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Aug 09, 2007, 22:00 (1 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Jeremy Allison)

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"Late, and over a year in development, the GNU General Public License version three (GPLv3) is finally here. The GPL is important as it's the most widely used Free Software license, with around seventy percent of Free Software released under its terms. It is unofficially regarded as the constitution for the Free Software movement. Already criticisms are being aimed at the new work, mainly from people and companies who didn't take part in the drafting of it. The amazing thing is how many large corporations actually did take part in the drafting process for the GPLv3.

"Back in 1991 when Richard Stallman (the author of the GPL and creator of the Free Software Foundation) released the second version of the GPL, no one much cared. Only a few 'Free Software' enthusiasts like myself paid attention and bothered to read and understand it. Sixteen years later the release of version three has drawn comments directly from Microsoft and IBM lawyers enthusiastically participated in the drafting of it. How times have changed..."

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