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Villa: Pushing back against licensing and the permission culture

Villa: Pushing back against licensing and the permission culture

Posted Jan 30, 2013 18:35 UTC (Wed) by nybble41 (subscriber, #55106)
In reply to: Villa: Pushing back against licensing and the permission culture by tjc
Parent article: Villa: Pushing back against licensing and the permission culture

> Ownership of property is a Natural Right. Property includes intangible entities such as software.

Ownership of a good consists of the right to consume it, to use it up. As such, ownership only comes into play when someone else consumes your property. The exclusivity of this right is merely a side-effect of scarcity: two people cannot both consume the same scarce good. Intangibles are not scarce and cannot be consumed, ergo ownership does not apply.

The rights to restitution and retribution which permit the enforcement of natural property rights are justified only on the basis that they are a response in kind to damage caused to your own property. This is why property is called a natural right: one cannot usurp anothers' property rights without providing the justification for a response in kind. There is no justification for seeking restitution or retribution simply because someone /benefited/ from your work while causing no harm to you.


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Villa: Pushing back against licensing and the permission culture

Posted Jan 31, 2013 13:24 UTC (Thu) by etienne (guest, #25256) [Link]

> because someone /benefited/ from your work while causing no harm to you.

Harm to you is present when someone force you to pay to use the software you have written yourself (because of some technical reasons you cannot recompile your own source), and when a big company "embrace and extend" your own software in closed source and you have to work to stay compatible, even when the additions are not useful.

Villa: Pushing back against licensing and the permission culture

Posted Jan 31, 2013 15:44 UTC (Thu) by nybble41 (subscriber, #55106) [Link]

You have an amazingly broad interpretation of "harm". It seems to consist of making up things which others own you, for no rational reason I can see, and then reading any failure to provide you with what you want for free as "harm".

Others are under no obligation to give you back a copy of software you've written, in source or binary form, just because you were so careless as to misplace it or the means of compiling it. Others are under no obligation to make it easy for you to duplicate /their/ work in developing extensions to your software.

While there are many ways to define "harm", the justifiable responses to "harm" are restricted to those proportional to the offense. Even if one granted that "embrace-and-extend" harms the original author of the software, injunctions, fines, and the like are well outside the limits of proportional response.


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