Status of GPL v3 merge?
dak at gnu.org
Tue Mar 9 08:39:45 EST 2010
Andreas Roehler <andreas.roehler at online.de> writes:
> BTW as far as its clear, next release will be GPLv3 or never, it
> should be no hindrance merging with GNU code. You just can't make a
> v2 release than again. Please don't let you infect with wrong claims.
Andreas, I believe you changed from Emacs to XEmacs because developers
should not be pestered with licensing and copyright considerations.
Unfortunately, it would be required to switch legislations rather than
editors. Problems won't go away just by closing one's eyes to them.
The ones that actually try changing this situation or at least stemming
the tide, like the EFF (and yes, the FSF) you spurn for being
"political". But there is no apolitical solution to copyright.
Yes, it is a major hassle. And while the GPL in itself in any given
version is not tied to the FSF, licensing under "or later, at your
choice" of course ties the future of software to future decisions of the
FSF, and not doing so causes the hassles XEmacs is currently
experiencing when tracking "or later" software.
It is a hassle, it affects the "public" character of a public license,
because not trusting the FSF here causes hassles later. They _are_
contractually bound to copyright assigners in what they can make future
GPL versions be.
In short, yes this is an enfuriating mess, in particular when you have a
bone to pick with the FSF.
But the mess is caused by copyright. And the FSF, giving and updating
the GPL, tries to give users and developers the best way to rid
themselves of this mess. But it is not perfect, and you don't get
licenses dealing with evolving realities without having the FSF as an
unknown factor on board when some contributors/copyright holders (and
the FSF itself certainly will) update.
All this is a heap of crap nobody wants to deal with. But it will not
disappear by itself. And it makes no sense sabotaging those who
actually do the thankless job of dealing with it.
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