An org's commitment lasts longer than any individual
Posted Dec 23, 2012 14:26 UTC (Sun) by bkuhn
In reply to: GnuTLS, copyright assignment, and GNU project governance
Parent article: GnuTLS, copyright assignment, and GNU project governance
Hugo Roy, it seems you've intentionally left out at least one key reason why assignment helps protect copyleft stronger. Specifically, when the assignment is made to an organization committed to defending software freedom, the it can uphold copyleft in perpetuity.
I've been doing GPL enforcement for 15 years. (Hugo, I'm not sure how long you've been doing enforcement — or even if you have at all — so maybe you just haven't been around long enough to see this point.) I know that it's extremely rare to find a copyright holder like Erik Andersen, who cares so deeply about copyleft he wants to be involved with enforcement actions for decades. This kind of commitment by an individual for a task as boring as GPL enforcement comes along but once in a generation.
Meanwhile, an organization that cares about software freedom can live on, and new staff can come in when the prior staff burns out (this happens a lot in non-profits), and keep going to uphold software freedom.
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