[cc-licenses] Version 3.0 - List Discussion Responses

Greg London email at greglondon.com
Mon Oct 2 10:10:00 EDT 2006

> DRM-banning clauses are an attempt to use law to outlaw code.

I'll say this again for folks who missed it before:

That statement is horseshit.

I don't have a problem with DRM being allowed in a license
that allows the work to be taken private. You could take
someone's CC-By work, slap all rights reserved on it,
satisfy attribution, and wrap the whole thing up in one
big DRM chamber, and I wouldn't care.

Because less restrictive licenses do not CARE about the
content going under a propreitary fork.

CC-ShareAlike is intended for community projects that
need copyleft protection to prevent a proprietary
interest from taking the project private and using that
copy to compete against the open project.

A FLOSS project could be harmed if Microsoft could
take the content, derive it to their purposes, make it
All Rights Reserved, and compete directly against the
original project.

A FLOSS project could be harmed if Microsoft could
take the content, add some patented feature, use patent
law to prevent the FLOSS community from adding that
functionality, and then compete directly against the
FLOSS community using its own works against it.

A FLOSS project could be harmed if Microsoft could
take the content, pull it into a completely enclosed
DRM-ONLY channel, and use the DMCA to prevent the
community from using the channel as well.

in each example above, some part of the work is
closed off by proprietary interests and used
against the community in some way. And these
are exactly the sorts of things that a copyleft
license should protect its content and community

People arguing to allow DRM and use parallel distribution,
are arguing to allow some monopolization because
Alice and Bob would really like to play their
content on some DRM-ONLY platform.

What these people refuse to acknowledge is that to
allow this, is to allow complete monopolization of
the works on this platform by some proprietary interest.
Parallel distribution does not prevent the platform
monopoly, it only gives you a copy that you can play
on your PC.

This is like arguing that we should allow software
patents in GPL'ed code because, well gosh darn it,
there is this really cool patent that Microsoft has,
and they won't let us use that functionality, so the
only way we can play with that functionality is if
we allow Microsoft to take our copyleft software,
create a derivative that adds their patented software,
and then let them keep that derivative private.

It's just a little monopoly, right?
Just a little software patent being allowed to
encroach the content, that's all.
But Gee, won't it be fun if Alice and Bob will
finally get to play with that neat function
that Microsoft patented?
What can it possibly hurt to allow a little
monopolization if it's fun for Alice and Bob?

Software patent-banning clauses are an attempt
to use law to outlaw code! We should allow
software patents in GPL'ed code! Preventing
patents prevents functionality! Prevents code!
We must be Free to make the work Less Free
so that we can have this patented functionality!

Uhm, no.

So, no, I don't support the anti-TPM clause
because I've deluded myself to think,
yeah, if we put in an anti-TPM clause,
that'll FORCE Microsoft to drop TPM.

Nor do I delude myself to think that
prohibiting software patents in GNU-GPL
code will make Microsoft stop getting
software patents.

But I do think that to allow softwarwe patents
and to allow DRM would grossly harm the copyleft
community that created the work. It would allow
a monopolization of the content in one way or
another, and that isn't good for Sam and the
others who are actually working on teh project.

And for that reason, I'm against software
patents and DRM being allowed to monopolize
some portion of copylefted works.

Take the Courage Vow
Pass it on.

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