MySQL license and revolution

Richard Gaskin ambassador at
Fri Sep 5 19:08:03 EDT 2003

revolution at wrote:

> I don't believe he [Stallman] is contradictory.  His position is quite subtle.

Section 2.b of the GPL sez:

   You must cause any work that you distribute or publish,
   that in whole or in part contains or is derived from
   the Program or any part thereof, to be licensed as a
   whole at no charge to all third parties under the
   terms of this License.

The widely held interpretation of this is that you can indeed sell your
program for any price you like, provided you also give it away for free
under the GPL.

Even if no one makes a GPL-governed derivative work, your source is required
to be publicly available "at no charge to all third parties", with nothing
between you and Johnny Cochran to ensure that your algorithms, data
structures, and processes (potentially patentable but beyond the scope of
copyright protection) are not used to your disadvantage.

With articles at titled "Why Software Should Not Have Owners",
Stallman may too subtle for many of us.  I'll accept that I just may not
have the intellectual capacity to follow all of his logic.

Even so, he seems like a generally amiable fellow and he would be welcome in
my home any time.  What great dinner conversation that would be....

 Richard Gaskin 
 Fourth World Media Corporation
 Ambassador at
 Tel: 323-225-3717                       AIM: FourthWorldInc

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