Get ready....

R. L. Kleeberger rlk at
Thu Apr 15 03:50:44 UTC 1999

Quoting Derek J. Balling (dredd at
> At 11:29 PM 4/14/99 -0400, R. L. Kleeberger wrote:
> >There is no reason anymore.  I was still unsure whether the GNU GPL was able
> >to be legally modified into another license.  It seems it is legal,
> According to the license it is not. According to the instructions at the
> top, the license may be copied verbatim, but it may NOT be altered.
> Since excerption can be defined in terms of alteration, you cannot even
> excerpt 90% of it (with 9% being the part you don't want, and 1% being the
> title) since that's an alteration of both omission and change.

Yes.  I would very much like for someone with legal experience who is
familiar with the GPL to step in so we can come to a conclusion on the
legality of copying/modifying the GNU GPL.  We have conflicting posts, and I
can't proceed until this is cleared up.

> >therefore I don't have much of a buttress accept a philosophical one.  And
> >this list is ot for philosophical discussion.
> Agreed, and we have to clearly define the direction we want to go. I think
> that licenses should be able to be copied in whole or part, which the
> current GPL explicitly forbid.

I will have to think on this.  I am an extremely strong proponent of the GNU
GPL, and would like to see all open source licenses created to be GPL
compatible.  On the other hand, I believe a developer should have the
freedom to create a license to fit his needs(with his user's freedoms in mind).

> >> >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?
> >> You probably would also support random search and seizure of peoples'
> >> homes, since it is better to sacrifice the individual's freedom for the
> >> benefit of the people at large. 
> >No, I do not.
> Your argument would support that. Can you define what makes the cases
> different? Philosophically they are identical as far as I can tell.

No, they are not identical.  Random search and seizures violate the freedoms
of the public at large, not just one individual.  Preserving the freedoms of
the public at large by sacrificing the freedom of one individual does not.

> I think a discussion like this should be out in the open. If the list-owner
> wants to deem it off-topic, I'm sure that they'll say something (unless
> you're the list-owner *grin*)

Can the list-owner comment?  There is nothing I hate more that off-topic threads.

rlk at
"Sworn word may strengthen the quaking heart"--Gimli LotR Book 2

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