL'd
work without making the source available, this may be true. But this is
trivial, since the source is available to anyone who wants it in this
instance from Party B. If a court found against the GPL in a case along
these lines, nothing substantial would change.

If we're talking about Party A modifying Party B's GPL'd work and
redistributing the modified software without making the source
available, it seems fairly clear that Party B *has* been harmed in this

First off, that has not yet occurred in the SFLC lawsuits. They all turn, so far, on a company using some tiny Linux and BusyBox utilities on a single purpose device. There is nothing new to disclose, just one more mirror of some version of BusyBox.

But if there ever were anything like that, it is not so clear that Party B is harmed. If Party B has no expectation of any gain financially, then there can be no harm if he doesn't get any. If the only benefit is some form of publicity or such, that has to be evaluated. Other third parties may not benefit if the change is not disclosed, but they are not authors and so harm to them is inconsequential to the issue.

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