Blog: Compliance Industrial Pulpit


Although I find his analysis of P2P production incorrect, Dmitri Kleiner I believe is right to point out the important difference between the way big business has a split personailty/ double standard when it comes to copyleft software. One is to use it for their own purposes at will, but to absolutely deny it for consumers:

…publishing firms and entertainment industry giants will support the creation of copyleft software [for infrastructure] …they will not support the creation of copyleft [software for use by consumers (apps etc.)].

Kleiner, D., 2010. The telekommunist manifesto. Institute of Network Cultures Amsterdam.

The reason I think this distinction is important is because it explains a lot of the odd behavior we see in real life… i.e. Big Tech are big supporters of Linux Foundation/SPDX and so forth but ban strong copyleft licenses via OSI and code from their apps/apis and so forth from their repos?


One of the really resonant points I’ve heard from Bruce Perens and others is that LF in particular strongly encourages compliance, but also strongly discourages enforcement. I see that’s true, empirically. But I’m still not sure how it comes about.

Really? Even when you look at the incentives? If compliance is the Mise-en-scène, where the main protagonists like Disney, Netflix, Amazon join hands and smiling and waving in triumph in the finale, absorbed in its fiction - enforcement is like Breaking the Fourth Wall isn’t it? It reveals the naked hostility between all these actors?

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