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* Posts by J. V. DeLong

1 post • joined 11 Apr 2007

Open sourcerers do battle for GPLv3

J. V. DeLong

Antitrust & GPLv3

The Wilder paper is actually pretty interesting. The defining characteristic of antitrust law is its relentless focus on consumer welfare. The GPL, it can be argued, affronts this in two ways: (1) Its focus on the desires of the producers at the expense of consumers -- thus the MSFT-NOVL deal is attacked despite its endorsement by the customers; (2) More importantly -- not only the FSF is involved. There are MANY very big commerical enterprises in this. Looking at the Linux Foundation's Board of Directors (http://www.linux-foundation.org/en/Board) should be enough to give any antitrust lawyer an anxiety attack. The real juice behind the open source movement has always been the money put in by companies that want to make the operating system a commodity so that they can get more of the revenues for their hardware and services. These companies are already very close to the antitrust cliff -- organizing an MSFT-NOVL boycott could put them over, droll as it might be to think of MSFT as an antitrust plaintiff.

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