Subject: Re: Another dumb GPL question
From: "Stephen J. Turnbull" <turnbull@sk.tsukuba.ac.jp>
Date: Thu, 7 Jun 2001 15:29:06 +0900

>>>>> "Frank" == Frank Hecker <frank@collab.net> writes:

    Frank> However IMO that does _not_ mean that the code in A(n) must
    Frank> be distributed _only_ under GPL terms. In other words,
    Frank> there may be some n for which some or even all of the code
    Frank> in A(n) could be distributed under proprietary terms (or in
    Frank> general, non-GPL terms) in addition to being distributed
    Frank> under GPL terms.

If the GNU GPL is the only public license in the chain, this is _not_
a function of n!  This is a function of getting all the relevant
authors together in one room to agree that their code is available
under the terms desired.  That's basically what you said, except that
by some magic your future contributors were _all_ dual-licensing.  How
likely is that?  Especially if the GPL-only maintainer is active?

It's true that bitrot, poor implementations, and the like leave room
for appropriation of the ideas, and that certain kinds of public
licenses make that substantially easier.  But the "clean-room
reimplementation" blade cuts both ways.  As Russ Nelson would surely
say, "the price of freedom is eternal vigilence."  In the end,

	       it's not the license---it's the quality.

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