1. 7

    I for one use permissive licenses in the hope that one day an aerospace company will use my code and it will end up in orbit.

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      Maybe they already do? With a permissive license you have good chances of never finding out.

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        And how would the GPL change that?

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          Because the aerospace company would have to publish their code.

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            s/publish/provide to customers/

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              No. It is not required to publish GPL code of the modified version if it remains private (= not distributed).

              So you have the same chances of never finding out about usage in either case (but the virality of GPL might actually decrease the odds).

              1. 1

                I was referring to this aspect of the license:

                But if you release the modified version to the public in some way, the GPL requires you to make the modified source code available to the program’s users, under the GPL.

                Whether or not that would come into play with the hypothetical aerospace company in question is beside the point.

              2. 0

                Or not.

                1. -1

                  Nope

              3. 1

                https://www.gnu.org/licenses/gpl-faq.en.html#GPLRequireSourcePostedPublic

                I guess what you mean is better chances of finding out?

              4. 7

                I found out that my open source code was being used in nuclear missiles. It did not make me feel good.

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                  What license were you using?

                  1. 2

                    GPL

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                      Interesting that you could have discovered this, would presume such things would be quite secretive. I guess there’s nothing you can do to stop them using it either?

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                        It was a shock. And nope, nothing could be done. In fact, I suspect that Stallman would say restricting someone from using software for nuclear weapons (or torture devices or landmines or surviellance systems) would be a violation of the all important issue of software freedom.

                          1. 1

                            It would be an interesting argument to try to make. The FSF already recognizes the AGPL – which explicitly does not grant Freedom Zero as defined by the FSF – as a Free Software license, and the general argument for that is one of taking a small bit of freedom to preserve a greater amount over time. A similar argument could be made about weapons (i.e., that disallowing use for weapons purposes preserves the greatest amount of long-term freedom).

                            1. 1

                              … Stallman would say … violation of the all important issue of software freedom

                              Restricting use on ethical basis is quite difficult to implement for practical reasons.

                              1. 1

                                That’s not really the issue. One of the things I dislike about FSF/Stallman is that they claim, on moral principal, that denying a software license to , let’s say, Infant Labor Camp and Organ Mart Inc. would be wrong. I think that “software freedom” is pretty low down on the list of moral imperatives.

                                1. 1

                                  Being able to (legally) restrict the use of my creative output (photographs in my case) is the reason I retain the “all rights reserved” setting on Flickr. I’d hate to see an image of mine promote some odious company or political party, which is what can happen were I to license it using Creative Commons.

                      2. 2

                        How did you find out?

                        1. 2

                          They asked me to advise them.

                        2. 2

                          For ethical reasons or for fear of some possible liabilities somewhere down the line?

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                            What a question. I didn’t want to be a mass murderer.

                      1. 2

                        try #![no_std]

                        1. 2

                          Of course, requiring an account to watch iPlayer and requiring a TV license number to make an account is not an option.

                          1. 1

                            The fibbonacci code on the landing page is super inefficient and it makes me sad.