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Re: GNU "Moral Codes"

From: David Kastrup
Subject: Re: GNU "Moral Codes"
Date: Sat, 25 Aug 2007 10:48:21 +0200
User-agent: Gnus/5.11 (Gnus v5.11) Emacs/22.1.50 (gnu/linux)

mike3 <> writes:

> On Aug 21, 4:08 pm, David Kastrup <> wrote:
>> mike3 <> writes:
>> The GPL is not a "tit for tat" license: the upstream author gets
>> nothing from the recipient by defaul, nor does he have any right to.
>> But any further downstream recipients get all the rights the GPL
>> guarantees.  The GPL ensures that no recipient gets crippled software,
>> software which can't be serviced.  It is the software engineering
>> equivalent of placing good schematics inside of any sold appliance.
>> So the GPL is "tat for tat" rather than "tit for tat": it is not
>> reciprocal but seminal.
> Oh, so you can go and profit off of the other person's work,
> _provided_ that it stays free and GPL.

Not really.  You can keep the result all to yourself, profit from its
use, and let nobody have it.

> I was meaning trying to make it proprietary.  And was agreeing that
> that was an obvious no-no.

No, that's perfectly allowed.  What _isn't_ allowed is distribution of
versions under proprietary terms to third parties.  All the copies of
the modified work are your own physical property.  You are just not
allowed to license this to _third_ parties under terms not compatible
with the GPL.

David Kastrup, Kriemhildstr. 15, 44793 Bochum

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