Subject: Re: [Fwd: [icecast-dev] Xiph.org announces Vorbis Beta 4 and the Xiph.org Foundation]
From: Ben_Tilly@trepp.com
Date: Mon, 26 Feb 2001 15:27:58 -0500


Ben Laurie breathlessly announces:
> Gasp! RMS endorses a BSD licence?
>
> BTW, this is very much the reason the ASF uses a BSD licence and is not
> at all keen on the GPL. I will resist the temptation to make further
> comment.

Why is this a surprise?

A lot of people dislike RMS, but he is very, very consistent.  He has
a very specific goal.  All of the stuff about licenses, essays, talks,
the FSF, and so on has but one goal.  Create a world where there is no
need to use proprietary software.

Whether or not you agree with the goal or like the man, he is very
consistent about this.  Normally he advocates the GPL on the basis of
the fact that he wants people to be forced to make an explicit choice
about whether they are accepting free goodies or writing proprietary
software.  He has no illusions about some day seeing a magical end to
greed.  If it takes the force of law to make people free their
software, he wants to apply the force of law to do it!

However he has always been willing to consider each case on its
merits and recommend that specific pieces of free software be made
available to producers of proprietary software.  The usual reason
(and the reason in this case) is that if he doesn't cooperate with
people who want to produce free software, he thinks that the world
will standardize on a proprietary standard which will be a long-term
detriment to his cause.

But if Ogg Vorbis were not in competition with an entrenched
proprietary standard, I strongly doubt that he would have approved of
using a BSD license.

Cheers,
Ben