Dr. Seuss, licensing, and WINE

Brett Glass brett at lariat.org
Sat Feb 9 15:15:14 CST 2002

Plato (tom at redant.freeserve.co.uk) writes:

>> Give me a break dude.  Yes, the FSF wants all software to be free and 
>> wants to rid the world of commercial software altogether.
>I think it is worth pointing out the the Free Software Foundation does *not*
>want to rid the world of commercial software.
>Stallman has, however, stated that he would like to rid the world of
>*proprietary* software.

Richard Stallman most certainly does want to rid the world of all
commercial software. He says so in many of his essays.

One of Stallman's propaganda techniques, alas, has been to refer to
commercial software as "proprietary" software. He does this because
the word "proprietary" has negative connotations. He hopes to co-opt 
those connotations so as to convince others to join him in his drive 
to destroy all commercial software.

To set the record straight:

Software is "proprietary" if it does not interoperate with other software,
does not conform to industry standards, and/or uses unique file formats 
or protocols so as to lock users in or deter competition.

Software is "commercial" (that is, the object of commerce) if it is
licensed for money. GPLed software cannot be commercial because it
cannot be licensed for money (the GPL prohibits this). You can sell
a disc with GPLed software on it, but only the plastic disc is a
commercial product -- not the code it contains.

--Brett Glass

More information about the wine-devel mailing list