[linux-audio-user] Announcing Gnomoradio

Daniel James daniel at mondodesigno.com
Wed Oct 29 05:50:26 EST 2003

> But then it cannot be distributed commercially freely by anyone. It
> cannot be sold if you don't get a special permission to do so. So
> actually the license doesn't give the user the full rights.

What you seem to be saying is that user freedom is more important than 
artist freedom. Why should an artist be compelled to to grant rights 
to users? Free software, or culture, is a gift - it's not something 
that users can demand.

> I don't quite see, why the right to use something commercially must
> be considered something else than the right to run a program,
> listen to a CD or give away a book.

Because we live in a capitalist economy where artists still have to 
buy food even if they give their work away for free. I can really 
understand why an artist would not want some parasite making a good 
living from their work while the creator of that work starved. It's 
not like that's a new situation - ask a van Gogh dealer how much they 

> rejecting a licensee the right to commercial use simply is another
> kind of license than what a free license should allow.

That's a matter of opinion. The original Ghostscript licence is just 
one example of a licence that prevents third-party commercialisation. 
I think it's worth pointing out that when Richard Stallman wrote the 
GPL, he was working in an academic environment and he didn't have a 
family to support.

> I mean, programmers like Paul Davis put months and years of work
> into free software, too, without holding back the right to
> commercial use. 

Sure, and that's Paul's right to do so because he wrote the code - but 
Paul is also asking for financial support for Ardour from users and 
has proposed an added-value distribution which will be sold. It's up 
to Paul to work out a business model that suits him, but I doubt he 
would be happy if other people were selling an added value version 
and not putting at least some of the money back into development. 

> Why should artists get to keep more rights for themselves
> than the programmers?

In theory they should not, but in practice the treatment of artists 
has been much worse than that of programmers. A merely average 
programmer has been able to make a good living over the past 20 or so 
years, but that isn't true of artists.

Besides, if you really believe in artist freedom, then the artist 
should have the freedom not to grant any rights to users over their 
work. Of course, it would also be the case that the users should have 
the freedom to ignore the work of those artists.

With the advent of DRM, I'm having no difficulty ignoring music that I 
didn't want to listen to anyway. The day my radio can silence Madonna 
because I haven't paid her, I'll be a happy man... 


More information about the linux-audio-user mailing list