Subject: Re: GNU and classified software
From: Ben Laurie <>
Date: Tue, 15 May 2001 09:46:44 +0100

Crispin Cowan wrote:
> "Jonathan S. Shapiro" wrote:
> > > Why is it relevant whether or not the code is a work for hire when
> > > deciding whether giving it to the government is distributing it?
> >
> > If a GPL compiler is handed from one employee to another, it's not a
> > distribution -- its a transfer within a single legal entity.
> So here's an evil meme:  Dr. Crispie's Evil Proprietary GCC Club.  Membership
> is $500/year.  Members get access to our private fork of GCC.  Members may not
> share code outside the organization, or they forfeit their membership.  Giving
> code from one member to another is not distribution -- its a transfer within a
> single legal entitity
> No, I don't want to do such a thing.  But what is to prevent a (group of) evil
> people from doing so?
> Of course, this is a 2-edged sword:  solutions that are effective at
> preventing Evil Clubs likely also make it impossible for a company to have a
> private  in-house fork at all.

Note that if you favour BSD-style licences this is a non-issue.




"There is no limit to what a man can do or how far he can go if he
doesn't mind who gets the credit." - Robert Woodruff