[arch-dev-public] Moonlight in Arch Linux

Aaron Griffin aaronmgriffin at gmail.com
Tue Dec 22 13:45:21 EST 2009

On Tue, Dec 22, 2009 at 12:28 PM, Daniel Isenmann
<daniel.isenmann at gmx.de> wrote:
> On Tue, 22 Dec 2009 11:40:28 -0600
> Aaron Griffin <aaronmgriffin at gmail.com> wrote:
>> On Tue, Dec 22, 2009 at 11:28 AM, Pierre Schmitz
>> <pierre at archlinux.de> wrote:
>> > On Tue, 22 Dec 2009 11:12:30 -0600, Aaron Griffin
>> > <aaronmgriffin at gmail.com>
>> > wrote:
>> >>>> However, isn't there some legal issues with Moonlight? I saw
>> >>>> recently that Microsoft "pledged" not to sue Moonlight users....
>> >>>
>> >>> There are no issues as software patents do not exist for us. :P
>> >>
>> >> http://fedoraproject.org/wiki/ForbiddenItems#Moonlight
>> >
>> > Moonlight is licensed under the GPL. Who cares what patent problems
>> > it might have in the US?
>> >
>> > Of course this plugin is quite useless anyway (only works with
>> > firefox and those few sites using silverlight only seem to support
>> > the microsoft implementation). But I am fine with it if Daniel
>> > wants to maintain it.
>> Well, there are those of us here in the US and we do have US users and
>> mirrors. From a reading of the Groklaw piece[1], I see it as
>> "Microsoft can sue any users of the software that did not get
>> Moonlight direct from Novell". The "Downstream Recipients" part of the
>> covenant seems to NOT cover mirrors. This says to me that we'd be
>> opening up our mirrors to being sued for redistribution of patented
>> material.
>> As for the "Who care's what patent problems it might have in the US?"
>> part - I care. US users care. US mirrors care. We've already taken
>> steps to specifically appease the German audience (remember: we
>> removed Analytics because of some German law), why doesn't this door
>> swing both ways?
>> 1: http://www.groklaw.net/article.php?story=20080528133529454
> I have talked to the moonlight developers. The posted covenant on the
> Microsoft website is the old one. This has been updated some days ago
> and it's now safe for everyone to use/distribute moonlight without any
> fear to be sued by Microsoft.
> Miguel has blogged about it some days ago:
> http://tirania.org/blog/archive/2009/Dec-17.html
> "Microsoft has an updated patent covenant that will covers third party
> distributions."
> Another linked article from Miguel is here which clears the situation
> even more: http://www.linuxplanet.com/linuxplanet/reports/6932/1/
> (Novell Moonlight 2.0 Gets Microsoft's Blessing / Moonlight for all
> Linux Users):
>  ----snip----
> "They can take the source, do any patches they need to do to make sure
> it integrates with their system, and redistribute the binaries," De
> Icaza told InternetNews.com. "Anyone can take Moonlight and run it on
> any platform that they want and they can even modify it without Novell
> involvement and without the fear that Microsoft might not like that."
> While Moonlight itself is open source and now covered by the extended
> Microsoft patent covenant, the media codecs necessary for audio and
> video will continue to be treated differently. Moonlight includes the
> Microsoft Media Pack, which is a set of proprietary codecs that
> Microsoft has licensed from their own patent holders and makes
> available to Moonlight users, free of charge.
> ---snip----
> So we should be safe to distribute it and do what we want with the
> package.
> @Aaron: You were right with the old covenant, but with the new one we
> have nothing to worry about. I will wait with the packaging after they
> updated the website with the new one.

Well then, my only issue is assuaged. :)

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