[ros-dev] Reset, Reboot, Restart, legal issues and the long road to 0.3

Steven Edwards winehacker at gmail.com
Fri Jan 27 02:46:48 CET 2006


On 1/26/06, Robert Shearman <rob at codeweavers.com> wrote:
> I don't think this clause is strong enough. I think that any developer
> that saw the leaked source code should be banned from contributing to
> ReactOS. Since there is no record of which parts of the Windows source
> code that these people saw, if any part of ReactOS they contributed is
> coincidentally similar to the Windows source then it could be deemed a
> copyright violation.

But using that logic anyone that had ever seen AT&T Unix code would be
unable to write GNU and or Linux code. I don't buy that its a
copyright violation. Trade Secret maybe but copyright would be like
the header situation, as long as they are not directly coping how
could it be a derived work?

> If any legal advice the project receives says there is no problem in
> these four cases then this argument becomes less rigid. However, in the
> very least, I would still advocate adding a clause to say that, in the
> future, if anyone was found or admits to have Windows source code in
> their possession then they should be banned from committing.

I agree that anyone that currently HAS the source code for the leak
should be banned. Maybe I was not clear enough on that. My issue I
have a hard time telling some 15 year old kid who found the Windows
source code on a P2P network that he is screwed forever and cannot
write free software even if he deletes it. The legal council I spoke
with in effect suggested doing the rewrite and banning someone who had
seen the code but I do not agree with the idea that someone who makes
a mistake should be banned for life.

Steven Edwards - ReactOS and Wine developer

"There is one thing stronger than all the armies in the world, and
that is an idea whose time has come." - Victor Hugo

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