Re: Apple and Open Source

From: Richard Stallman <rms(at)gnu(dot)org>
To: ean(at)novare(dot)net
Cc: spi-general(at)lists(dot)debian(dot)org
Subject: Re: Apple and Open Source
Date: 1999-03-25 06:57:08
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I think there are two issues here: the requirement to publish changes
and the requirement to notify a specific party.

The requirement to publish changes, even if the changes are not being
used by the public in any way, violates an essential privacy right.

The requirement to notify a specific party when you release a modified
version is perhaps not fatal, but I have a bad feeling about it.

The patent clauses are curious and I can see the danger in the fact that
Apple can keep you from ever getting a chance to fight a patent in court.
On the other hand, Apple has granted use of an unknown number of patents
for use in free software. This seems like a good thing.

These are two separate actions. The latter would be a good thing, not
a problem, of course, but the former is a problem.

(Though in fact they have not granted "use in free software" of these
patents, only use in this particular software, whose freeness or not
is the question here.)


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