[Top][All Lists]

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

Re: Unibyte characters, strings, and buffers

From: David Kastrup
Subject: Re: Unibyte characters, strings, and buffers
Date: Tue, 01 Apr 2014 09:42:05 +0200
User-agent: Gnus/5.13 (Gnus v5.13) Emacs/24.4.50 (gnu/linux)

"Stephen J. Turnbull" <address@hidden> writes:

> Eli Zaretskii writes:
>  > Please show your references for that.  IANAL, but just by reading
>  > related stuff on the Internet, I arrive to the opposite conclusion.
> Hey, I'm perfectly happy to go on that kind of evidence; the projects
> I mostly work on don't require assignment and I see no need for it.
> But we're talking here about Emacs, which is extremely careful about
> these things.

Well, I remember a tense moment in XEmacs history where a major past
contributor stated that he would rescind permission to redistribute his
work in XEmacs when XEmacs was going to get relicensed under GPLv3
(I think it was GPLv3 but it may have been some other licensing change
originating at GNU Emacs).  XEmacs developers are on reasonably good
speaking terms to resolve such a conflict.  In particular if one can
point to the FSF as being the "real" guilty party and external to the

Emacs does not have that excuse.

But that's tangential: you don't just have to secure the goodwill of
important contributors.  Given the current laws, you have to secure the
goodwill of the contributors' heirs 90 years or something after their
death, people who are not even born yet.  Good luck with that.

The single biggest deficiency that corporations have over single persons
is that they are immortal.

    Nam Sibyllam quidem Cumis ego ipse oculis meis vidi in ampulla
    pendere, et cum illi pueri dicerent: Σίβυλλα τί θέλεις; respondebat
    illa: ἀποθανεῖν θέλω.

Would it have been Walt Disney's will that many of the motion pictures
of his youth are rotting away and getting irretrievably lost because the
company bearing his name is fighting against legislation allowing them
to be copied (and the costs recuperated by distribution) before they
fall apart?

What would he or other people think if they were told that the future of
our cultural heritage and the laws governing it is determined between
the two major competing power houses of Mickey Mouse and Bugs Bunny
these days?

How sad is that?

At any rate, nobody knows what his heirs will do 90 years after his
death.  But corporations don't really die, and neither do contracts.
And that gives Emacs the best shot we have not to be killed by lawyers a
hundred years from now.  Which makes it free to grow into something
else, like culture should be able to and no longer can.

Well, this mail has definitely grown into something else.

Sue me.

David Kastrup

reply via email to

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