For Approval: GPLv3
chris at metatrontech.com
Wed Aug 15 20:16:57 UTC 2007
I have the following concerns about the GPL v3. I dont know if these
got onto the list yet so if they did, I appologize for the repost.
The GPL v3 either violates or erodes the Open Source Definition
1) Discrimination against fields of endeavor: The anti-Tivoization
clauses effectively prohibit use of GPL v3 code in any device which
requires certification of a hardware/software bundle. Examples would
include firmware of wireless network cards, and other devices which
require such certification by the FCC.
2) The license may not be technology neutral with regard to
hardware/software bundles which must be certified by the FCC or similar
entities. In these cases, there is a distribution *requirement* that
the software is included in read-only media which is *not* subject to
I would recommend requesting that the FSF drop or revise the following
clauses before the OSI approves the license:
Section 6-- the following paragraph:
"If you convey an object code work under this section in, or with, or
specifically for use in, a User Product, and the conveying occurs as
part of a transaction in which the right of possession and use of the
User Product is transferred to the recipient in perpetuity or for a
fixed term (regardless of how the transaction is characterized), the
Corresponding Source conveyed under this section must be accompanied by
the Installation Information. But this requirement does not apply if
neither you nor any third party retains the ability to install modified
object code on the User Product (for example, the work has been
installed in ROM)."
In the alternative, I would request that the FSF clearly expand the
interpretation of the following such that hardware components which
access public airwaves (or similar networks) may also be disabled for
tampered software where required by appropriate government regulation:
"Access to a network may be denied when the modification itself
materially and adversely affects the operation of the network or
violates the rules and protocols for communication across the network."
In the absense of these, it is hard to see how the GPL v3 allows vendors
of regulated solutions which require full-package certification (of a
hardware/software bundle). This strikes me as a clear and intentional
(on the FSF's part) discrimination against a field of endeavor which is
incompatible with the OSI's Open Source Definition.
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