Why is Fedora not a Free GNU/Linux distributions?

Les Mikesell lesmikesell at gmail.com
Thu Jul 24 18:50:40 UTC 2008

Gordon Messmer wrote:
> Your entire argument against the GPL seems to be based on the idea that 
> you repeat, that the GPL replaces the terms of components which are 
> included in a GPL licensed "work as a whole".  This is not the case.  I 
> strongly recommend that you read:
> http://www.softwarefreedom.org/resources/2007/gpl-non-gpl-collaboration.html 

I see they recognize one of the problems the GPL causes:

  "When working in a large GPL’d codebase, it is very easy to change
   the work in a way that causes the GPL to cover files that, in
   isolation, were previously covered only by permissive terms."

But I don't see any solution.  And the total exclusion of material 
covered by MPL/CDDL (i.e. free in the real sense) is unsolvable.

> The first paragraph (a summary) addresses your concerns.  It illustrates 
> two points:
> 1) you must comply with the included work's license, because it 
> continues to apply when included in a GPLed work.

Not necessarily, because it can't be included unless the GPL applies.

> 2) users who receive your GPLed work may extract the included work and 
> reuse it according to its original license, because it continues to 
> apply when included in a GPLed work.

But they can't comply with both licenses at once - they have to choose 
one or the other.  And, as your link points out, this can be problematic.

   Les Mikesell
    lesmikesell at gmail.com

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