For Approval: GPLv3

Chris Travers chris at
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 
vendor updates.

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.

Best Wishes,
Chris Travers
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