GPL version 4

From: Morton Harrow
Date: Wed Jul 16 2008 - 14:31:26 EST

Dear gentlemen (and included list-members),

Let me first introduce myself. My name is Morton Harrow, senior GNU/Linux consultant in the London metropolitan area. I have been around in the Open Source world since the early beginning. I am very happy with the spirit and efforts of the Free Software Foundation (FSF).

As the name mentions ?free?, one would think this organisation embraces real freedom. I can't help but feel that the FSF has made a mistake with the release of the third version of the GPL (GPLv3). This license restricts the freedom and usage of open source software for governments, companies and end-users alike.
Linking from other software which is not regarded by the FSF as free software, is not allowed by this license. I can't help but wonder if this is the freedom the FSF intensions. Real free should be that users are allowed link any software against GPL licensed software, without restrictions. But the current ?freedom? restricts the spirit of Richard M. Stallman's original vision on a free world.

We propose to release as soon as possible, version 4 of the General Public License.

The GPL version 4 will accept every other license, accepted by the Open Source Initiative as open source. Corporate usage of GPL released software should be possible without restrictions. Linking from closed source software to GPLv4 software and libraries will be permitted. GPLv4 software can be shipped in (commercial) closed source software. Only this and the original authors need to be mentioned. Also, I believe the copyright of the FSF software should be transferred to the United Nations. As ?human knowledge belongs to the world.?

Our planned release date of GPLv4 is 15th September 2008. The first software to be released under the terms of this new license, will be a continuation of the stalled ReiserFS project. As the FSF headers allow software to be released under the terms of the GPLv2 or higher, we will prepare automatic relicensing of GPLv2 and GPLv3 software to the GPLv4.

If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to contact me.

With kind regards,

Morton Harrow


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