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Wallace's Second Anti-GPL Suit Loses

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 8 years ago | from the e-for-effort dept.

GNU is Not Unix 303

Enterprise OpenSource Magazine is reporting that Daniel Wallace's second Anti-GPL lawsuit has gone down in flames. From the (short) article: "The judge wrote that 'Antitrust laws are for 'the protection of competition, not competitors.' In this case, the GPL benefits consumers by allowing for the distribution of software at no cost, other than the cost of the media on which the software is distributed. 'When the plaintiff is a poor champion of consumers, a court must be especially careful not to grant relief that may undercut the proper function of antitrust.' Because he has not identified an anticompetitive effect, Wallace has failed to allege a cognizable antitrust injury.'"

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303 comments

Wallace was wearing the wrong trousers... (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15376320)

Judges stand up for consumer shocker.

Read all about it!

Re:Wallace was wearing the wrong trousers... (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15376518)

So how do we get this Judge on the Supreme Court?

Re:Wallace was wearing the wrong trousers... (0, Offtopic)

goldaryn (834427) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376670)

^^^ Mod parent up..

Heck, put him/her on the Supreme court too!

Re:Wallace was wearing the wrong trousers... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15376668)

my ass is sweaty

Re:Wallace was wearing the wrong trousers... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15376724)

SO now we have competing rulings since the much of the Microsoft ruling was based on protecting the competators not the consumer.

Laughed out of court (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15376328)

This is what it means to be "laughed out of court".

Crap link in submission... (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15376341)

If you're interested then have at these instead:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Daniel_Wallace_(plain tiff) [wikipedia.org]
http://www.groklaw.net/article.php?story=200603202 01540127 [groklaw.net]

Re:Who is Wallace and why did he sue? (5, Informative)

vertinox (846076) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376437)

The Wiki article isn't too informative and I'm kind of late to the game... I mean we know he sued because he doesn't like GPL, but why doesn't he like GPL? Does he own a closed sourcesoftware buseinss that was trying to compete with Linux? Or is he a paid shill? Or did RMS insult him at a comic book convention? Maybe Linus wrote a scathing reply to his ponies request inclusion to the Linux kernel?

The Wiki and other articles is very uninformative of who this guy is and his motivations and why he would even go out of his way to this. It is like the man spontaneously came into existence just to sue.

Although people have sued other over less...

speculating (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15376508)

No one can claim that GPL hasn't been upheld in court anymore. Was this his goal?

Re:speculating (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15376631)

The GPL's terms have hardly been upheld through these cases, it's only been shown that the GPL isn't anti-competitive. Small difference, no?

Re:Who is Wallace and why did he sue? (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15376525)

Wallace is a Physicist who looked at the BSD licence. Basically here is what I can piece together went on in his twisted brain.

"Oooh, look, I can take this, change some strings in it so it says 'WallaceOS' and sell it as a green screen command line OS for shitloads of money per copy, distributing it under a licence so my suckers...er customers can't redistrubite it, and so I don't have to give out the source code."

"WTF... nobody's buying my really cool WallaceOS? WTF there's this thing called Linux that is soooo much better under a licence called the GPL that keeps people from doing what I'm trying to do with BSD? That's anticompetative!!! "

"I must sue the Free Software Foundation and remove this evil thing called Linux and the GPL. It doesn't seem to matter that the FSF has nothing to do with the Linux kernel... only the GNU part of the OS, but who cares.... with the GPL gone, people will buy my l33t WallaceOS for whatever money I want to charge and I'll beeeee riiiiich!!!! I just hope they never hear about FreeBSD!"

Re:Who is Wallace and why did he sue? (5, Interesting)

mangu (126918) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376527)

All I could find about him in Google is that he is a physics teacher and a member of the FSF. This raises the question: did he lose on purpose? The whole thing was done so ineptly and without apparent motivation to win that one wonders if he's just trying to work some judicial precedent for the GPL.

Re:Who is Wallace and why did he sue? (2, Insightful)

Alphager (957739) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376551)

Source for this one, please ? I'm in the Fellowship of the Free Software Foundation Europe; i can't believe the FSF set something up.

Re:Who is Wallace and why did he sue? (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15376650)

He used to be a member of the FSF but that was
long ago.

The last few years he has been in any board he could get into trying to prove the GPL wouldn't have a chance in a court of law and, basically, being laughed at.

He probably couldn't take the laughs any more and he tried to prove he was right.

Re:Who is Wallace and why did he sue? (2, Funny)

khallow (566160) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376697)

That's a painful way to find out you're wrong.

Re:Who is Wallace and why did he sue? (2, Interesting)

Matt Perry (793115) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376532)

I mean we know he sued because he doesn't like GPL, but why doesn't he like GPL? Does he own a closed sourcesoftware buseinss that was trying to compete with Linux? Or is he a paid shill? Or did RMS insult him at a comic book convention? Maybe Linus wrote a scathing reply to his ponies request inclusion to the Linux kernel?
Here's another possibility. Maybe he wanted to lose so that the decision would make it onto the books, thereby strengthening the position of the GPL via existing case law. I'm not a lawyer but I would think that every little decision in the right direction helps.

Re:Who is Wallace and why did he sue? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15376634)

That's probably because there are no reliable sources on who this guy is and what his motivation is. About the only things we know are: (1) he has a degree in physics; (2) he's retired; (3) he used to be an FSF member. Everything else is speculation.

Re:More about DW (1)

gerrysteele (927030) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376690)

He seems to have been a very prolific troll over on http://search.gmane.org/?email=daniel+wallace&sort =date [gmane.org]

On another gmane post http://article.gmane.org/gmane.comp.licenses.open- source.general/2073/match=/ [gmane.org] he describes himself:

I wish to thank you for responding to my musings. I am a retired physicist with little to do but ponder things in my spare time.
It would explain a lot of things:
  • Why someone actually uses the crappy email address from their ISP
  • Why he seems to be so legally clueless
  • Senility might be the only excuse for anyone being this stupid

Re:More about DW (1)

gerrysteele (927030) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376714)

Forgot to include this little nugget:

http://www.linuxtoday.com/news_story.php3?ltsn=200 3-12-12-020-26-OS-CD-CY-0003/ [linuxtoday.com]

"If you still insist on flaming me, you should know that I have powerful friends in Washington, Beijing and Moscow."

Said Mr Wallace. Scary! Why would someone who Sues against the GPL be a member of the FSF? What a complete, total, utter MORON!

Re:More about DW (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15376755)

"... he's been investing in research and development of "computer programs in order to prepare a compact computer operating system for test marketing" of a "command line system" intended "for use with computational physics programs and numerical analysis involving scientific modeling."

Competitors. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15376343)

"From the (short) article: "The judge wrote that 'Antitrust laws are for 'the protection of competition, not competitors.'"

So what does that say about the Microsoft antitrust case brought up by the likes of Netscape and others?

Re:Competitors. (3, Insightful)

kfg (145172) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376485)

That would be "nothing."

The real issue in the Microsoft case was leveraging monopoly powers in a criminally coercive manner, with hints of fraud (as per the DR DOS case), not the mere bundling of the browser with the OS for "free."

Unfair competition, not the perfectly legitimate competition of offering something cheaper/free.

KFG

Nothing, really (4, Informative)

Moraelin (679338) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376500)

""From the (short) article: "The judge wrote that 'Antitrust laws are for 'the protection of competition, not competitors.'"

So what does that say about the Microsoft antitrust case brought up by the likes of Netscape and others?
"

IANAL, but AFAIK, it doesn't say anything was wrong, really. They too had to prove in court that not only MS is hurting competition, but also that it hurts the consumer.

I.e., in a nutshell the gist of it is that you can't go and say "I can't compete with company X. Make them raise their prices, so I have a chance." What you have to prove is that first and foremost this has hurt the consumers (e.g., company X is in a position to shamelessly gouge its customers, or companies X and Y aggreed to fix their prices high, or it has some other effect that consumers obviously don't want) and in which way are they creating an artifficial barrier, i.e., other than for example price or brand name, that keeps others from competing.

So in that MS antitrust case, yes, they had to argue that:

A) MS's monopoly is hurting the consumers (e.g., that the cost of a MS OS has been steadily rising in the same time interval where the cost of the computer itself has been steadily dropping. And since at the time it was just short of impossible to buy a computer without Windows, that was an ever-increasing burden upon consumers as a whole.) and

B) that there is an artifficial barrier in the way of anyone trying to compete with MS. The keyword being "anyone", not "me". As was said, those laws are to protect competition, not one or two competitors. That's why for example MS was able to use Linux as an example of "but we still have competitors in the OS arena", although it wasn't the product of Netscape and the other.

You may notice that the same applies to this lawsuit too. See the other quote in the summary, about the GPL allowing people to get programs extremely cheaply. It's not part of the same "protecting the competition" reasoning, but addressing the other (more important) point: then it hasn't hurt the consumer. Without that, you don't really have an anti-trust case.

Re:Competitors. (2, Informative)

SillyNickName4me (760022) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376509)

So what does that say about the Microsoft antitrust case brought up by the likes of Netscape and others?

Microsoft's actions were directly intended to reduce competition and choice for the consumer.

Offering Explorer as a free browser was not the problem, tying it in with Windows in the way that they did was the problem.

Poor Guy (4, Funny)

Ohreally_factor (593551) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376350)

He has had no luck with anything since he broke up with Grommit.

Cheesey Legal Arguments ... (1)

rewinn (647614) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376694)

... Wallace couldn't resist.

FP! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15376354)

as in fifth post! WOOOOOOT

Interesting take at Groklaw (5, Insightful)

PingXao (153057) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376386)

"If you can't find a lawyer willing to represent you, it usually means you don't have a case."

That may be true for this case, but more often than not it means you can't afford the lawyer's fees whether you've got a case or not. Justice and the legal process are things that are for sale in the United States these days. If you've got a small business there are any number of silly lawsuits your enemies can bring against you that will bleed you dry in legal fees alone. And that's for DEFENDING yourself against a bogus complaint, never mind prosecuting a case where you know you're in the right.

Re:Interesting take at Groklaw (4, Interesting)

Ohreally_factor (593551) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376487)

There's this thing called contingency fees. If you have a decent case, you can find an attorney who will take the case for a percentage of any judgement or settlement you receive.

If your case is crap, it's unlikely that you will find such a lawyer. You might not think your case is crap, but trust me on this, if you can't find a lawyer to represent you on contingency, it's crap.

If the stakes are not high enough to interest a lawyer, there's this other thing called Small Claims Court. In Small Claims, there is a level playing field, because the other side is not allowed to hire a lawyer to represent them in court. Similarly, you are not allowed to use a lawyer to sue in small claims.

Anyway, what alternatives would you suggest to fix these perceived issues with the justice system? The system is not perfect, but I have yet to see a proposal that isn't worse than the problem it purports to address.

Re:Interesting take at Groklaw (2, Insightful)

DAldredge (2353) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376505)

I am owed a few thousand dollars by an out of state client that refuses to pay. I have a case, documents and phone calls to give me an iron clad case yet I can not afford to take it to trial as the lawyers fees would be more than the settlement.

Small claims is out due to the amount owed.

Re:Interesting take at Groklaw (1)

really? (199452) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376544)

Would a "plus costs" verdict not take care of that? Just wondering...

Re:Interesting take at Groklaw (1)

Mprx (82435) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376549)

If it's really so iron clad why can't you represent yourself?

Re:Interesting take at Groklaw (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15376768)

Because DAlredge is an idiot? He is most likely making up the who story just to get attention.

Sorry for bagging on you, but... (1)

IANAAC (692242) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376578)

Depending on the state, the statutory limit in small claims could be as high as 5 grand. For the cost of a plane ticket, I'd much rather take that, than complain that lawyer fees are more than any settlement. Recoup what you can. You're running a business.

Re:Interesting take at Groklaw (1)

jcr (53032) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376783)

There's this thing called contingency fees. If you have a decent case, you can find an attorney who will take the case for a percentage of any judgement or settlement you receive.

Not quite... If you have a decent case, and you have a reasonable prospect of recovering enough in damages from the defendant to make it worth the attorney's time, then you might be able to find an attorney who'll take the case.

-jcr

No.... (1)

www.sorehands.com (142825) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376563)

There are somepeople who believe they can handle it as well as an attorney. There are some cases that are on the cutting edge and some attorneys don't like to take chances.

On contingency cases, attorneys take them because they are likely to win and collect. Not just win.

stupid (3, Insightful)

joe 155 (937621) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376388)

this suit was manifestly stupid. What he was claiming was that because someone is cheeper they are damaging the market. Is this not exactly the same as all companies - they are as cheep as they can afford to be in order to gain business from other companies? did he want to stop that - because it would have. Further, if the case went through and won it would mean that nothing could be given away for free, and possibly that the internet is illegal because it takes away from the market for books on the subject.
If this had won it would have literally killed the economy and taken it back to the dark-ages.

Re:stupid (0)

babbling (952366) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376534)

Calm down. He lost.

Judge, not only made correct decision, but gets it (5, Interesting)

Mostly a lurker (634878) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376391)

What surprises me is not that Wallace was laughed out of court. That was almost certain for various reasons. What did surprise me is that the judge's comments showed that he really understood the GPL and its role in ensuring a competitive marketplace.

Re:Judge, not only made correct decision, but gets (1)

gaijin99 (143693) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376735)

Well, despite the fact that the GPL is directly related to software, it doesn't really take any understanding of software, computers, etc to understand its legal implications. I'd assume that, since the guy was a judge, he understands copyright law, and that's really all you need to understand to get the GPL.

Re:Judge, not only made correct decision, but gets (5, Insightful)

19thNervousBreakdown (768619) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376797)

I think that you'll find most judges get the GPL. These are guys that have been lawyers for 20 years, and are generally able to understand insanely complex contracts and licenses that would twist our brains. The GPL must be a breath of fresh air to them, a license that not only doesn't even try to screw the people who accept it over, but that is the equivalent of a well-commented hundred line program. I expect that most judges are able to look at the GPL and think of things in minutes that you or I didn't see after knowing the GPL for years, and imagine how refreshing it must be to see those concepts in print and being used.

Re:Judge, not only made correct decision, but gets (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15376804)

GPL has nothing to do with the marketplace. Its just a political document that states you want to give your code out for free with no direct economic benefit to the creator..

In other words... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15376393)

We have freedom from *high* prices, not *low* prices.

Reprinted by SYS-CON Media from Client Server News (2, Interesting)

merc (115854) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376395)

It must have chaffed MOG's hyde to print this news. I do have to give her points for writing the facts of the case for once instead of anti-IBM FUD.

As for Wallace, he is a fucking crackpot and now everyone in the IT industry knows it.

What? (-1, Troll)

blair1q (305137) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376396)

Dumping at a value less than the cost of production (if you think coders' time is free, you're not much of a coder) isn't anticompetitive?

This judge may have just vacated a couple of hundred trade laws...

Re:What? (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15376419)

Dumping at a value less than the cost of production (if you think coders' time is free, you're not much of a coder) isn't anticompetitive?

Oh cool! You're on your way to a "+5 Troll". I haven't seen one in a Looonng time!

Also, it's not "dumping" unless it's:

Coming from another country.

And, the industry that's "victimized" has a shit load of political clout - Agriculture, Auto and Steel as examples.

Re:What? (1)

blair1q (305137) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376607)

The fact that no American company has attempted to corner an American market through dumping in a long time is testament to the fact that judges usually recognize dumping when they see it.

However, check recent stories about Citgo giving heating oil away for reduced prices in northeast towns this past winter. They did it to embarass the Bush administration, but their competitors started crying that they were dumping.

We can only hope that the real facts in this case are that the plaintiff merely bollixed the proof portion of his claim of dumping, and not that the judge just said that dumping isn't anticompetitive.

Re:What? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15376420)

First of all, loss leaders are not illegal, and not necessarily anticompetitive.

But in this case the product/service isn't even being sold below cost. Something like Linux was produced mostly by non-employees of the companies in question. IBM, Novel, and Red Hat charge a price based on how much effort they put into writing code, validating code, and providing support. There is nothing anticompetitive about that.

Re:What? (2, Insightful)

blair1q (305137) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376628)

loss leaders are not illegal, and not necessarily anticompetitive.

That depends on the goal of the loss-leader. If it's to induce collateral purchases and thus still gain a net profit on the gross total, then the effect is not a loss to corner a market.

But unless you're new to "Free Software" you know that the whole point is to compete with and hopefully end un-free software.

And Linus Torvalds has been employed by someone for most of his Linux-kernel-writing career. The true fact is that there is an enormous value input to the body of "free software" and as nobody is attempting to recoup that value, it's being dumped. Not disposed of, because it intends to continue production. The only real question is, who do you sue for that? The person who's giving away the copy that competes with your product. It's up to them to sue the person who gave it to them. Eventually, it gets back to the person who paid for the labor and gave the product away for free.

Re:What? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15376803)

And how would this harm the consumer? Mr Wallace?

Sir, are you an idiot? (5, Funny)

rajafarian (49150) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376430)

I read your post half a dozen times or so and but I can't tell. Do you charge your loved one for making her happy? (I know, I know, I'm making a few assumptions here.)

Re:Sir, are you an idiot? (0, Flamebait)

blair1q (305137) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376570)

I read your post half a dozen times or so and but I can't tell. Do you charge your loved one for making her happy? (I know, I know, I'm making a few assumptions here.)

No. Of course not. I keep the price low so she won't have another reason to think my competitors are superior.

Which means you're the idiot. And a lousy lay.

Re:What? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15376438)

Dumping at a value less than the cost of production (if you think coders' time is free, you're not much of a coder) isn't anticompetitive?

That's right, like us "dumping" our opinions on the market instead of charging for them like professional opinion writers. Or people singing for the fun of it and letting others listen. Not to mention those evil people who don't charge for sex. They should all be in prison.

Re:What? (0, Flamebait)

blair1q (305137) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376633)

That's right, like us "dumping" our opinions on the market instead of charging for them like professional opinion writers.

That presumes your opinion had any value when it was created.

I submit that it clearly does not.

Re:What? (1)

schleyfox (826198) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376757)

John Dvorak, QED

Re:What? (5, Insightful)

Qzukk (229616) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376442)

(if you think coders' time is free, you're not much of a coder)

Next thing you know, Dockers will be suing women for sewing for free. After that, the association of starving artists will be suing preschoolers for giving their parents free drawings to hang on their refrigerator.

If you think crayons and fingerpaints are free, you're not much of an artist.

Re:What? (0, Troll)

blair1q (305137) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376583)

I love watching you dolts totally miss the point.

One woman sewing will not compete on the scale of Dockers.

But if Dockers was paying $4.75/hr in America and China could pay its workers $0.80/hr, then dump them in the American market at a price below that cost, Dockers would have a complaint.

This has been done hundreds of times [google.com] and is a cornerstone of world trade negotiations.

P.S. Giving your code away for free is stealing from your own retirement.

Re:What? (4, Insightful)

Qzukk (229616) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376658)

One woman sewing will not compete on the scale of Dockers.

So? How many does it take? How many grandmas have to knit little mittens for their grandchildren before baby-clothes manufacturers feel the competition? How many people must cook dinner for their families before McDonalds starts feeling the pressure? How many kids must run lemonade stands at rates far below market costs before Minute Maid goes out of business?

How many programmers must work on GPLd code before Microsoft does more than twitch?

Giving your code away for free is stealing from your own retirement.

Explain.

Re:What? (2, Insightful)

honkycat (249849) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376731)

I think you're missing the point. This is clearly not illegally anticompetitive. I am free to do anything I want and give it away or sell it for any price I want to set. It doesn't matter what it cost me -- if I want to lose money on the transaction, I am free to do so. No one can tell me my price is too low. If I'm "stealing from my own retirement," that's my own business.

As the judge points out, laws against price fixing are in place to protect the consumer from artificially high prices due to the absence of competition. They aren't there to ensure that competitors can make money.

Furthermore, I think you'd be hard pressed to show that it's truly anticompetitive in any sense of the word, not just legally. As the non-free OS vendors like to point out, an OS ends up costing a lot more than the price of its license. Making that license free lowers the cost, but does not make it zero. There is still business opportunity.

Don't believe me? Then just ask how there are Linux companies still in business? Yeah, they're giving away their OS license for free, but they're still generating revenue. Further, the fact that they're giving it away for free is not pricing anyone out of the market -- Windows and OSX seem to be selling just fine.

Re:What? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15376758)

No, but when I start my business selling and supporting Open Source it will be stealing from your retirement, but I don't care because you're clearly not good enough to fend for yourself in this big bad world. I mean you couldn't even get paid as a professional Troll (They exist) because you're crap at that, too. Why do you think you're entitled to get paid for everything you clearly suck at? I can't stand freeloading scum like you.

Re:What? (4, Insightful)

Kjella (173770) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376498)

Dumping at a value less than the cost of production (if you think coders' time is free, you're not much of a coder) isn't anticompetitive?

Nope. The list is too long to even mention but I think you can start with:
Local theater group doing show without pay (professional actors)
Volunteers at a soup kitchen (the local cafe)
Laywers taking cases pro bono (other lawyers)
Doctors providing free medical aid (other doctors)
Any number of arts and crafts that people sell at less than real cost on fairs and the like
Every local band who can't make a living out of it but plays anyway
Every sort of artist who doesn't make a living out of it, but does it anyway
Every sort of "scratch-an-itch" programmer who doesn't make a living out of it, but does it anyway

Anti-trust requires that there has to be sort of monopolizing intent - that you want to pressure the competitors out of the market, then raise the prices afterwards. In fact, it typically has to go beyond pure pricing (e.g. Wal-Mart killing local shops, McDonalds killing local burger shop) and more on to discrimination and misuse of market power. How can you do that with the GPL? You can't, because there's noone who has that power, not even Linus himself. He couldn't turn around and say "Haha suckers! Now that Linux is the only OS in existance, I'll close it up and become the new Microsoft."

Re:What? (1)

blair1q (305137) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376566)

If you don't think most Linux developers see Linux as a "Windows Killer" you're very, very mistaken.

Re:What? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15376582)

Yeah, but the only thing they can do to get rid of Windows is improve their product. In a sense that is the purest competition.

Re:What? (1)

Alphager (957739) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376718)

I don't think any of the Kernel-Developers see Linux as a Windows-Killer. Better suited for them? Hell yes ! Better suited for the unwashed masses ? Don't think so

Re:What? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15376777)

If you think sex is free, you're not much of a whore.

Re:What? (5, Insightful)

Aim Here (765712) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376526)

How wrong can you be, let me count the ways.

"Dumping"

Dumping implies that the costs can be recouped later by raising prices. In the case of GPL'ed software, the GPL implies the distributor has no monopoly on the distribution so he can't raise his own prices after he 'destroys' the competition and expect the market to let him recoup the costs that way. His competitors can just keep dishing out the same GPL'ed code at the old price.

"at a value less than the cost of production"

The cost of production of someone else's GPLed software is next to nothing. The marginal cost of software distributed on the internet, even the stuff you yourself write, is next to nothing (and marginal cost, or similar measures of cost is generally the measure used for antitrust claims). At least three of the defendants in his lawsuits will happily sell their GPLed code to you for way above the cost of burning their CDs or whathaveyou.

"if you think coders' time is free, you're not much of a coder"

Danny wasn't alleging that the price of the code itself was fixed. He couldn't because the GPL explicitly says otherwise. You can charge money for writing GPLed code, and for copying or distributing the code.

The only thing you can't charge for is *permission* to use the code. How much money does it cost you to give one person permission to use the code? One measure would be the cost of typing 'cp /usr/share/common-licenses/GPL-2 .' just before you burn the iso or pack up the tarball divided by the number of people who then receive the code?

"This judge"

These two judges

"may have just vacated a couple of hundred trade laws..."

The judges didn't have to look at the trade laws because Danny was unable to write down exactly what damage it was that the GPL did to the software market, after about six or seven attempts in two courtrooms.

For such a small post you have managed to be completely wrong in quite a few different ways. I'm impressed. Is your name Danny Wallace by any chance?

Re:What? (-1, Troll)

blair1q (305137) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376593)

If Linux succeeds in displacing Windows, you will start to see non-free versions of it appear. Versions with enough modification that the "free" part is no longer the significant portion of its value. And the free versions will be obsoleted by their remnant bugs.

You wrote a very long post showing virtually nothing about whether I was right or wrong, because you don't understand economics at all.

Re:What? (1)

kasperd (592156) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376614)

If Linux succeeds in displacing Windows, you will start to see non-free versions of it appear. Versions with enough modification that the "free" part is no longer the significant portion of its value. And the free versions will be obsoleted by their remnant bugs.

GPL is not BSD.

Re:What? (0, Troll)

blair1q (305137) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376660)

GPL is not BSD.

When was the last time you read the GPL in every file you downloaded?

All it takes is a little linguistic shift.

Re:What? (1)

Aim Here (765712) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376763)

FSF owns copyright on the GPL for exactly that eventuality. If someone puts out a slightly-altered GPL that isn't the GPL to trap users, not only is it not enforceable if the victim inadvertantly 'breaches' it, but the FSF would, in all probability, sue and injunct the perpetrator the instant they noticed it.

Re:What? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15376625)

GP just handed you your ass on a plate with all the trimmings and you haven't yet retreated under your bridge? Let's see: How is the hypothesis you are making that all of a sudden open source will be abandoned for profit by the community, have anything to do with the GPL violating anti-trust laws?

Re:What? (-1, Troll)

blair1q (305137) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376645)

How does the hypothesis that anyone dumping will return to a profitable model once they've driven the competition out of business have anything to do with violation of anti-dumping laws?

Hint: don't let the word hypothesis make you think the paradigm of the argument has changed. Hypothesis, accusation, tort, complaint, suit, they're all the same thing.

Re:What? (1)

Aim Here (765712) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376705)

"How does the hypothesis that anyone dumping will return to a profitable model once they've driven the competition out of business have anything to do with violation of anti-dumping laws?"

Because law in the Wallace case relates to his allegation of predatory pricing as per section 2 of the Sherman Act. The latest bit of relevant case law on the subject is the fourth circuit appeals court judgement on "Brooke Group Ltd vs Brown & Williamson" which has this to say on the subject:

"A plaintiff must prove (1) that the prices complained of are below an appropriate measure of its rival's costs and (2) that the competitor had a reasonable prospect of recouping its investment in below cost prices. Without recoupment, even if predatory pricing causes the target painful losses, it produces lower aggregate prices in the market, and consumer welfare is enhanced. "

Now stop making an ass of yourself in public, please.

Re:What? (1)

Aim Here (765712) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376683)

I'm sorry. You didn't explain your idiotic argument in full detail, so I wasn't able to extrapolate this retarded theory of yours from your previous post. I'm not too good at reading the minds of people whose basic premises have some sort of passing acquiantance with reality, never mind fools who don't know the GPL from Theo De Raadt's asses' ass.

I'm not sure what you mean by 'free' here, but I'll tell you why you're an idiot either way.

If you mean 'free as in speech' free, then you're wrong. All works based on GPLed works must be distributed under the GPL. The only way that a non-free Linux kernel can appear is if either it's copyright runs out (which is effectively never under the current corrupt legal system) or a significant proportion of the kernel developers (which is apparently of the order of 5,000 these days) agrees to license the kernel on GPL-incompatible terms. Barring some sort of apocalypse, Linux can never be legally non-free.

If you mean 'free as in beer' then you're almost certainly wrong, in that anyone who pays for just one of these mostly 'non-free' Linux kernels has the right burn their own ISOs or put the GPLed work on their website for pretty much $0 per copy. The free market makes GPLed software more or less free, moneywise, although there are, of course, ways in which people can make money by charging for related services and products.

If you mean a Linux distro rather than a Linux kernel, then I'll remind you that distro's are never wholly under the GPL.

Are you finished yet? You're in danger of breaching your daily retardedness quota.

Re:What? (-1, Troll)

blair1q (305137) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376699)

I mean free as in not costing to purchase what it costs to produce.

Keep your juvenile taunts to yourself. They aren't making you look any better when you write two hundred words showing you don't get the point even when it's explained to you.

Re:What? (1)

Aim Here (765712) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376723)

And were you paying attention when I was telling you about how the various court circuits use Marginal Cost or similar measures (i.e. how much it costs you to give the product to the n+1'th person after giving it to n people) when deciding on issues of predatory pricing?

I got the point and answered it in my first post, but you were probably far too dumb to actually look up 'marginal cost' in the dictionary. There's really nothing I can do with someone as obtusely stupid as you other than throw well-warranted juvenile taunts in your direction.

Re:What? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15376728)

Keep your juvenile taunts to yourself.

This coming from the guy who called other responders idiots, lousy lays, and dolts? Real high ground there.

Who is Daniel Wallace? (4, Interesting)

beefstu01 (520880) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376412)

I'm just curious-- who is this Daniel Wallace character, and what does he have to do with the GPL? What prompted the suit? I read the Wikipedia page and there wasn't much on him other than his two suits were thrown out.

Re:Who is Daniel Wallace? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15376440)

Yea, good question, who is he? What is his motivation?

I'm gonna guess threre's something bigger going on here, he can't just be a lone nut, he must have a financial interest in all this.

From what i read though he should be punched repeatedly in the face. Juest for being that dumb.

Re:Who is Daniel Wallace? (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15376472)

Re:Who is Daniel Wallace? (2, Interesting)

mulhollandj (807571) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376478)

Perhaps he can't compete against the GPL. Maybe he is trying to run a business and trying to sell something that has already been done that is open source. This doesn't seem to justify huge court expenses though. Where is he getting he money from? Maybe he is working for somebody like Microsoft or SCO. It is interesting that Microsoft sells software and hence is against GPL and IBM sells services and is for GPL. It is all in the business model. Will Microsoft change to a services company?

Who Cares? (3, Insightful)

twitter (104583) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376641)

The wikipedia article [wikipedia.org] had everything I wanted. If you follow the references you find out that Wallace is someone a layman who challenged the GPL himself because he could not find a lawyer to represent him. [groklaw.net] Do you really care who he is, other than someone who decided to test the GPL and failed utterly?

What's important here is that the GPL was recognized as legal and beneficial. The judge ruled the GPL:

encourages, rather than discourages, free competition and the distribution of computer operating systems, the benefits of which directly pass to consumers. These benefits include lower prices, better access and more innovation.

Re:Who Cares? (1)

khallow (566160) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376685)

Do you really care who he is, other than someone who decided to test the GPL and failed utterly?

You already know the answer is going to be "yes". What's the point of asking?

SysCon sucks... (5, Informative)

Error27 (100234) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376435)

SysCon really sucks.

They said they wouldn't print any more Maurene O'Gara articles after she went crazy stalking Pamela Jones and making fun of her religion. So now they're printing MoG's articles but without any attribution.

As always with MoG, the article is misleading. The judge didn't accept the facts as true. To dismiss a lawsuit the judge has to say: "If these were all true, should the case go forward?" In this case the answer is no. The "if" is important.

Anyway here is the original article [slashdot.org] where the Daniel Wallace stupidness started. The actual syscon link is offline because syscon took all MoG's stuff offline.

Daniel Wallace is a net kook. I wouldn't be surprised if he created a slashdot login to respond anonymously to this article. He always posts about how the GPL is a contract not a license. He is not a legal genius but he is funny.

Maurene O'Gara is evil. She lies constantly. I've never seen anyone who is as sick and twisted as she is. I despise her.

Re:SysCon sucks... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15376569)

Daniel?

Is that you, Danny? Take your meds Dan, for God's sake take your meds.

Re:SysCon sucks... (4, Informative)

An Elephant (209405) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376640)

For those who scratch their heads in wonder, like I first did: Sys-con attributes the story to "Enterprise Open Source News Desk", but in the little letters in the end they give credit: "first appeared in Client Server News". That is www.clientservernews.com, which identifies itself as belonging to "G2 Computer Intelligence", with MoG as publisher.

Re:SysCon sucks... (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15376702)

Re:SysCon sucks... (1)

caudron (466327) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376681)

Maurene O'Gara is evil. She lies constantly. I've never seen anyone who is as sick and twisted as she is. I despise her.

I have nothing to add. I just laughed at this paragraph so much, I wanted to see it on the screen twice. Hatred this pure should be rewarded with repetition. :)

Tom Caudron
http://tom.digitalelite.com/ [digitalelite.com]

Man, what will my favourite usenet kook (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15376456)

Alexander Terekhov troll about now?

Re:Man, what will my favourite usenet kook (1)

schon (31600) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376669)

Oh, he's still at it. [yahoo.com] You wouldn't expect a real net.kook to accept reality so easily, would you?

Asshat sues RedHat, Judge laughs (3, Funny)

Half_Ninja_Half_Pira (974894) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376460)

News at 11.

Storie title? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15376463)

Wallace's Second Anti-GPL Suit Loses
Now, I'm not a native english speaker, and I can grasp its meaning, but surely this can't be even remotely close to proper english?

Re:Storie title? (1)

MisterSquid (231834) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376539)

Presuming we accept that "Wallace's Second Anti-GPL Suit" is an actor in this situation (the grammatical subject of the sentence), the sentence is grammatically correct. On the other hand, in English we usually speak of suits "being dismissed" or the plaintiff in the suit "losing." So, in this case the sentence is grammatically correct but the idiom is a bit off. Suits don't lose; plaintiffs (or defendants) lose.

Re:Storie title? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15376546)

It's fine. Wallace's (adjective) Second (adjective) Anti-GPL (adjective) [Law]Suit (subject) Loses (verb).

Guaranteed (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15376496)

All this despite Wallace guaranteeing a victory: "Front page, back page, middle page, they will not win lawsuit two".

From the fine summary... (2)

Zaatxe (939368) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376616)

Antitrust laws are for the protection of competition, not competitors. ... When the plaintiff is a poor champion of consumers, a court must be especially careful not to grant relief that may undercut the proper function of antitrust.

Man, this judge is my hero! Winners do, whiners sue!

For those interested in his "information" antics (2, Informative)

WillRobinson (159226) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376644)

You can visit the yahoo message boards and read up on most of it, plus some interesting comments on SCOX at http://finance.yahoo.com/q/mb?s=SCOX [yahoo.com]

It's ... the spelling police (0)

SpaghettiPattern (609814) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376721)

It's Daniel Wallace' not Daniel Wallace's.

Re:It's ... the spelling police (0, Offtopic)

rebill (87977) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376772)

Singular nouns get the "'s", even "princess" becomes "princess's".

is next (0, Offtopic)

sgt scrub (869860) | more than 8 years ago | (#15376789)

In other news: The Bush administrations looks into restructuring the Southern District of Indiana.
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