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3/30/2007
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GPL: Third Time's The Charm?

The third iteration of the third version of the General Public License backs off -- a little bit -- on some of its more controversial aspects.


The Controversy Over GPL 3

The Controversy Over GPL 3

The Free Software Foundation released the third, and most likely final, draft of the third version of the General Public License for comment last week and, as expected, it incorporates controversial provisions concerning digital rights management, patents, and software as a service. The GPL governs the use of open source software. The third version has been a hot topic since the first draft was floated by the FSF early last year. Linux kernel creator Linus Torvalds has indicated he might not adhere to GPL3.

The third version is narrower in some of its prohibitions, says Mark Radcliffe of DLA Piper and general counsel of the Open Source Initiative, such as the ban on DRM technology, which has evolved to simply addressing situations in which DRM might prevent people from exercising their rights under the GPL.

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