Ok, I read the first GPLv3 draft. I foun...

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Ok, I read the first GPLv3 draft. I found multiple problems, some good, some quite bad:


  • Section 2 - The output from running it is covered by this License only if the output, given its content, constitutes a work based on the Program.: does this mean that documents written in Abiword is covered by GPL? (Edit: I misread the sentence here, it really states just the oposite of what I thought :P)
  • Section 3 - Regardless of any other provision of this License, no permission is given to distribute covered works that illegally invade users' privacy, nor for modes of distribution that deny users that run covered works the full exercise of the legal rights granted by this License.: does this mean that one can not make a locked down system where users can not write outside the homedir, make /home a separate partition and mount it with noexec parameter thus denying all simple users the right of running modified versions of these programs (at least on this system)?
  • Section 4. - You may copy and distribute verbatim copies of the Program's source code as you receive it, in any medium, provided that you conspicuously and appropriately publish on each copy an appropriate copyright
    notice;
    : does that mean that I have to write "Copyright by this and that and this and that and this and that" on every CD that I record in my home to give to my friends? It sounds as bad as the original BSD advertisement clause.
  • Section 5.b - You must license the entire modified work, as a whole, under this License to anyone who comes into possession of a copy.: I suggest adding "legally" before "comes", because otherwise, for example, if a company is making an internal modification of a GPL program with some secret information embedded into the code (some very internal communication routine, passwords, codes, ...) and some industrial thief steals this modified code for a blackhat hacker, he can claim that he "came into possession of a copy" and thus he has all the legal rights use it and that no trade secret laws can apply.
  • in some places "Corresponding Source" is used instead of "Complete Corresponding Source Code" (Edit: I was pointed to a place in the middle of the licence where "CS" is defined equal to "CCSC". Still, not the best style - either declare that upfront or use one style trough the document)
  • Section 9. - it is not clearly stated that using the covered work indicates acceptance of the Licence, but it is explicitly stated for modification and propagation.
  • Section 13. - I really do not like geographic limitations. Anyone can state "this program has a progress bar, which is patented in USA, so you can not use it in USA unless you have the patent" for basically any program thus very easily discriminating against quite a few people. If it is illegal by other means, leave it be illegal by those means - do not impose additional illegality on it via copyright. Law in some countries and patent situation can change more easily then the licence for old free software projects with many contributors.


I have not yet read any comments from either FSF or any other people and I am not a lawyer, but I hope that these problems will be fixed in next drafts.

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