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Re: Royalty free gstreamer plug-in

Thomas Vander Stichele wrote:
That is not accurate.  Use of the MIT license doesn't change the patent

Could you expand on that point a bit ? Calling something "the patent
situation" doesn't tell me exactly what you mean.

FWIW, for most distributions the problem with mp3 code is precisely that
all these decoders were GPL-licensed, and the GPL has a clause that
terminates your right to distribute if you cannot distribute freely to
all (remember, IANAL).  So the problem was in the GPL, not in the code
or in the fact that patents apply.

Red Hat in general and Fedora in particular are a tad different.

So far Red Hat has not seen GPL and other FOSS licensing as constraints that need to be worked around to earn money, but was always very serious about promoting clean FOSS practices (as evidenced by the re-licensings of the assets they bought, early Gnome support, etc).

Lots of distros have tried clever licensing schemes to get around FOSS IP "problems". Caldera was marketed as the distro for businesses (ie people who gave dang about FOSS ethics). Mandriva has often played this game too. For a very long time Suse didn't want to free yast. Need I write about ndsiwraper too ?

Well the market chose. It seems people that matter (which influence purchases) care more about FOSS ethics than marketing people think. At this point squandering all the goodwill accrued by taking a firm FOSS stand would be something very stupid for Red Hat to do. Because your offer is very nice, and as a user I welcome it, but I would never make a long-term commitment to a distro that swallowed such a poison pill. I might as well start using Solaris.

People write about Red Hat being the next Microsoft (or other such stupid things). The truth is the software Fedora delivers is as ethically pure as Debian's, and at least you don't have to wait years for it to get out of the release process.

Nicolas Mailhot

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