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Old 05-24-2007, 02:31 PM   #1
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LXer: Study: Developers Do Not Want GPL 3 to Police Patents

Published at LXer:

A new Microsoft-funded study has found that open-source developers do not believe that licenses such as the upcoming GNU General Public License 3.0 should enforce software patents or prevent deals like the Microsoft-Novell patent agreement.

Old 05-24-2007, 04:19 PM   #2
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Although Microsoft paid for the Keystone staff that carried out the phone interviews for the study, the Redmond, Wash., software company "had no control over the questionnaire design or methodology, and certainly no control over the process of synthesizing themes in the data or the results that were found," MacCormack said.
Uh huh! So what control did MS have?

"We targeted key developers who have control over major chunks of the code base. These included 'module-owners' who retain the rights to decide what goes into the code base of major open-source projects including JBoss, Apache, the Linux kernel and related tools, MySQL, XenSource, and PostgreSQL," MacCormack said.
Aha! I wonder if MS suggested they concentrate on developers in the enterprise (corporate) FOSS arena; the folks desparately trying to monetize Linux.

"We did not target the top, 'household name' individuals who run the projects and get all the press, or the hundreds of contributors who contribute small amounts of code on a regular basis."
Of course not! And, is "hundreds" a realistic appraisal of this group?

"We felt that the 34 interviews were more than sufficient to conduct exploratory research to identify the predominant developer opinions on the most critical issues," he said.
Sure, as long as it's the "right" 34.

The study found that most respondents use open-source licenses to tap into the open-source development approach for their projects, and that their focus is on developing a great product rather than a moral imperative to ensure that all software was "free."
In other words, those 34 developers want their code debugged for free, so it'll be good enough to sell support contracts.

My overall comment, "GPL3 scares the s**t out of a corporate software industry accustomed to secrecy surrounding their code production. They are going to be forced to undergo a major shift in the paradigm.

Last edited by rickh; 05-25-2007 at 01:09 AM.
Old 05-24-2007, 11:57 PM   #3
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This is expected....I immediately recall the "get the facts" campaign, whose "study", flying in the face of all logic, found that it is actually cheaper to buy windows than it is to use a free OS with free community support.

Old 05-25-2007, 05:18 AM   #4
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Yeah....34 people (not GPL users even) are really reprisentative of thousands of FOSS developers...

I'm going to order a study about Windows' popularity and will interview people from Linux and Unix forums!
Old 05-25-2007, 08:11 AM   #5
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If only Microsoft were as good at producing software as they are at producing FUD.


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