Subject: Re: copyright questions
To: Ted Lemon <>
From: Jim Wise <>
List: current-users
Date: 06/13/1997 21:44:25
On Fri, 13 Jun 1997, Ted Lemon wrote:

> You already know that the NetBSD philosophy excludes GPL'd code in the
> kernel, and discourages it elsewhere, so you're just building up
> hypothetical castles and knocking them down - this is not
> constructive.

Not at all.  The point is simple:  A change this large in the license
terms of the code we all use should have been raised on the mailing
lists before being accepted in the tree.

> I will put it bluntly: you're not on core.  You're not a developer.
> Why on earth do you expect to be consulted on every policy decision
> that the NetBSD core team makes?  How would the core team *ever* get
> anything done if every such issue had to be debated openly on
> current-users before a decision was made?

This is ridiculous, IMHO.  Of course I am not asking that anyone but
core make this decision.  I have said that I have serious problems with
Chris's license terms, and I have likewise said that if core accepts
them then they are part of NetBSD whether I have problems with them or
not.  This does not change the fact that a change of this nature, which
has the potential to affect many users and potential users of NetBSD
should be announced and discussed on the mailing lists, just as other
recent changes, including the bus space and boot loader changes were
discussed before any interface was committed to, and just as the ATAPI
code, build process, and release process are being discussed now --
_before- they have an affect on the user community.  This is not asking
that anyone but core will make the final decision, but it seems clear,
for example, that core did not realize how big an issue Chris's license
changes would be (perhaps someone more qualified than myself can comment
on this?), and an announcement to current-users might well have eased a
lot of the hard feelings you are seeing...

> Look at the evidence before you!  This flame war will probably still
> be going on at Usenix, and the changes Chris has made to the
> copyright, whether you want to acknowledge it or not, are *trivial* to
> anybody who was already willing to act in good faith.  If core had
> consulted you on this issue, NetBSD on the alpha would be dead in the
> water!

It is not clear to me that you are reading my posts before responding.
I will be glad to continue this discussion in private mail, but it is
not clear to me that this type of attack serves any purpose in a public


				Jim Wise