bcw(4) is gone

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Re: bcw(4) is gone

gklok
On Thu, Apr 05, 2007 at 08:26:06PM -0300, Andr?s Delfino wrote:
> On 4/5/07, Rogier Krieger <[hidden email]> wrote:
> >On 4/6/07, Andris Delfino <[hidden email]> wrote:
> >> What's wrong? They protect their license. Period.

> >No one seems to dispute the right of copyright holders to protect their
> licence.

> >That said, there are more ways than one to protect one's licence. It
> >hardly seems unreasonable to privately contact the developer in
> >question before going public, as seems to be the custom in many other
> >suspected licence issues.

> >Choosing to first send a private message would likely have remedied
> >any issues, both quickly and with a lot less fallout. Too bad that
> >that didn't happen.

> >Rogier


> First, this wouldn't happen cause I prefer the BSD license, but, if
> someone violates the copyright of my work, I'll take that guy down. In
> the most publicly and shameful way.
Thats great! What would that accomplish?
Software is developed by PEOPLE (plural), people dont work very well
together when one of them is acting like a five year old.

gwk

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Re: bcw(4) is gone

Steven Harms-2
In reply to this post by Andrés Delfino
There are two roads, the high and the low road.  I am not sure why an adult
(assuming) needs to be educated on this.  The guy took code and relicensed
it.  That sucks.  We know.  But instead of trying to work with him, and
educated him (since he does do a ton of work on free software), Michael
effectively destroys him.  Thats fair.  Whether code is GPL or BSD, we all
are in the same sea, and our boats are pretty damn close.

On 4/5/07, Andris Delfino <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> He should realized that he couldn't do that... get it?

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Re: bcw(4) is gone

darren kirby
This is not so much a response to you Steven, as to the entire OpenBSD
community.

quoth the Steven Harms:
> There are two roads, the high and the low road.  I am not sure why an adult
> (assuming) needs to be educated on this.

High road? Is that how you would describe Theo's handling of this situation?

> The guy took code and relicensed
> it.  That sucks.  We know.

The guy didn't send an email privately first. That sucks. We know.

> But instead of trying to work with him, and
> educated him (since he does do a ton of work on free software),

Oh no? Read the thread again:

From: Michael Buesch:
>>We'd like to offer you to start cooperating with us

From: Michael Buesch:
>>We would not be opposed to relicensing parts of our code under the BSD
>>license on an explicit case-by-case base.

From: Theo de Raadt:
>>> Do you feel that Marcus should give up his efforts?
From: Joseph Jezak:
>>To say it clearly: No!

From: Joseph Jezak:
>>As one of the reverse engineers, the reason for the openness of
>>writing the specification was to ensure that the Chinese Wall method
>>was maintained.

>>To date, I have not been contacted by any of the bcw programmers
>>regarding clarification of the specification, but I would welcome
>>any questions they might have.

So how were they not trying to work with the OpenBSD folks?

> Michael
> effectively destroys him.  

Eh? Destroys him? Are you drinking the same kool-aid as Theo? It was Marcus
that had a hissy and deleted the bloody code. A response, I might add, I see
a lot from my six-year old. Nope. Michael asked politely to have a quick
resolution to the issue. It was all Theo with the personal attacks.

Here are some more choice quotes from your fearless project leader, taking the
high-road, of course:

>> You are a very poor example of humankind.

>>You're no big man.  You're main characteristic is 'bully'.

>>You are an inhuman asshole

>> We don't trust Linux people anymore.

I especially like that last one. So you would write off an entire community
because of the actions of one guy? A perfectly measured and reasonable
response, taking the high road of course.

> Thats fair.  Whether code is GPL or BSD, we all
> are in the same sea, and our boats are pretty damn close.

You are right. Too bad Theo feels the need to throw mines in the water.

Look: I'm not religious about these issues, I just like Unix and free
software, and I don't give a rats ass at this point who is wrong or right
about the original issue. To my mind, both acted plenty dumb, but this
episode has opened my eyes to the fact that I want nothing to do with your
community. Theo's (and Marcus') response is absolutely shameful and
disgusting.

Granted, I'm a nobody, and my words don't mean shit, but you _all_ should have
a good long think about how Theo's reaction to this plays to others in the
greater OSS community, and beyond.

Wasn't his biggest beef about Michael's public disclosure and lack of respect?
Causing OpenBSD embarrassment? Well what the hell do you call Theo's public
blowout which included both personal attacks and plenty of creative
misreading that could easily be called propaganda? (Hint: No one said 'thief'
but Theo) Is that what you call the high road?

Don't bother responding, I'm gone. Have fun with your Broadcom chips....

-d
--
darren kirby :: Part of the problem since 1976 :: http://badcomputer.org
"...the number of UNIX installations has grown to 10, with more expected..."
- Dennis Ritchie and Ken Thompson, June 1972

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Re: bcw(4) is gone

Simon Effenberg
In reply to this post by gklok
On Thu, Apr 05, 2007 at 08:13:39PM -0400, Gordon Willem Klok wrote:
> Software is developed by PEOPLE (plural), people dont work very well
> together when one of them is acting like a five year old.
>
> gwk

Isn't everybody in this discussion like a five year old?
If you look at the thread it makes ping-pong-ping-pong from both sides.

Neither the BSD side nor the BCW side is really really fair the hole
time. Both sides are like rocks..

Why don't do a cut? Let Marcus and Michael work on this!

s

--
GnuPG: 5755FB64

Per aspera ad astra.

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Re: bcw(4) is gone

Weldon Goree
In reply to this post by Floor Terra
> Would it be wrong to develop software using existing GPL'ed code as a
> starting point.
> And bit by bit rewrite the code until you have rewritten all of it.
> Then releasing the final code under an BSD license?

*shrug* Personally I consider that a derivative work and try to avoid
it, though practically if your rewrite is different enough nobody would
ever know.

Maybe this is the other side of the blob fight; we should be just as
eager to make sure there is no improperly-copied GPL (or APL or MPL
or...) code in the tree as we are to make sure there are no mysterious
hunks of binary code (why exactly these issues always seem to come to a
head about wireless drivers as opposed to other parts of the tree is
beyond me -- Intel never requires its sound or ethernet controllers to
have non-freely-redistributable firmware).

IMO this is a vindication of the principle that being a jerk doesn't
necessarily make you wrong: Michael should have handled this differently
(especially given the state of the driver at the time), but he does have
a responsibility to protect his license. It seems to be a big concern to
him that the hardware vendor not be able to use his software, so the GPL
is the correct license for his work. I have trouble imagining a
situation where I wouldn't want a hardware vendor to use my code if it
worked better, but he's the author so it's his decision to make.

Weldon

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Re: bcw(4) is gone

Antoine Jacoutot
In reply to this post by darren kirby
On Fri, 6 Apr 2007, darren kirby wrote:
> This is not so much a response to you Steven, as to the entire OpenBSD
> community.

Ok, as I feel part of it, I will respond to this.

> High road? Is that how you would describe Theo's handling of this situation?

Theo reacted _to_ the handling of the situation.

> So how were they not trying to work with the OpenBSD folks?

What is the problem with you people... isn't it clear that as soon as
the first mail was sent PUBLIC and to a whole bunch of people the rest
is just blablabla!

> a lot from my six-year old. Nope. Michael asked politely to have a quick
> resolution to the issue. It was all Theo with the personal attacks.

All I have to say is that next time you make a mistake, I hope someone
will make sure a maximum of people know about it so that they can
point fingers at you and write a shitty article on some stupid Internet
so-called news site.
Of course, someone could just have told you "dude, watch out, you've
made a mistake here" and this would have ended right where it began...
but no, this is so much fun to flame people.

> I especially like that last one. So you would write off an entire community
> because of the actions of one guy? A perfectly measured and reasonable
> response, taking the high road of course.

Do you also call the first mail sent to many many many people a
"perfectly measured and reasonable" post?

> Wasn't his biggest beef about Michael's public disclosure and lack of respect?
> Causing OpenBSD embarrassment? Well what the hell do you call Theo's public
> blowout which included both personal attacks and plenty of creative
> misreading that could easily be called propaganda? (Hint: No one said 'thief'
> but Theo) Is that what you call the high road?

It is how I call defending against "inhuman reaction".

> Don't bother responding, I'm gone. Have fun with your Broadcom chips....

Don't tell me what to do. I answer if I want to... and please, don't
come back.

I usually don't answer to those kinds of messages, but seeing how people
are stupid, brain damaged and obstinate makes me really pissed!
Don't they understand the situation on purpose???

--
Antoine

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Re: bcw(4) is gone

chefren
In reply to this post by Andrés Delfino
On 4/6/07 1:26 AM, Andris Delfino wrote:

> First, this wouldn't happen cause I prefer the BSD license, but, if
> someone violates the copyright of my work, I'll take that guy down. In
> the most publicly and shameful way.

A) If you really prefer BSD you wouldn't care about what people do
with your code, the only reason why your name as an author is in the
code is because without that anybody could claim "that's my code pay
me", your name is there just to prevent other people put claims on it,
not for your "honour". BSD is about maximum open-ness and making it
impossible to violate copyright.

B) If you don't have the decency to inquire before you do harm to
people, even to a type like Saddam Houssein you are plain stupid asshole.

The whole situation makes me think of the sneaky guy in this one:

http://www.dumpert.nl/mediabase/12523/f0abd313/index.html


+++chefren

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Re: bcw(4) is gone

Stuart Henderson
In reply to this post by darren kirby
On 2007/04/06 00:27, darren kirby wrote:
> Oh no? Read the thread again:

I think it would have been fairer if you included Marcus' response
for the benefit of people who just read your selected quotes rather
than the whole thread.

http://article.gmane.org/gmane.linux.kernel.wireless.general/1573

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Re: bcw(4) is gone

Damien Miller
In reply to this post by Andrés Delfino
On Thu, 5 Apr 2007, Andris Delfino wrote:

> First, this wouldn't happen cause I prefer the BSD license, but, if
> someone violates the copyright of my work, I'll take that guy down. In
> the most publicly and shameful way.

How does this militant attitude work alongside your preference for
the BSD license? If another free software developer is violating your
license, would you publicly shame someone who is probably working for
similar reasons to yourself, or would you give them the benefit of the
doubt and give them a private "do you know what you are doing?" email
and try to work things out like gentlepeople?

I know of at least one GPL project that violates the license (BSD) of
some code that I wrote. If I ever cared to enforce that license then I
would certainly be polite first.

-d

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Re: bcw(4) is gone

Floor Terra
In reply to this post by chefren
-----BEGIN PGP SIGNED MESSAGE-----
Hash: SHA1


On 6-apr-2007, at 10:32, chefren wrote:

> On 4/6/07 1:26 AM, Andris Delfino wrote:
>
>> First, this wouldn't happen cause I prefer the BSD license, but, if
>> someone violates the copyright of my work, I'll take that guy  
>> down. In
>> the most publicly and shameful way.
>
> A) If you really prefer BSD you wouldn't care about what people do  
> with your code, the only reason why your name as an author is in  
> the code is because without that anybody could claim "that's my  
> code pay me", your name is there just to prevent other people put  
> claims on it, not for your "honour". BSD is about maximum open-ness  
> and making it impossible to violate copyright.
>
> B) If you don't have the decency to inquire before you do harm to  
> people, even to a type like Saddam Houssein you are plain stupid  
> asshole.
>
> The whole situation makes me think of the sneaky guy in this one:
>
> http://www.dumpert.nl/mediabase/12523/f0abd313/index.html
>
>
> +++chefren
>

Mistakes where made on both sides.
This entire discussion is about how you handle problems and if you
should remain friendly (or not) when such problems occur.

Please keep the discussion friendly and on topic.
Posting links to a movie of some guy making racist  and other insulting
comments while videotaping two people fighting DOES NOT HELP ANYONE.
What are you trying to accomplish with this?

Floor Terra
iD8DBQFGFj+NUnW3VkBpTO4RAlK8AKCmZvX9CHj2BoVecskiQjgiD8Y8XgCg32Yw
lhj1K0f6dV5+n10b6PYFV5Y=
=vnTH
-----END PGP SIGNATURE-----

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Re: bcw(4) is gone

Siegbert Marschall
In reply to this post by Marc Balmer
Hi,

> Now everyone has won, the Linux people, Broadcom and the OpenBSD users.
>
> Thank you, Linux BCW developers!
>
actually, although the above is clearly meant in the sense if irony.
I take it literally and agree with it.

didn't cry a single tear about the adaptec shit either.

my laptop has some silly 3com softmodem, which is not supported and
I don't care that much. yes it would be more convenient to have it
working but I still have enough serial (not even pcmcia) modems to
carry around in case I need a modem which work better anyway.

in the whole thread on gmane there is the sentence

"I am going to take my toys and go home" is an immature, childish
response to an adult problem.

in this case I don't think so. why the fuck should I buy some trash
from nvidia, adaptec, broadcom and spend have people spending lifeblood
on doing the work of those when I can get stuff from amd,lsi,ralink ?

public market is not a democratic republic. the only vote there is the
vote of the feet. so people, don't buy and don't use trash dispose it
properly and there will be less trash on the market.

( the sentece wasn't meant or used in this way in ther original thread,
  but the above is what came to my mind when I read it. in the original
  meaning it was referring to the deletion of the driver from the tree.
  I don't see this childish though. If we play we play for fun and not
  for profit. when the fun is gone there is no reason to keep playing
  unless one draws pleasure from the pain or fun is not the reason to
  play. )

apart from that Michael Buesch obviously doesn't have the balls to
admit when he's wrong. like theo said, one pm would've been enough.
I can understand that and why he didn't do that and sent out the mail
to many, obviously he believed there was theft there and looking at
the situation he had some reason to believe that. but at least later
on he could've admitted that it was the wrong thing to do, that what
he saw was not somebody intentionally stealing something from them
but somebody putting things where they don't belong without realising
and considering the consequeces of his actions. however, let it rest
in peace, I hope we all learned something from it.

CVS is _public_ for good and for bad, use with care the michaels are
watching you. ;)

-sm

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Re: bcw(4) is gone

Henning Brauer
In reply to this post by Floor Terra
* Floor Terra <[hidden email]> [2007-04-06 01:43]:
> Would it be wrong to develop software using existing GPL'ed code as a
> starting point.
> And bit by bit rewrite the code until you have rewritten all of it.
> Then releasing the final code under an BSD license?

100% legal

--
Henning Brauer, [hidden email], [hidden email]
BS Web Services, http://bsws.de
Full-Service ISP - Secure Hosting, Mail and DNS Services
Dedicated Servers, Rootservers, Application Hosting - Hamburg & Amsterdam

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Re: bcw(4) is gone

Eric Furman-3
In reply to this post by Marc Balmer
On Thu, 05 Apr 2007 21:29:52 +0200, "Marc Balmer" <[hidden email]>
said:

> Diana Eichert wrote:
>
> > bcw(4) is gone
>
> Marcus Glocker, [hidden email], knows a big deal about wireless
> LANs.  He has been involved in many of our wirelesss driver, he has also
> written applications for wireless applications like rtunes.  He wrote
> the nostromo webserver.  He is certainly the person who knows how to
> write original code.
>
> When it comes to bcw, a piece of hardware for that no documentation
> exists, he decided to use the docs the linux folks have.
>
> He began a rewrite of a bcw driver, inspired by the work of the linux
> folks.  His driver was not working yet, to give him a headstart, he used
> some code of the linux folks with the clear intent to replace it with
> his own.  Just to make sure this shit works.

When I read Michael Buesch's original e-mail, I figured this out. He was
probably just using it for testing purposes.
I do not call myself a programmer. I just know enough scripting to get
my job done, but even I figured this out. It doesn't take a genius.

>
> To ease his work, and to let others in our group to step in in his
> efforts, he committet it to our work area which we call cvs.

A CVS is not by any stretch of the imagination a public repository
of code for anyone to use. So no code was released hence no
license violation. It doesn't take a genius.

>
> The linux folks tooks this as the grounds to ride attacks agains Marcus,
> claiming license violations.
>
> Marcus, devoting his spare time to OpenBSD decided that this is
> kindergarten and best left to the Linux amateurs and deleted his driver
> from the OpenBSD cvs tree.
>
> Now everyone has won, the Linux people, Broadcom and the OpenBSD users.
>
> Thank you, Linux BCW developers!
>

<AntiLinuxRant>
Forget it. I was annoyed by the "GPL" Nazis and was going to write
a long diatribe, but what's the point. I would either be preaching to
the choir or just ignored as another one of those people who "just
don't get it".
</AntiLinuxRant>

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Re: bcw(4) is gone

Eric Furman-3
In reply to this post by Daniel Ouellet
On Thu, 05 Apr 2007 17:25:53 -0400, "Daniel Ouellet"
<[hidden email]> said:

> Where is the Open Community is going these days...
>

They stated that they don't want Broadcom to take their work and close
it. Why do they care? What possible difference does it make?
Broadcom will get a driver that actually works well?
They're not going to make any money off their work on the Broadcom
driver (the GPL nonsense makes sure of that) so why do they give
a flying f*** *what* Broadcom does with their code?

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Re: bcw(4) is gone

Marco Peereboom
In reply to this post by Weldon Goree
> IMO this is a vindication of the principle that being a jerk doesn't
> necessarily make you wrong: Michael should have handled this differently
> (especially given the state of the driver at the time), but he does have
> a responsibility to protect his license. It seems to be a big concern to
> him that the hardware vendor not be able to use his software, so the GPL
> is the correct license for his work. I have trouble imagining a
> situation where I wouldn't want a hardware vendor to use my code if it
> worked better, but he's the author so it's his decision to make.

This is the absolute lamest argument that I have ever heard.  What makes
you think that Michael Douche has written anything "better" than
broadcom?  Granted there are better vendors out there but I am willing
to bet money that broadcom has better engineers working on their
products than some random dude working on a driver without docs and
available engineers to bounce questions of.  I am sure his "magical"
sequence is like super good.

I for one am glad that Marcus deleted the code; I would have done it
immediately after that email and responded with the cvs delete message
to an even wider audience and no explanation of my rationale.

What you people seem to miss in the whole discussion here is that Linux
people contact vendors IN PRIVATE if they find GPL violations yet a
valuable member of the open source community does not get the same
courtesy.  Only bad things happen when one looks at Linux code.  This is
yet another example of it.  This also underscores once more that Linux
as a community is dead.

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Re: bcw(4) is gone

bofh-6
On 4/6/07, Marco Peereboom <[hidden email]> wrote:
> What you people seem to miss in the whole discussion here is that Linux
> people contact vendors IN PRIVATE if they find GPL violations yet a
> valuable member of the open source community does not get the same
> courtesy.  Only bad things happen when one looks at Linux code.  This is
> yet another example of it.  This also underscores once more that Linux
> as a community is dead.

Not sure if I agree with you on that.  Michael seemed to indicate that
he'll do the same to a vendor.  You can't lump all linux folks as of
one mind.  Agree that not treating everyone the same sucks, but this
isn't the whole community doing it.

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Re: bcw(4) is gone

Weldon Goree
In reply to this post by Eric Furman-3
On Fri, 2007-04-06 at 10:22 -0400, [hidden email] wrote:
> They stated that they don't want Broadcom to take their work and close
> it. Why do they care? What possible difference does it make?
> Broadcom will get a driver that actually works well?

What do you care if that's what they care about? Don't forget that the
desire to keep proprietary vendors from forking and re-closing code was
precisely and explicitly the reason the GPL was written; someone who
values that is probably going to choose the GPL to release their work
under. Complaining that Developer X chooses to use the GPL is as useless
as complaining that Vendor Y chooses not to release source code at all.
In both cases it's a license that is at odds with the purpose and
principles of OpenBSD, and in both cases it's a violation of those
authors' rights to copy their code in a manner they have not licensed
you to.

I'm not trying to come across as some sort of GPL cheerleader. I don't
use it except when contracts stipulate it (and more do than you might
think, given your "they can't make money" statement) and I think this
situation is a good example of why the GPL bad for code trees with
multiple authors (which is going to be any code tree of significant
complexity that accepts patches). If one guy writes something and
chooses to place it under the GPL, he can then relicense in a situation
like this; if there end up being 40 authors of a module it's impractical
to track every one of them down if they haven't handed their copyright
over to a primary maintainer, especially if all you really know about
somebody is their public key and email address 3 years ago when they
committed last.

But all those complaints don't mean anything at all: I wasn't an author
for the Linux driver so I don't get a say in how the Linux driver is
licensed. The people who did the work to write it get to decide under
what terms it can be redistributed, and once they have decided that they
have a responsibility to see it is enforced. They don't have to CC
hundreds of people on their first mailing like this guy did, but then
again they have a right to do so if they want to. Just like I have a
right to think they're jerks for doing that.

Weldon

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Re: bcw(4) is gone

Marcus Watts
In reply to this post by darren kirby
Writes darren kirby <[hidden email]>:
...

> From: Joseph Jezak:
> >>As one of the reverse engineers, the reason for the openness of
> >>writing the specification was to ensure that the Chinese Wall method
> >>was maintained.
>
> >>To date, I have not been contacted by any of the bcw programmers
> >>regarding clarification of the specification, but I would welcome
> >>any questions they might have.
>
> So how were they not trying to work with the OpenBSD folks?

In order for the OpenBSD folks to have worked this out, they would have
had to go through function by function and ask for approval to use that
function.  If refused, they would have had to devise a workaround that
was sufficiently different as to qualify as "new and original" --
without documentation.  The example function quoted sounded like it was
actually a macro - probably a small enough chunk of code that there may
not be any logical "new and original" alternative.  So, even if we stop
here, we have a cumbersome process that (a) wastes a lot of time, and
(b) is not guaranteed to result in anything that works.  But wait,
there's worse!  The FSF contract standard generally requires a release
*in writing*.  (See documents like "Legal Issues about Contributing
Code to GNU").  Assuming the gnu bcw programmers are serious about
protecting their interests (and they sure sound like they are), and
assuming the openBSD folks are even willing to tolerate this level of
nonsense, then to get the same level of protection each of these
exceptions would then need a separate written release.  So, what we're
talking about here is a momumental amount of work that is easily an
order of magnitude more complicated than the actual driver, with no
appreciable benefit to anybody except perhaps the lawyers drafting up
all those releases.  No part of this process produces better code,
and no part of this process produces a more secure operating system,
so all this work we're talking about here is way out of scope for OpenBSD.

There isn't really any alternative for Marcus Glocker here either.  Now
that he's clearly seen the GPL code, it would be very difficult for him
to produce any code for this hardware a clever lawyer couldn't argue
was "derivative".  He's on the "dirty side" of the Chinese Wall now.
Unless he wants to spend 90% of his time working out function by
function copyright releases, the only real alternative he has is to
delete his code & find something completely different of actual value
to work on.

I think the really valuable lesson out of all this is that this shows,
for once & for all, that a GPL licensed driver is *not* an acceptable
substitute for proper documentation released by the maker without undo
intellectual or financial burden (ie, no NDA's, excessive licensing
fees or restrictions.)

It's a shame the gnu folks didn't release their reversed engineered
specifications separately.  I can understand why though; DMCA would
make that a much more risky affair today than when the Phoenix folks
pioneered the Chinese Wall approach.

                                        -Marcus Watts

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Re: bcw(4) is gone

Eric Furman-3
In reply to this post by Eric Furman-3
On Fri, 06 Apr 2007 11:15:33 -0400, "Harry Menegay" <[hidden email]>
said:

> [hidden email] wrote:
> > On Thu, 05 Apr 2007 21:29:52 +0200, "Marc Balmer" <[hidden email]>
> > said:
> >> Diana Eichert wrote:
> >> To ease his work, and to let others in our group to step in in his
> >> efforts, he committet it to our work area which we call cvs.
> >
> > A CVS is not by any stretch of the imagination a public repository
> > of code for anyone to use. So no code was released hence no
> > license violation. It doesn't take a genius.
> >
>
> Uploading it onto a publicly accessible CVS (even though the public
> might not have upload rights) certainly is publishing the code.  He made
> an error by publishing it publicly instead of setting up a private CVS
> to share with others working on the driver, or emailing them updates
> until he could replace all the GPL'd code.  Using someone else's code
> temporarily while working on the changes is quite understandable, but
> uploading it to a publicly viewable CVS where things are assumed to be
> under the BSD license unless specifically marked otherwise is not.  He
> made a mistake in judgment.

You may be right, but then I would have made the same error as he did
if I were in the same situation. Even though it is publicly accessible
does not mean to me that it was *published* and there was certainly
no insertion of a BSD license into the code used. A CVS is a repository
of code under development, not finished products.
I still don't feel any license was violated. I would have understood a
friendly heads up of, "Hey, I see you are using some of my code. Do you
want to discuss the licensing issue or are going to be removing all
of it in the finished product?"
Instead of calling him a thief and then *denying* you called him a
thief.

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Re: bcw(4) is gone

Douglas A. Tutty
In reply to this post by Marco Peereboom
On Fri, Apr 06, 2007 at 09:46:28AM -0500, Marco Peereboom wrote:
 
> What you people seem to miss in the whole discussion here is that Linux
> people contact vendors IN PRIVATE if they find GPL violations yet a
> valuable member of the open source community does not get the same
> courtesy.  Only bad things happen when one looks at Linux code.  This is
> yet another example of it.  This also underscores once more that Linux
> as a community is dead.
>

May I offer the perspective of one coming from Linux?  I'm not a
developer, I'm a user of Debian (since 2001).

This should have been handled in private in a respectful manner.  The
two parties could have quickly released an agreed statement of facts
that left the public clear that a mistake had been made in uploading
something to the cvs under the wrong licence.  My guess (I'm no lawyer)
is that if the GPL people started out with a public accusation like this
towards a corporation, then they would be facing a slander and lible
suit.  

The GPL is based partly on fear and partly on spite:

        Fear that code written to work with device A will be
        incorporated into the firmware of device B whos maker will make
        it closed-source.  Some poor shmuck who has to reverse-engineer
        device B so it works will, when successful, find that the
        resultant driver is very similar to the free driver for device
        A.

        Fear also that a technique written for GNU/Linux will be
        incorporated into the 'competition' (e.g. a popular commercial
        non-*NIX OS).

        Spite: since hardware makers make it difficult to access their
        devices by not releasing specs, why would a developer want their
        hard work being used by a hardware maker; let them do their own
        work.  This tarrs all hardware makers by the same brush.

The Linux community is a divided one: just look at the number of
different distros, differentiated to large extent by philosophy and
'religion' than on technology.  There's also a lot of concern over the
proposed GPLv3 going too far copyleft.  Personally, I don't use a
licence I can't understand.  Unless I can understand the final GPLv3, I
won't be using anything licenced under it.  As the draft stands right
now, it leaves a sour taste in my mouth.

To me, the BSD community is far less divided.  As I see it, FreeBSD
allows non-BSD licenced drivers into the code base to access more
hardware devices; NetBSD is more strictly BSD-licence only while
expending a lot of energy maintaining support for any port imaginable;
OpenBSD is like NetBSD focusing on fewer ports with more intensity to
create better, more secure, code.

But _please_, I'm not trying to start a flame fest.  

That I should feel the need to put in that sentence indicates a
propensity to react that I think pervades the whole FOSS community.

Respectivly,

Doug.

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