☞ Restraining Trade

  • “To summarize:

    • The App Store terms apply to GPLed software in the App Store.
    • Those terms force strict Usage Rules on customers that prohibit many activities that are allowed under the GPL.
    • Those restrictions are not allowed under GPLv2 section 6.”

    In a posting to the VLC mailing list Brett Smith gives expert advice on the compatibility of the GPL and the App Store’s rules. Ultimately this conflict arises because of Apple’s desire to place what it regards as “fair use restrictions” based on the assumption that everything is proprietary. They could pretty easily fix it by adding an open source exception to the terms. Paging Ernie Prabhakar…

  • I’ve written in the past about the state of competitive tendering, and the problem that’s caused by competitors needing to be the ones who enforce regulations by litigating. This case is a rarity, as the costs of initiating an action like this – not least in loss of customer goodwill – are huge. There really should be an update to the legislative frameworks around public competitive tendering so that it’s possible for anyone to make a complaint to a regulator who then takes up and pursues the case – as happens in anti-trust cases.

Also:

  • Stormy has served GNOME well, but she’s leaving them for Mozilla where she’s going to be doing developer marketing by the looks of things.
  • While this event is sponsored by Oracle, there’s a substantial Document Foundation component to the content. In my dreams I hope this will lead to Oracle choosing to work with rather than compete with the community they created.
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