[wp-hackers] WordPress and GPLv3

Otto otto at ottodestruct.com
Thu Dec 27 14:31:54 GMT 2007

On 12/26/07, Roy Schestowitz <r at schestowitz.com> wrote:
> How would you feel if a company began selling WordPress appliances that
> use unique hardware (e.g. special type of clusters) and are being
> developed by a group of 500 full-time developers (>Automattic+developer
> community)?

I would be absolutely thrilled. I think that it would be fantastic,
and I would encourage them every step of the way.

You seem to have the opinion that people selling things is bad. It's
not. People selling things is good. That's what creates the economy.
That's what lets you and me continue to eat.

> How would you feel if you were left behind because of those
> that took your code and 'enhanced' it are using uber-hardware with all
> kinds of disablement technologies? This is all far-fetched and
> hypothetic, but Oracle comes to mind (Linux and MySQL forks possible).

What kinds of "disablement technologies"? That makes no sense at all.
If you mean that you wouldn't be able to load your own software onto
the box, then I would understand it completely and even expect it.
This "appliance" is not a general purpose computer. It's an
"appliance". Do you want to be able to load new programming into your
refrigerator, or into your oven? The very notion of "appliance"
implies a lack of general purpose control.

> Translation: "I don't like Richard Stallman's definition of freedom. I
> like something different."

Yes, that's absolutely correct.

Here's the short of it: I don't release my software under GPLv3
because I WANT people to use my software to create new and innovative
things. That was the whole point. The software should be free. And it
is, under the GPLv2. It's less free under the GPLv3, because less
people are free to use it. How you can claim it to be more free when
it's impossible to use it in a wider variety of circumstances is
beyond me. And Stallman's interpretation of "free" contradicts all
other reasonable interpretations of it, so don't give me that crap.

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