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How will GPL "kill" the MS-Novell deal?

RegDeveloper has caught up with Eben Moglen to talk about the Novell's deal with Microsoft, FSF's response to it and GPLv3 as the basis of that response. Instead of litigation, which has been suggested by some on the basis of potential violation of the GPLv2, the tool which will be used against this largely negatively criticized deal is the new version of the GPL. Some believe this is just a "knee-jerk" reaction to the "threat of the day", but the clarification provided by Eben Moglen sheds a slightly different light on it. It appears that the GPLv3 is merely following its present agenda, which (with or without the MS-Novell deal) is incompatible with what MS and Novell tried to do with their patent covenant.

The new GPL will not necessarily kill the covenant itself, but merely legally extend it to apply not only to Novell users, but to everyone who gets their hands on software that Novell distributes. The only thing, then, which may lead to the break of the MS-Novell deal is Microsoft's unwillingness to let its patent promise cover all users of GPLv3 licensed Free Software distributed by Novell. They will want to pull back on their own.

Moglen said:

"If GPL 3 goes into effect with these terms in it, Novell will suddenly becomes a patent laundry; the minute Microsoft realizes the laundry is under construction it will withdraw."

Read the article.