Closing the GPL loophole: it doesn't define 'free software'.
Posted Feb 14, 2006 16:21 UTC (Tue) by ibukanov
In reply to: Closing the GPL loophole: it doesn't define 'free software'.
Parent article: FSF: GPLv3 Update #2
> In the same position (but IANAL, nor am I RMS for that matter) I would have gone further, to the extent of disallowing distribution of copylefted programs on ROM or translation into hard-wired circuitry.
You do need this to close this read-only GPL-ed software loophole. One can just require that for a reasonable price a user of a box with free software should be able to get the same box with modified code.
I.e. if a manufacturer sells boxes with ROM-only free-software, then he should either provide an option to get a ROM chip replacement that the user can put in the box for the price of chip+postage+small fee for ROM burning. Or, if ROM chip can not be replaced, then the manufacturer should provide another box with the modified software for the price of another box+postage+small service fee.
With such requirement one do not even need to explicitly mention boxes that only boots signed code. In this case manufacturer would have to either provide keys or allow me to upload the code to some website to get a signed version back.
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