[CentOS] RHEL on The Pirate Bay, Mininova, etc

Sat Mar 22 22:26:07 UTC 2008
Stephen John Smoogen <smooge at gmail.com>

On Sat, Mar 22, 2008 at 2:10 PM, Ray Van Dolson <rayvd at bludgeon.org> wrote:
> On Sat, Mar 22, 2008 at 04:01:13PM -0400, R P Herrold wrote:
>  > On Sat, 22 Mar 2008, Ray Van Dolson wrote:
>  >
>  >> What we need is a case that's been taken to court and a verdict given.
>  >> :)
>  >
>  > umm -- Istrongly disagree.
>  >
>  > There are services sold by people called 'lawyers' whom sell authoritative
>  > analysis, guidance, and answers they'll stand behind as a professional to
>  > questions like this;  all a court case would do is settle one set of facts
>  > as interpreted to their license document, and open the door to the next
>  > one. It also carries the explicit transaction costs of prosecuting such a
>  > suit, and the 'softer' potential reputational damage in a skitterish FOSS
>  > community.
>  It would certainly set a precedent which definitely carries a lot of
>  weight in subsequent similar cases.

It can or can-not. It depends greatly on how large the case is, and
what the judgement says. In most cases, judgements are restricted to
small sections of a disagreement and do not have large precedent
bearing items. And in many cases where the plaintiff wins in a
contractual dispute, it is worded in a way that the defendant could
actually argue the case is closed for all other similar cases.
Remember, in a case between 2 lawyers and a judge you can end up with
at least 6 different ways to read the decision in the next case.

And in this case, the precedents of hundreds years of contractual law
would have to be overturned. The GPL license covers source code
access. The RHEL license covers binary access without restricting your
rights towards source code.

>  And you assume too much about my or other's motives.  I think it's a
>  fair question even in an academic sense whether or not we should or
>  should not be allowed to redistribute RHEL.  However, probably a
>  prickly topic so perhaps best not discussed here. :)

Its  fair question, but can only answered for the individual asking it
by a licensed attorney under contract to that individual. And then
that advice would still only be accurate if a court decided in the
favor of the lawyers opinion in case the individual took it to court.
And then that court decision would only be considered precedent if it
was written that way. And that would only count if it was upheld on
appeal. And even then it might only matter in some particular time,
place, and placing of a comma on one particular version of a contract.
Everything else is a debating exercise :(.

Stephen J Smoogen. -- CSIRT/Linux System Administrator
How far that little candle throws his beams! So shines a good deed
in a naughty world. = Shakespeare. "The Merchant of Venice"