Home page Latest blog

On the GPLv3

This section is part of something like a blog. To contact me or comment on this, see my email page.


Draft: Thoughts on the GPLv3 draft

Mako's notes on the GPL (via copyrighteous, which had a dumb comment image lockout last I checked). DRM and GPLv3 [FSFE] and Patents and GPLv3 [FSFE].

The GPLv3 Process

So far, there's been one conference. In the USA. Fortunately, there's a GPLv3 launch conference transcript from Irish Free Software Org.

Others are also being excluded, as seen in this post from a Busybox maintainer.

April: There are now transcripts of talks at the Australian National University and in Turin, Italy available online.

Ciaran O'Riordon will speak at a British Computer Society meeting in London on Friday 7 April 2006.

GPLv3 will probably also be discussed at a multinational free software conference in/near southern Austria.

June: From info-gplv3: The 3rd International GPLv3 Conference was held in Barcelona, Spain on June 22nd and 23rd, 2006, at the Centre de Cultura Contemporània de Barcelona (CCCB) . Some recordings and transcripts of this conference are now online. The schedule included presentations by Richard Stallman, Eben Moglen, and Georg Greve, as well as panels addressing the key issues of DRM, software patents, and license internationalization. Of course, I couldn't find any way to get there for those dates because of the relatively late announcement and prior commitments, but that seems to be a recurring theme with GPLv3 consultation.

Some discussions are being slowed by a problem at, as explained by Savannah Hackers.

All-party Parliamentary Internet Group and DRM

This item moved to Copyright page

Gowers Review

This item moved to Copyright page

Linus won't use GPLv3 as it stands

Not really a shock that the kernel as a whole won't be changing (tracking down all the v2-only contributors would be tricky) but an interesting Linus quote that echoes something I've raised before:

"I think it's insane to require people to make their private signing keys available, for example. I wouldn't do it. So I don't think the GPL v3 conversion is going to happen for the kernel, since I personally don't want to convert any of my code."

- Linus Torvalds, GPL V3 and Linux, 25 Jan 2006

<p class="silly">I wonder if he'll consider GPLv4 instead?</p>


  1. Steve Purkiss's commentary on the same incident

First comments

So the GPLv3 is out. Somehow, I can't motivate myself to wade through pages of legalese and make sensible comments until I feel happy that this won't be a repeat of the FDL "keep them in chains, hoping for freedom" discussion farce, or the WGIG "divide and conquer" that the process seems to be modelled on. I posted two to the GPLv3 wiki as a starter:

  • Who are the mysterious committees A, B, C, D and E at present?
  • Why has the GPLv3 Process been modelled on the terrible processes of the WGIG, instead of harnessing the free-software-friendly organisations already existing around the world?

While doing so, I noticed a cute trick: the FSF considers any posts to the GPLv3 Wiki as being released under the GPL-incompatible FDL 1.2. I muttered "Sod that!" and added a note granting more freedom.

To index.

This is copyright 2006 MJ Ray. See fuller notice on front page.