piclist 2005\08\21\091725a >
Thread: I say it is spinach . . .
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picon face BY : Gerhard Fiedler email (remove spam text)



Olin Lathrop wrote:

> You are referring to "may not" when I was talking about "can not".  Yes you
> can put all sorts of licenses on open source, but it's nearly impossible to
> police since parts of the code can find themselves in applications with no
> way to identify the original code from the outside.  In the end, you have to
> assume that making source available is essentially giving away the software.

This is true in an essentially closed source world. The problem with the
closed source vs open source thing is that it is not linear. It's something
that has "turning points": the behavior of the system depends on a certain
critical mass. In an environment that's as essentially open source as our
current one is closed source, your argument turns exactly to the contrary:
taking code from someone else becomes much easier, of course, but also much
more obvious.

Open source is actually the only way to enforce software copyright. The
copyright is on the source, and if all you see from a product is the
compiled result, there's no way to determine what copyright was on the
sources used to create it. The only way to determine whether there was a
copyright infringement is to look at the sources. So I would tend to think
that everybody who puts any worth on copyright enforcement would have to be
a proponent of (enforced) open source. No?

Gerhard
<1cgdb6mz9gxyh.j73xe33obgr$.dlg@40tude.net> 7bit

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