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Re: OReilly on Allchin vs RMS

On Fri, Mar 02, 2001 at 02:41:05PM +0530, did Binand Raj S. write:
> Arun Sharma forced the electrons to say:
> > I'm sure if it becomes a big enough issue to be tested in the courts,
> > the US courts will certainly rule that using GPL for tax payer money
> > is illegal.
> I'm not sure I understand this point - if the taxpayer's money was used to
> develop software, then isn't it morally wrong (if not legally) to allow
> a few corporations to take the software developed using the taxpayer's
> money and sell the same back to him/her at inflated prices? Without
> letting the taxpayer see/understand what his/her money has been used
> for? Am I typing clearly here?

I'm a bit put off by the term 'morally wrong'.

You are correct in saying that software developed with tax payer money
belongs to the entire nation.  That precisely is why GPL-ing it is a
problem.  You see Corprorations pay taxes too.  BSD-ing a piece of software
developed using taxpayer money (or placing it in the public domain) is the
best possible thing.  On the one had it ensures that the software that was
developed remains open/free for the people who paid for it.  And the
corporations are given the chance to take this software and make
modificiations to it and be given incentives (in keeping the chnages

> I remember reading somewhere that some large open source projects (I
> don't remember which, but I have a feeling that X is one) are funded by
> the government of US (various departments), and thus cannot be closed
> source - because of this "tax payer's money" angle.

The X software is licensed under a non-GPL open license.  Viz. the MIT


pub  1024R/9B7FE6BD 1998-03-25 Sudhakar Chandrasekharan <thaths@xxxxxxxxx>
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