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Subject: Re: Signing off.

Re: Signing off.

From: Greg Haerr <greg_at_censoft.com>
Date: 2006-03-10

> Imagine Rockbox was open for anonymous
contributions and some lawyer finds a piece of code which infringes the
copyright of some company. Who would have the problem then? Björn, Daniel
and
Linus, because they are responsible for the project and they host the
project on
their server. So you say that _you_ don't want to have your name in the
sources,
it's better if they take the responsibility for your code?

This isn't what happens. Björn, Daniel and Linus are
still responsible, period. When a lawyer doesn't like something
about an open source project, they deal with the maintainers,
regardless of "who" contributed the code. If they don't like
something and are powerful (read have a real legal budget), then
they'll demand the code be removed, regardless of whether
the maintainers have a real or fake name associated with it.
This is because the maintainers maintain the code; the original
contributor, fake or not, may be missing in action.

When microsoft came after me and demanded that the
Microwindows name be exterminated, they weren't
concerned with "who" wrote what, since they fully
realize they can't chase after contributions backed only
by a "name". Instead, they forced their will on the
maintainer (me), since I was available and actively
promoting the project.

Tracking names for legal reasons doesn't accomplish
anything, in my experience. When the offending code needs
removal, that's where CVS comes in: the contributed code
is backed out.

Regards,

Greg
Received on Fri Mar 10 03:10:23 2006


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