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RE: [TSVN] To GPL or not to GPL

From: Michael Tiller <mtiller_at_emmeskay.com>
Date: 2005-08-30 22:32:10 CEST

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Simon Large [mailto:simon@skirridsystems.co.uk]
> Sent: Thursday, August 25, 2005 4:51 AM
> To: dev@tortoisesvn.tigris.org
> Subject: Re: [TSVN] To GPL or not to GPL

> > As such, I would see a possibility to create a highly customized,
> > commercial variation of TSVN for the customer group I have in mind.
> >
> > But, because TSVN is GPL'd, I ruled such a project out immediately and
> I'm
> > currently taking a different approach.
>
> That's interesting, tell us more. Would that be for use only within your
> own company, or is this something you might consider selling?

Selling.

> Would it be a one-time fork from the TSVN code or would you be continually
> merging in all the bug fixes and changes?

We would certainly have folded back any bugs related to TSVN itself.
Anything built on top of TSVN (i.e. was within our customizations) wouldn't
have been.

> Had you considered submitting
> patches to the TSVN project, rather than forking your own variant?

Since we would like to make a commercial project, we would want to keep our
modifications proprietary. The modifications would not be bug fixes (I
don't really care about those), they be UI related mostly.

> What is the extent of the 'highly customized' changes you were
> thinking of?

Mainly policy related issues, removing advanced options and simplifying
dialogs. There are other things, but it is hard to explain them without
understanding the customers and their use cases (and I'm not prepared to get
into that right now).

> >>And if someone *does* commercialise it, or just integrate it into a
> >>larger package, GPL only requires copyright notices in the source code
> >>(and maybe the license file?). Most users never look at source code.
> >>Other licences can require you to display attribution more prominently.
> >>OK, we will never get a big banner, but we might at least appear in the
> >>doc and the about box.
> >
> > I don't understand this comment. Who cares about copyright notices,
> > the GPL would require me to provide the source code to my commercial
> > application. That is the issue.
>
> Look at it from the other side. The original developers care if someone
> takes their product, commercializes it and gives them no credit for it.

I don't think I expressed myself very well. If I used TortoiseSVN's code, I
would gladly give whatever attribution was required. What I'm saying is
that the GPL doesn't say what the original quote said. It doesn't ask that
the contributors be listed and their copyrights preserved, it demands that
all derived works be provided in source code for free and that is the
sticking point for me, not the attribution.

> Simon

--
Mike
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Received on Tue Aug 30 22:32:30 2005

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