Subject: Re: Unexercisable rights
From: "Stephen J. Turnbull" <>
Date: Thu, 24 Jun 1999 18:07:41 +0900 (JST)

Somebody Brian didn't attribute to wrote:

    >> I say that you abandoned the right (to the extent to which you
    >> did abandon it, a topic I will not address here) by agreeing to

Don't argue with BB on his ground.  No rights were abandoned; no court
will provide an injunction against an attempt to redistribute, and the
court will grant relief if the vendor tries to prevent the customer
from redistributing (except by doing something equivalent to buying
back the right).  QED.

    >> pay $20M for something which you could not afford to give away
    >> at that price.  I never took it from you.

Um, what's this "can't afford to give away at that price" illogic?
Once paid, the price is a sunk cost, and should not affect the the
purchaser's decision whether to give it away or not.  (It does screen
out Robin Hood, qv.)  Admittedly, smart people do fall prey to that
fallacy (DJ Delorie did in his example about not reselling Adobe
Photoshop).  But we shouldn't base a philosophical argument on fallacy.

By the way, Brian, if the _customer_ "can't afford to give away" the
product having paid M$20 for it, why do you insist the _developer_
_can_ afford to give it away having spent M$10 to build it?

>>>>> "Brian" == Brian Bartholomew <> writes:

    Brian> Even if I went with that interpretation, the customer still
    Brian> isn't going to be redistributing.

So what?  Your argument basically amounts to "I've given up the right
to steal the software directly from the vendor, but I want the
legitimate customers to do it for me."

Don't admit that "steal" characterizes what you're talking about?
OK---but then why berate the customers for not distributing?  It's
the vendors who are involved in sins of omission.  Ie, what you really
advocate is simply socializing all software.

That's off-topic on FSB.

University of Tsukuba                Tennodai 1-1-1 Tsukuba 305-8573 JAPAN
Institute of Policy and Planning Sciences       Tel/fax: +81 (298) 53-5091
What are those two straight lines for?  "Free software rules."