Dr. Seuss, licensing, and WINE

Brett Glass brett at lariat.org
Fri Feb 8 23:30:08 CST 2002

At 04:57 PM 2/8/2002, Andreas Mohr wrote:

>Sure (which I didn't address in my explanation)
>I merely wanted to drive home the point that that EVERY CENT part is wrong.

The "every cent" part is absolutely true. Let me explain why via a
simple scenario. Let's suppose, for a minute, that the user first
obtained WINE for free (as he certainly could do!) and then bought
an add-on enhancement package made by the third party vendor. This
package contains none of the original WINE code -- just patches.

I'm sure you'll agree that, in this scenario, the only thing that 
the user paid for was the enhancements, not WINE itself. Again, 
every cent that the user paid was for the enhancements.

Now, the only difference between this scenario and shipping a
modified version of WINE is that, in the latter case, the vendor
is making things a bit more convenient for the user. Nothing
whatsoever wrong with that.

To put it another way: To claim that the vendor who provides
enhancements to WINE is "making money off of" WINE is akin to
claiming that a company that makes accessories for cars --
say, fuzzy dice -- is "making money off of" the automobile
manufacturer because it is enhancing the manufacturer's car.
Just as anyone has the right to make and sell fuzzy dice, anyone
should have the right to sell enhancements for WINE. Since 
WINE is available to anyone at no cost, what the user is paying 
for, if s/he buys a disc with the enhancements already integrated,
is the enhancements.

Do these analogies make things clearer?


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