Friday, June 10, 2011

GPL licensed code on the decline

There have been reports that the amount of code written and licensed in copyleft license, that is GNU GPL is on the decline. The entire public network is abuzz with this report. Whoever wrote the report wants to create FUD in the minds of "to be developers" and "contributing communities" regarding GNU GPL. The GNU GPL in my opinion is the most permissive license. It is permissive in the fact that it permits the continuous development of the initial source tree. It is permissive because it permits and paves the way for "not re-inventing the wheel". It is permissive because it permits the basic concept of the existence of human race, sharing and freedom. It is the only license which embodies the concept of freedom and sharing in the same body.

Richard M Stallman has a vision that users, in the near future would be made dumb by making them slaves to proprietary technologies and make every action of users robotic. His prophecy is that "freedom and sharing" as applied to software is the answer to the bullying of big corporations. As the world turns to software for innumerable tasks in human life, freedom and sharing are the human ideologies which would keep the required technology out in the open and approachable to all classes of people. Any future technology developed should be such that they should be based on open standards for the entire human fraternity to repair and upgrade it.

In this crusade of freeing software from the clutches of big corporations, GNU GPL is the open standard which the entire freedom software community should follow. The big corporations are free to package the GPLed software and sell it with improvements(to be given back to the community) to other big corporations. But, individuals, non-profit groups, families also should be self sufficient in computing. This ideological situation is possible if all the freedom developers and in fact, all developers start licensing their code with a GPL V3 and above license developed by the group headed by the visionary Richard M Stallman. His thoughts can be dismissed as completely theoretical and laughed at, but only future will tell what is in store for the computing services users in the near future. Community developers/contributors who give ideas/improvements/code-snippets to freedom software/propreitory software should license their code with GPL v3 and above. This will see to it that these contributions are always available to the "common man" who in the near future is a prospective developer/contributor.

Now, regarding the copyright assignment, I have re-iterated many a times that it is always a better, in fact, the best option to assign the copyright to the free software foundation. The free software foundation is built on very strict ideologies and I am pretty sure that there will not be any dual licensing model as other bigger corporations using freedom software are doing(canonical with ubuntu(future), IBM with websphere(thanx to FAiF podcast for this info) and ....). Assigning copyright ownership of any major code, code snippets, ideas to implement or improve to the big corporations, would lock them up in propreitory black box, thereby stopping further innovation and development and is against sharing and freedom.

I appeal to all the developers and contributors to PLEASE assign copyrights to the free software foundation and license it with GPL v3 and above and make GNU GPL once again, a force to reckon with.

Let the force be with all the freedom developers/contributors/idealists/supporters.

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Nobody can deter me away from "free as in freedom" concept seeded by Sri RMS. See to it that u dont make fun of my belief. If u think otherwise, no need to comment.