Getting grubby with ZFS
Posted Dec 8, 2010 5:39 UTC (Wed) by ccurtis
In reply to: Getting grubby with ZFS
Parent article: Getting grubby with ZFS
This program is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the terms of the GNU General Public License as published by the Free Software Foundation; either version 2 of the License, or (at your option) any later version.
The very sentence which gives me the right to do things with the code (distribute, modify) under GPLv2 gives me the right to choose a later version if I want to. If GPLv3 gives me broader patent-oriented rights than GPLv2, are you really saying that one sentence does not allow me to claim those rights? The same sentence which allows me to claim GPLv2 rights?
IANAL (but I play one on the internets) but it seems to me that what you're implying would contradict ex post facto and "grandfathering" concepts.
If the FSF releases a GPLv4 that says "if you modify and redistribute this software, you agree to also distribute all source to all software written by you" and if you then take GPLv2+ software and redistribute it under these new terms, only you (and those who get the software from you) should be held to the new terms - not the original author.
The specifics of what GPLv2 really says versus what GPLv3 clearly says I think are immaterial to this point - you can't engage in a contract whose terms are perpetually TBD. You can only bound yourself (and those who agree) to the new terms; you can't go back and rewrite history.
This is law, not X.org.
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