Examining an attack on the GPL
Posted Nov 25, 2003 14:48 UTC (Tue) by vblum
In reply to: Examining an attack on the GPL
Parent article: Examining an attack on the GPL
Err ... white flag. I am almost ready to declare defeat, and do so here re: also the remainder of my comments in this thread.
I guess what I am trying to say is this:
I can perfectly see how a lawyer could read the GPL to be intended to force you to open your infringing code after the fact. Pars 2b, 6, together with 5 allow a lawyer to construe such an argument before a court with great ease. Whether it holds up is another matter, but the wording (esp of par. 5) sounds as if it were preparing the ground for such an outcome.
Most legal professionals are not Eben Moglen; most of them probably even believe in the legality/enforceability of "click-to-accept" after-purchase shrink-wrap licenses, after all; and if need be, they would probably even sue on behalf of a GPL client to force someone else to open their code, either; as long as it pays.
My conclusion from all this is that if the GPL _does not_ intend to force anyone to open up infringing code after the fact (which it evidently does not, I know!), it should best say so explicitly; that would immediately end confusion such as the above press-release.
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