Microsoft-Novell Deal

Open source software isn’t exactly the same as FREE software but from the perspective of most business users, they look darn close to the same. The new version of the GPL (see the previous article) seems to take a pretty hard swipe at anyone who wants to license patented technology and use it in their release of software.
One of the big users may be anyone that would have benefitted from the Microsoft-Novell deal.
It’s interesting that Microsoft has JUST published the claim that 200+ of its patents are infringed by open-source code. GPLv3 means–apparently–that Microsoft wouldn’t be able to press patent claims against anyone using software distributed under the Microsoft-Novell deal. And that–apparently–applies even if the person or company in question didn’t get the software through “approved” channels….like Novell or Microsoft.
I’m not a lawyer, but to me as a business person, this looks like it might be bad from a lot of perspectives. I think I understand why the Free Software Foundation (FSF) included these provisions in the GPLv3 license, but it seems there would be a way to allow the partnership between Microsoft and Novell.
All of this comes, I think, from the fact that a lot of the open-source community is somewhat “counter-cultural” at least from the perspective of the big company like Microsoft. You can see this–for example–in the Linux release of the browser FireFox. Evidently, there are some intellectual property rights surrounding part of the FireFox name or logo, so the Linux version is IceWeasel. Clever, I guess. But intended to poke a bit of fun at intellectual property rights which many open-source fans see as “foolish” or “exploitative.”
At this point, I think FSF is happy that this throws a monkey wrench into Microsoft and Novell’s plans…after all, they may represent the “evil empire.”
Microsoft Would Lose Patent Rights Under New Linux License Terms — Microsoft — InformationWeek