[Top][All Lists]

[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

Re: Lawyer's evaluation

From: Kim F. Storm
Subject: Re: Lawyer's evaluation
Date: 24 Sep 2003 11:10:52 +0200
User-agent: Gnus/5.09 (Gnus v5.9.0) Emacs/21.3.50

Miles Bader <address@hidden> writes:

> "Stephen J. Turnbull" <address@hidden> writes:
> >
> > "The following General Public License states and protects additional
> > rights, the rights that constitute true software freedom, that you
> > possess."
> > 
> > OR
> > 
> > "The following General Public License states and protects additional
> > rights, the rights that make GNU Emacs truly free software, that you
> > possess."
> No, those miss the point entirely.
>   `Emacs is Free Software'


What about combining things like this:


Emacs is Free Software, developed by the GNU project, and protected
by the Free Software Foundation.

Emacs is released under the General Public License (GPL) which states
and protects additional rights that you possess, the rights that
constitute true software freedom and ensure that GNU Emacs is, and
always will be, truly free software.


"Free" means that all users have the freedom to study, share, change
and improve Emacs.  In fact, you may freely use and modify Emacs for
your own purposes without knowing any of the details of the GPL.

However, once you distribute your changes to others, you should be
aware that the conditions and rights in the GPL will extend to cover
your changes as well, so before doing so, you are strongly advised to
read the license.

Also, if you write and distribute an extension to Emacs in Emacs Lisp
(the extension language used by Emacs), that extension will be covered
by the GPL too, as running such an extension requires "linking" with


Once Emacs is started, you can read the General Public License by
typing C-h C-c, or via the "Copying Conditions" item on the Help menu.


 [I appreciate software freedom] [I don't, but let me use Emacs anyway]

If a user can manage to read the first two paragraphs, they might be
tempted to

If they don't read the next two paragraphs, at
least they cannot claim that they weren't warned :-)

Of course, if they don't care to read anything at all, there's
nothing we can do anyway to educate them :-(

Is there a better wording than "protected by" in the first paragraph?

I remember there was some discussion on the subject of the fourth
paragraph (distributing proprietary Emacs Lisp packages) some time
ago.  I don't see that this is stated very clearly in the GPL, so I
think it's a good thing to mention it "up front".  The wording could
be refined of course.

> I.e. establish the term `Free Software' as a category.  Names are
> important.  Muttering on about `true software freedom' and `truly free
> software' seems to simply try and avoid doing this (not to mention
> risking flamewars from BSD fans :-).
> -Miles
> -- 
> `Cars give people wonderful freedom and increase their opportunities.
>  But they also destroy the environment, to an extent so drastic that
>  they kill all social life' (from _A Pattern Language_)
> _______________________________________________
> Emacs-devel mailing list
> address@hidden
> http://mail.gnu.org/mailman/listinfo/emacs-devel

Kim F. Storm <address@hidden> http://www.cua.dk

reply via email to

[Prev in Thread] Current Thread [Next in Thread]