[OH Updates] Schematics and copyright
sunnyb7532 at gmail.com
Wed Sep 21 05:25:22 PDT 2011
On Tue, Sep 20, 2011 at 7:52 PM, David Carrier <dcarrier at parallax.com>wrote:
> I am concerned that current open source licenses allow a company to release
> a product's design files under an open source license, but retain the rights
> to the design itself. It is my opinion that it is unethical to do so,
> although it is legal. Oracle is doing exactly this with Java:
> — David Carrier
> Parallax Inc.
I attended the OH Summit and legal breakout. Patents may not be a good fit
with OSH, but they are not necessarily inconsistent or unethical to use with
it. That confuses procurement of the legal right with the decision of how
one licenses it.
Current open source *software* licenses allow a company to release *software
* files under an open source license, but retain the rights to the *software
* itself. It is not unethical to do so. The underlying copyrights are
desireable because they provide recourse for GPL violations. There is no
reason one cannot patent a design, offer an open hardware license, and
enforce the patent against only those who violate the open hardware
license. Whether the *economics *of doing so make sense is a different
The Oracle/Java is a factually complex scenario where some software
components are open source, some are proprietary, and some are open but
there is maybe a GPL violation.
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