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2005 Apr 01 16:16

The following is an archive of a post made to our 'vox-tech mailing list' by one of its subscribers.

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Re: [vox-tech] Urgent news: Linux may be relicensed
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Re: [vox-tech] Urgent news: Linux may be relicensed



På fredag, 01 april 2005, skrev Peter Jay Salzman:
> On Fri 01 Apr 05, 10:56 AM, Micah Cowan said:
> > Bob Scofield wrote:
> > >I can't find anything about this on the CNN website.  And judging from the 
> > >two replies to this message I don't know if this is serious.
> > 
> > It wasn't. I was almost willing to accept it at first, but even then, I 
> > knew one simple fact: no matter what Linus' intentions might be, it is 
> > legally impossible for him (or anyone else) to relicense Linux as 
> > anything other than GPL. This is because he doesn't own the Linux source 
> > code: only a small fraction of it, basically. That and the trademarked 
> > name "Linux", itself. In order to change the lincese, the entire 
> > community of everyone who ever contributed source code to Linux would 
> > have to agree with the move, which is of course logistically impossible.
> > 
> > Happy April Fool's Day! :-)
> > 
> > -Micah
> 
> Heh.  The prankster speaks.  This morning, I woke up (much earlier than all
> of you since I'm on the east coast now), and read /. with my morning coffee.
> 
> There was an article about Brittanica taking over Wikipedia.  The article
> was _really_ well written.  I became incensed and started planning on how to
> drum up support for wikipedia.  I went over the main site to see if there
> was anything I could do to help out.
> 
> Then I saw the picture of Encyclopedia Brittanica "agents" with semi
> automatic weapons and combat gear.  At that point, it dawned on me today was
> April 1st.  That set the gears in motions...

Do you have a URL that you could share? The prank seems to have been taken
down already.

The Linux relicencing hoax had me going for a few moments too :-) because it
is in fact based on a kernel of truth: Linux is licensed under the GPL,
version 2 (i.e., 2 and 2 only, not "version 2 or at your option any later
version" as most GPL-licensed code is). This means that Linux will not
migrate to GPL version 3 when it becomes available because it will not be
feasible to obtain agreement from all code contributors to do so. This issue
was recently discussed by the Debian developers. See:

<http://lists.debian.org/debian-news/debian-news-2005/msg00012.html>

-- 
Henry House
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