On Friday, 16 October 2015 at 14:09:13 UTC, Nick Sabalausky wrote:
This is the real reason I'm not a huge fan of *GPL. Nobody can understand it!


It is really simple!! The basic idea is that people shouldn't have to reverse engineer software they use in order to fix it/modify it, so when you receive software you should get the right to the means to modify it (the source code).

In addition GPL also gives you the right to distribute copies (if you want to) so that you can let others enjoy your improved version of the program.

It doesn't give the public the right to demand source code to be made available, only owners of legally obtained copies get the right to demand the full source to be available for them.

It also does not forbid linking against anything, it requires the copyright holder to grant rights to the receiver of the copy (access to source code and making copies to distribute under the same terms).

As long as you keep your modifications/derived works for yourself, the only party that has been granted GPL for the derived work is yourself. One dilemma here is that a company with a million employees is treated like a single entity legally. So big companies can embrace the GPL freely for internal use and services without the redistribution GPL clauses coming into effect, whereas smaller companies that exchange software between them cannot restrict redistribution...

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