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Posts published in “Copyright”

The DMCA as Ransomware

Actually, the incident reads more like vandalism than ransomware, but it still illustrates that the DMCA is bad law.

DMCA as ransomwareDMCA as ransomware
© User:Colin / Wikimedia Commons, via Wikimedia Commons

I’ll betcha never figured that one of the things you could do with a DMCA take down notice was use it as ransomware. In a case that proves that if you write bad law it’ll be exploited in more ways than you can imagine, that’s now been done. Forget the record and movie industries moves to take down innocent YouTube posts by misidentifying content as infringing — or misunderstanding fair use.

Should the Fair License Replace the GPL?

It seems to us that enterprises have adopted “permissive” licenses because they see them as a way to “have their cake and eat it too.”

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Roblimo’s Hideaway

The GPL has many good points, as well as restrictions that make it unappealing to many commercial software producers and users. Plus, over the years, it has accumulated tons of political baggage only marginally related to its utility as a software license. So should we consider the Fair License as a possible replacement? And, whether we like it or not, are permissive licenses — like the Fair License, BSD License, and MIT License taking over anyway?

Should the U.S. Army Have Its Own Open Source License?

Should the U.S. armed forces begin releasing software under an OSI approved open source license rather than as public domain?

Roblimo’s Hideaway

Army software open source licenseArmy software open source license

This question has generated many pixels’ worth of traffic on the OSI License discuss email list. This post is just a brief summary of a little of the discussion, which has been going on for some weeks and shows no sign of slowing down.

There are currently 80 Open Sourse Initiative-approved open source licenses. It’s nice that the Army (I’m a veteran) wants to not only write software licensed as open source, but OSI-approved open source software. (Go Army!)

But does the Army really need its own special OS license? Should the Air Force have a different one? Will the Navy want a Coastal Combat Open Source License, along with a separate Blue Water Open Source License? That might sound far-fetched, but Mozilla has three separate open source licenses, Microsoft has two, and Canada’s province of Québec also has three. So why shouldn’t the U.S. Department of Defense have a whole slew of open source licenses?