I apologize for the long post. I've apparently missed out on some discussion. I'll number things in case anyone wishes to respond to a particular point.
1. Relicense. Upgrade. Potatoe. Potato. GPL v3 is different from v3.1. I'd call it a re-license.
Second, it's not relicensing. Devs can use that clause to license their software under specific versions of the GPL.
Current versions of the GPL (sans alterations, thanks for everyone for pointing out that yes, you can choose to modify the license you start with) include said clause.
2. Well, if Linus would just license his code under a different license, maybe we'd have Linux under a BSD-style license. Oh wait, it's not his project, is it? It's owned by the GPL. Thanks for clearing that up.
What's the viable non-GPL alternative to Linux?
3. Yet, if it's only my code in the project, that defeats the purpose of having licensed it with the GPL, which is to get a LOT of code from a LOT of people to make the project better. Thus, the GPL owns the project. It might not own *my* original code. But it sure does own a copy of everyone's contributions (including mine) in the project. Unless everyone later agreed to 'recontribute' said code to the project under a different license.
First, your project is never "owned" by the GPL, it is owned by you. I think you maybe mean "controlled", but that's not true either. You can always license your own code however you want.
4. And this is the root of the issue. There are many people out there who don't agree with the GPL. Neither do we like being told what to do. After all, you don't like me telling you that the issue can also be solved by noone using the GPL for their code, thus we should all use non-copyleft licenses.
And as I said above, the "I can't use GPL code" problem is solved by being GPL yourself, and I honestly don't see what the problem with that is.
5. Are you implying that a project like FreeBSD would somehow fold if the FreeBSD Foundation folded?
The "can't close the source" characteristic is important because it meant that even if Mozilla folded, their software projects wouldn't go down with them, thus establishing a permanent gold-standard browser.
6. Sort of will have to cover as much as we agree. I still think gcc has a lot of inherent technical issues in it, which will surface over the coming years. Some of those issues have already surfaced.
We sort of agree. The technical problem was caused by Apple's refusal to open XCode's source.
Also, refusal to release source is not a technical issue. Failing to be able to utilize gcc's sources is also not a technical issue. However, having to treat it like a black box, leads to technical issues in that you cannot get directly into the meat of it to do any fancy features.
7. I'm sorry, I didn't know that all BSD-licensed code is closed-source. </sarcasm>
You're for code reuse because it leads to better feature development. How do you reuse code that's closed source?
8. Not rephrase. You gave your own statement.
Ladna said:[/b]I would rephrase your statement[/B]
9. Example of something with competition? I mean, between competing GPL projects.
I like how people say with GPL projects there is no competition. Well that is a complete lie.
Also, as stated multiple times before, the license of the code applies to others and not the actual owners of the code.
Plus, it is an assholeish move if you take someone elses code who wrote it for nothing and made it open source and used it in your closed source project.
Again, the code you write belongs to you (short of signing it over to someone else). But the project you create isn't always solely yours.
There's a lot of commercial projects out there based on FreeBSD. Most of these commercial projects contribute back to the FreeBSD project, when they can. It's not always a complete one-way street, and I fail to see how it's "assholeish." But I can see how you might think it's rude, since you built something, they profited from it, and you got nothing in return. Again. "If I'm not benefiting from it, noone is!"
10. So, you don't think the fact that Novell was suing the bejesus out of everything BSD at the time when Linux became popular had anything to do with it? Please tell me at least that you are aware of the fact that every business in the world was fearful of anything related to BSD while the Novell lawsuits dragged on.
By "viable" I intended to imply "more than 30 people use them". While that's somewhat hyperbolic, I think there are strong reasons why the BSDs are less popular than Linux, the main reason being the GPL.
Thus, I don't think license had ANYTHING to do with the why BSD had a slower growth curve than Linux. If you have every business (which is the biggest server market, and sells client machines) fearful of being sued should Novell have won the lawsuits, and thus ignoring BSD, you're going to stagnate its growth. This lawsuit has been cited numerous times as the reason why the community around Linux grew much faster than that around the various BSDs.
11. I'm glad we were able to avoid these odd comments during our discussion. I think it's been an amazingly pleasant discussion between someone who believes the GPL should be everywhere, and someone who believes that the GPL should be dumped in favor of more BSD-style licenses. Shame that it couldn't be avoided with anyone else, especially when they started (later on in this thread) bringing comparisons to politics into the discussion.
...but in the same way you can say that making murder illegal restricts freedom: the list of actions people can take shrinks. But imagine all the societal ills that would occur if murder weren't illegal.
12. Reminds me a bit of the thesis topic for John Nash, in A Beautiful Mind. Now I want to watch that movie.
This is a really interesting point, and one I don't think anyone's definitively solved. When are people more productive, when they're competing or when they're cooperating?
13. At some point in this discussion, it occurred to me that it feels like licensing is like religion. There seems to be something for everyone. You'll get your extreme believers, your disbelievers, everyone in the middle, and your complete deniers (public domain). Just don't try drawing comparisons to any particular religion for any particular license supporter. Every comparison can be shot down. Part of me really just wanted 13 points in the response. :)
(edit: fix typo)
Last edited by Lyfe on 11-27-12 at 20:56