The Free Software Foundation (FSF) released a draft version of its GNU General Public License (GPL) version 3.
The new version is written to clarify two very important issues lately, in the software industry, software patents and digital rights management (DRM).
This first major re-write of the GNU software license will change the terms and conditions under which major open source software operates, including Linux, MySQL and many others.
The license is currently presented as a draft and will require software distributors to protect software users against patent infringement issues, preventing GPL-licensed software from being used in DRM software.
"When you distribute a covered work you grant a patent licence to the recipient, and to anyone that receives any version of the work, permitting, for any and all versions of the covered work, all activities allowed or contemplated by this licence, such as installing, running and distributing versions of the work," according to the draft.
"This patent licence is non-exclusive, royalty-free and worldwide, and covers all patent claims you control or have the right to sub-licence, at the time you distribute the covered work or in the future, that would be infringed or violated by the covered work or any reasonably contemplated use of the covered work."
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