Subject: Re: FSBs and mechanized documentation
From: "Stephen J. Turnbull" <>
Date: Fri, 10 Mar 2006 14:22:11 +0900

>>>>> "simo" == simo  <> writes:

    >> The GPLv3 declares "this software is not part of an effective
    >> mechanism" (or whatever the formal statement is).  That is an
    >> explicit restriction on use.

    simo> Why ? It does not stop you to use it as a circumvention
    simo> mechanism.

Of course it does.  An effective anti-circumvention mechanism is by
definition one protected under the DMCA.  Under GPLv3, you must forgo
that protection, and therefore such use is prohibited.

    simo> To me, it is the same as stating: the GNU GPL is not a
    simo> proprietary license.

Non-proprietary license is an oxymoron.  Either someone has
proprietary rights, or there is no need for anyone to obtain a
license.  Starting from a contradiction, you can prove anything. :-)

    simo> It really depends on what you mean by use.

Argh.  No, it depends on what the FSF means by and intends to enforce
as "use", and whether the FSF's terminology is consistent across their
legal documents.  I know what I mean by "use", but with respect to GNU
software what matters is what the FSF's documents say, plus any
"context" that the courts may consider relevant.  My opinions are not
on that map.

    simo> The GPLv3 provision about anti-circumvention mechanisms do
    simo> not prevent you to distribute it, or do not force you to use
    simo> it privately. And if you feel that the outcome maybe a
    simo> restriction on use I think you should add a comment in the
    simo> GPLv3 comment system on

I think not.  My goal is to get attempts to fight DRM _out_ of
software licenses, because I believe it's an ineffective and
inappropriate use of a copyright license.  Ditto anti-patent
provisions.  The FSF quite clearly intends to use their significant
share of the stock of free software to promote exactly such licenses,
and they have a lot of grass-roots support.  You have a right to act
on your own opinion, however incorrect it is. :-)

Better I should devote my efforts to clarifying what their license
actually means, rather than inducing them to obscure it further.

Graduate School of Systems and Information Engineering   University of Tsukuba        Tennodai 1-1-1 Tsukuba 305-8573 JAPAN
        Economics of Information Communication and Computation Systems
          Experimental Economics, Microeconomic Theory, Game Theory