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2005/04/01 GPL, GPL 3


Some material is very old and may be incorrect today

© April 2005 Tony Lawrence

The GPL is about to have a new version. That's significant because the GPL really hasn't changed much since 1991. Not only that, but Eben Moglen, the legal counsel for the FSF, says the GPL will be changed more frequently from now on.

This is serious business: as he also said (from http://www.eweek.com/article2/0,1759,1758752,00.asp):


 "There are billions of dollars riding on this now; lots of people's
 livelihoods depend on us getting this right,"
 

Well, yeah. And other folks with billions of dollars at stake want to destroy it.

Disregarding SCO's nonsense about it all being unconstitutional and similar nonsense about opposition to copyright, the GPL has long needed work. Unfortunately, I think that project has been delayed and may continue to be obstructed by the religious fervor that some in the Linux community exhibit whenever anyone mentions any possible weakness. Those folks who think the GPL is bulletproof are foolish, and need to be reminded of those billions of dollars once again - when big money is at stake, the law is a strange, murky place. What seems obvious can be perverted into something else entirely, and it's not at all impossible that Open Source COULD come under legal challenges or even restrictions.

Therefor, attempting to make a better GPL only makes sense. The other side isn't standing still, and we can't either.


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