Canonical is certainly more letigous and careful, but nothing about their policies violates the GPL. It is certainly not a simple situation, but it’s not like the GPL is simple either. To have a real conversation about the GPL and Canonical’s policies requires a lawyer.
Ubuntu is mostly free (as in freedom) software and I haven’t heard of Canonical claiming otherwise.
Relevant comic: http://geekz.co.uk/lovesraymond/archive/taking-freedom-further
Ubuntu is a fully bundled experience with automatic driver setup etc… A distro like this is rarely fully Free Software.
Trisquel being the exception I guess.
This is a legal question about the “Intellectual property rights policy” Canonical has published.
End user experience and the availability of proprietary software for the distro has nothing to do with it.
I assume this question cannot be settled without getting lawyers involved.
There would be no problem if OVH wouldn’t put spying daemons in their auto-deployed Linux installations. Or didn’t fuck up package manager db’s so much you have to --force your way while installing stuff.