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FSF releases new draft of GPLv3 for discussion

by John Sullivan posted at 2007-03-28 16:26 last modified 2007-03-30 15:09

The Free Software Foundation has released a new discussion draft of the GNU General Public License, Version 3.

For the last eighteen years, the GPL has served as the main free software answer to proprietary licensing agreements used by companies like Microsoft.

As the GPL preamble says:

The licenses for most software and other practical works are designed to take away your freedom to share and change the works. By contrast, the GNU General Public License is intended to guarantee your freedom to share and change free software--to make sure the software is free for all its users.

In contrast, a typical Microsoft Vista EULA says:

The software is licensed, not sold. This agreement only gives you some rights to use the software. Microsoft reserves all other rights. Unless applicable law gives you more rights despite this limitation, you may use the software only as expressly permitted in this agreement. In doing so, you must comply with any technical limitations in the software that only allow you to use it in certain ways.

See the difference in attitude?

Revising the GPL—for the first time in fifteen years—has been a community process. The latest revision involved looking at over 600 comments from the public, plus two international conferences and the work of four dedicated discussion committees. The more people who are involved, the more likely GPLv3 will match the success of GPLv2. You can read about the changes and add your comments at

You can digg the story at

About this blog
The BadVista campaign, started in December 2006, advocated for the freedom of computer users, opposing adoption of Microsoft Windows Vista and promoting free (as in freedom) software alternatives. It declared victory in January 2009, with supporters moving on to do the same work against Windows 7.

You can support the campaign by joining the FSF.

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