Bwo Pranesh Prakash, Commons-Law list
 Mon, 2 Jul 2007 
(I did 'some' - pffff... - editing)

Dear All,

On Friday, June 29, 2007, GPL Version 3 was officially released.

Around ten days back, Bruce Perens published a really good article on
Technocrat, titled Clearing up anti-GPL3


In that article, Perens argues that GPL3 is necessary to keep up with
changing technologies and to prevent innovative ways in which GPL2 could be
by-passed (which was revealed during GPL3's draft stages by last
year's Novell-Microsoft deal


see this humourous visual timeline of the deal, 


and vehemently (and successfully, IMHO) contests charges that GPL3 seeks 
to weaken DRMs.  (These charges, I might add, were more than valid up to 
the 2nd draft of GPL3, when DRMs were outright banned


He also give reasons for why the Linux kernel should shift to GPL3 (noting
that there have been reservations towards this end by core kernel authors,
including Linus Torvalds).  However, as an article in Ars Technica (see
below) notes, Torvalds has recently shifted his stance and has become more
receptive of GPL3.

Easy to link plain text (.txt) version of GPL3


FSF's press release for GPL 3


Text of GPL3


Statement by RMS on why one should upgrade to v3



>From Ars Technica


GPL 3 officially released
By Ryan Paul | Published: June 29, 2007 - 07:57PM CT

After four drafts, broad discussion, and extensive public review, the FSF 
has finally published the official, much-anticipated GPL revision 3 (GPL 
3). The new version aims to clarify aspects of the previous version, 
strengthen unencumbered redistribution by imposing new patent licensing 
requirements, and protect the user's right to modify GPL software on 
embedded systems.

The GPL is the most popular open-source software license, and it is used 
by many high-profile open-source software projects, including the Linux 
kernel. Unlike proprietary software licenses, the GPL explicitly 
guarantees users the right to modify, repurpose, and redistribute 
software. "Since we founded the free software movement, over 23 years ago, 
the free software community has developed thousands of useful programs 
that respect the user's freedom," says FSF president Richard Stallman in a 
statement. "Most of these programs use the GNU GPL to guarantee every user 
the freedom to run, study, adapt, improve, and redistribute the program."

Many contentious issues in the GPL 3 caused controversy and debate 
throughout the draft process:


An unexpected patent agreement between Microsoft and Novell compelled the 
FSF to revise the patent licensing language in a late GPL 3 draft in an 
effort to block deals in the future.




Despite the controversy and debate, the highly transparent draft process 
has ensured that the GPL 3 is the product of broad consensus. "By hearing 
from so many different groups in a public drafting process, we have been 
able to write a license that successfully addresses a broad spectrum of 
concerns," says FSF executive director Peter Brown in a statement. "But 
even more importantly, these different groups have had an opportunity to 
find common ground on important issues facing the free software community 
today, such as patents, tivoization, and Treacherous Computing."

Now that the GPL 3 has been released, it is likely that it will be broadly 
adopted within the open-source software community. Although Linux kernel 
creator Linus Torvalds initially rejected the possibility of migrating the 
kernel from the GPL 2 to the GPL 3, the developer has recently 
the possibility is once again under consideration.

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