Get ready....

R. L. Kleeberger rlk at
Thu Apr 15 03:09:32 UTC 1999

Quoting Derek J. Balling (dredd at
> >I think this is a bad thing.  If this idea were to be put in place it would
> >have the potential to harm and restrict someone's freedoms. 
> >
> >For instance I could copy some freedom(s) from the GPL but not others.  I
> >could give my users the freedom to distribute but restrict there freedom by
> >not letting them modify it.  
> Isn't this your right as a developer? To release your code under whatever
> license you see fit? What I'm suggesting is offering developers the option
> of looking at licenses that "almost" match their needs, and allowing them
> to modify them to fit their needs.
> Yes, this allows people to alter the license. It also allows you to use
> diff as your friend to find the additions/removals/alterations from the
> "previous" license.

Yes, the right to license your program as you see fit is your right.  

> >The only way this idea would not restrict freedoms is to say "You may copy
> >specific wordings from this license, but in addition to your excerpt you
> >must also include the rest of the freedom's in accordance to the GNU GPL in
> >your own form.  No freedoms listed in the GNU GPL can be ommited."
> I disagree. The GPL is NOT the be-all-end-all. To believe otherwise is to
> seriously underestimate the requirements of the commercial world.

I was commenting on the suggestion that a developer should be able to take
excerpts from the GNU GPL and place them word for word into his own
license.  I do not know if this is already legally possible, but if it is
not, I would think it not such a great idea unless all the freedoms of the
GNU GPL were preserved in the created license.

> If the GPL was the end-all-be-all, then the GPL itself would be released in
> a GPL-like manner. As you'll notice, it isn't. It's a copyrighted document
> with the phrase:
> " Everyone is permitted to copy and distribute verbatim copies
>  of this license document, but changing it is not allowed. "
> Where's your freedom there?

This is a necessary evil, I believe, to preserve the end users' freedoms.

> The only true freedom you have is choice -- the choice of not using
> software if you cannot abide by its license agreement, or developing your
> own application using the license of your choice to compete with the
> offending product.

But, which is the lesser crime.  To damage an sacrifice an individual's
freedom for the benefit of the people at large?  Or to sacrifice the
people's freedom in benefit of the individual?

rlk at
"Pi keeps going on forever...
kind of like that bunny."--Chris Heidt

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