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Re: Copyright Misuse Doctrine in Apple v. Psystar

From: Alan Mackenzie
Subject: Re: Copyright Misuse Doctrine in Apple v. Psystar
Date: Mon, 23 Feb 2009 18:52:01 +0000 (UTC)
User-agent: tin/1.6.2-20030910 ("Pabbay") (UNIX) (FreeBSD/4.11-RELEASE (i386))

In gnu.misc.discuss amicus_curious <> wrote:

We are keeping you busy today, aren't we?  ;-)

> My point is not that the data might be useful if it were available, and
> it is, but that the totality of those taking advantage of knowing is
> zero or close to it.

In proportion to the number who could, yes.  Just like the proportion of
googlers who actually click on the ads, or the proportion Usenet postings
on a big server, or of sad cases who actually respond to email spam, is
vanishingly small.  That's not a good argument for not posting source

In absolute numbers, probably quite a lot - a few tens, or a few hundreds
- of people read the source.  Who knows?

> In any case just disclosing the version of BusyBox incorporated into
> the device is sufficient.  They do not have to publish the entire code
> tree to achieve that.

They do.  Without them publishing the source, how would you even know
which programs it contains, never mind the versions?  And how could you
be sure that version 1.1.16 in the router was actually identical to
1.1.16 on the BusyBox site?   

Try looking at the source for SuSE or RedHat Linux sometime.  These
distributors routinely change the source for the packages they install.

Alan Mackenzie (Nuremberg, Germany).

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