Steem's license

20 days ago
60 in steem


Source: https://24by7masti.files.wordpress.com

Steem's license currently includes the following paragraph:

"Redistribution and use in source and binary forms, with or without modification, are permitted provided that the following conditions are met: [...]
The software is not used with any forks of the Steem blockchain that are not recognized by Steemit, Inc in writing."

Several people wondered about this sentence before and some even demanded a license change. However, nothing seems to have happened concerning this issue. As we have a new marketing team these days, I would like to publicly ask the following question:

Why doesn't Steem just simply use a license compatible with existing free software licenses?

Thank you very much for any official answers. I would love to see a license change happening as Steem deserves to be as free as possible but maybe somebody can help me to understand the reasoning behind the current license.

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60
  ·  20 days ago

This has indeed troubled me for a while. I will join you asking this same question.

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60
  ·  20 days ago

Thank you for your support and for resteeming this article. I really hope we'll get an official answer.

55
  ·  20 days ago

Hi
Post super
I signed up and voted.
Let's be friends? With love @andrianna

64
  ·  19 days ago

Ned had to change the licence after Dan wanted to leave with the Steem in his luggage. I agreed with this step.

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60
  ·  19 days ago

Hum... do you have any sources for that? How can one "leave with anything in his luggage" if the license is a free software license? Those licenses don't allow for stealing anything.

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64
  ·  19 days ago

It has been a copy about patents and how they prevent development and progress. Don't you remember?
When it's free you are able to put it into the luggage. But Dan had to leave it into the Inc. Would you better see it occur at facebook or any other competitor? The licence change was well done by Ned.

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60
  ·  19 days ago

Somehow I seem to have missed something here... I only remember that Dan left Steemit because he apparently wanted to change the licence. I'm not so sure about whether he wanted to "steal" it.

Additionally, I also fail to see how a free licence could end up benefiting competitors such as Facebook. For example, if the Steem developers would choose the GPL, nobody could steal the code as all code derived from it would have to be free again.

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64
  ·  19 days ago

I never wrote about „stealing“.
Why any competitor should care if GPL code is free forever? He saves cost because of lower development by taking free software.

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60
  ·  19 days ago

I think @gamer00's answer pretty accurately addresses your reply. The GPL is a very good example how a free software licence protects your code as all code derived from GPL'ed code has to be GPL'ed again.

//edit: Btw: There are projects like http://gpl-violations.org/ for example which try to make sure that people don't get away with simply ignoring the GPL if this is one of your concerns.

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60
  ·  19 days ago

It has been a copy about patents and how they prevent development and progress.

No idea what that is about to mean. Software patents practically always hurt development.

When it's free you are able to put it into the luggage.

When what is free? The software license? What does that have to do with anything being put into anyones luggage? The way I see this Steemit Inc is being overzealous with their imaginary property and they overprotect their imaginary property rights.

How exactly would Dan have taken Steem with his luggage if the license was a Free Software License like GPL?

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64
  ·  19 days ago

I don't know why this few words are coming up to become a political affair. One guy wanted to take it out to his next job and the other stopped him. I'm thankful that he was stopped and you not. It's all okay now. Different opinions, nobody told about stealing at all and my minnow–view in this whales case is of a very minor public concern anyway.

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60
  ·  19 days ago

Nobody is turning anything into a "political affair". I'm simply trying to understand your point. So far I have to admit that I failed to get it. You seem to be worried that Dan tried to "steal" Steem's code as this is my translation of "putting something into his luggage". If that's a wrong interpretation, please let me know.

Furthermore, this isn't an issue between minnows and whales. It is an issue lying at the heart of Steem and Steemit as it concerns the main licence. If this licence isn't free, the whole project cannot be deemed to be a FLOSS project which isn't just simply a minor marketing flaw. It has (in my opinion) serious implications on the future of this project.

I'm once again really surprised that:

  1. So few people seem to care about this issue
  2. So far there hasn't been any explanation by the Steem team about the choice of this licence. At least none I'm aware of... If anybody knows about any official statement, please let us know!
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64
  ·  19 days ago

Maybe „put into luggage“ is a synonym for stealing. In this case my expression was totally wrong. „Funny English“ is my second name. I never meant stolen at all!

GPL is okay. I have no problem with. One of my concerns is that this graphene development is pretty new and still in Beta. The concerns of the Inc. are replicable because the Steem struggles in trial and error, while a competitor is able to finish this development without all these risc and leave Steemit Inc. behind very easy, by starting at a more pleasant point. The HF 17+18 has been no joke.

It is not a question of believe in GPL. It's a question oft serious fights on the market of social networks and who has paid the development for this up to date solution. And by the way, I am convinced when Steemit is running properly and the Beta is a V1.0, it will be GPL again. Ned just protected the baby of the Inc. for a while. I understand what he did. May be it has been overzealous but now it is not any more just an imaginary property. The Inc. is in advantage now and still has time to perfect the solution without the turn up of competitors on the same blockchain solution.

Remember, an Irish bank have got the licence to issue coins and facebook is in negotiations with this bank. I don't tell you Dan is going to facebook. I just tell you that Ned has to take a lot of care, he is young, an idealist but far away from stupid and I understand this step he made.

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60
  ·  19 days ago

No, I'm not concerned about "next jobs", Ned and Dan could have signed an NDA and that'd covered that. What I am concerned about is the source is not Free Software, and I doubt it would pass as Open Source either. I came to Steem under the impression that it was in fact Free Software, and later learned to find it wasn't.

What concerns me most, because not being Free Software, if Steemit Inc decides to put the project down or sells it to someone, no-one can fork and continue it, and it will be doomed.

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64
  ·  19 days ago

Yes, this argument is a really serious one. These concerns can come true. Nobody can deny and nobody can prevent. Well spoken. They could have signed a NDA, but if not? As I said, in my opinion Ned is an idealist and beside all his hard business skills he is believing in the community, he created.

He let Golos fork and it shows, he is not frighten by forks at all. He was frightened by the sudden surprise of a leaving friend after one year only. So spend a little credit in his positive intents, wait and see. I don't think he has urgly plans in the back. He just tried to protect his baby in the best way.

Maybe I'm wrong. But I'm always thinking in the best manner of the others. Of course, I was once broken by this childish believes, but this is the way I am. Even the worse of us has some good kernels hidden. But Ned has always been the good guy. Why he should turn around now to show the opposite? Never ever. You should ask him. It is clearly an issue of public interests.

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60
  ·  18 days ago

@afrog Glad to see that you are convinced that version 1.0 of Steem will be released under GPL terms. I'm not. ;-)

If the Steem developers plan to free the code one day in the future, why couldn't they just do it now? I love your optimism and positive attitude but I would love it even more to read an official statement from the developers or the marketing team about their future plans.

63
  ·  19 days ago

isn't this Golos thing a violation then?

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60
  ·  19 days ago

Well, that seems to be the case indeed. However, it might have been that Steemit Inc. gave them their permission to fork the code.

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61
  ·  16 days ago

No they got permission from steemit inc

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65
  ·  16 days ago

You also have a account on golos, with some Golos inside

https://golos.io/@herzmeister/transfers

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63
  ·  15 days ago

wow all the things i have when the day is long

i dont speak much russian tho :D

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65
  ·  15 days ago

Hehe, they took a snapshot of all steem-accounts and every account got some Golos.

68
  ·  18 days ago

Easy, to make even more money.

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60
  ·  18 days ago

Well, apparently not. I fail to see how Steem Inc. would profit financially from not freeing the code. Could you enlighten me?

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68
  ·  18 days ago

If you want to use their code, you pay.

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60
  ·  18 days ago

Well, that would really hurt their reputation a lot if Steem Inc. would start to blackmail people who would like to fork their code.

It would be so easy to silence those bad thoughts but so far there doesn't seem to be any official stance. Anywhere.

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68
  ·  18 days ago

This was the reason why @dan left. Maybe you should read the news.
https://steemit.com/steem/@dan/today-i-submitted-my-resignation-to-steemit-inc
Start from here.

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60
  ·  18 days ago

Where do you read that Steem Inc. wanted to blackmail people or sell their code in those two sentences "I will not be posting or voting any more. I wish you all the best."?

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68
  ·  18 days ago

Did I say Steemit is blackmailing anyone? Just do some research. Read the comments below. Do you even Steem, bro?

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60
  ·  18 days ago

As a matter of fact, I do. :-)

However, all I can read in the comments are wild accusations, rumours and "alternative facts". Nothing official, nothing concrete. Only lots of FUD...

I'm looking for some kind of official statement regarding the licence. Apparently, it's either too well hidden or I'm too dumb to steem.

65
  ·  16 days ago

Why doesn't Steem just simply use a license compatible with existing free software licenses?

I think: Because somebody could simply clone Steemit without ninja mining and without giving the devs a stake.
Some users here would jump on such a platform.

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60
  ·  15 days ago

Nobody would use an alternative platform if it isn't better than Steemit itself. And if an alternative is better than Steemit itself, it deserves to be used. This is how free software works. I don't see a problem with that.

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65
  ·  15 days ago

I just gave you a good reason, why a clone would be better for many people.

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60
  ·  15 days ago

But how is this situation different from thousands of other free software projects? Anyone can simply create a Bitcoin clone but that never seemed to be a problem at all for the Bitcoin developers. I don't see why Steemit Inc. should follow a different path here.

62
  ·  15 days ago

Very nice ~.~ thank you for sharing

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60
  ·  15 days ago

You are welcome. Unfortunately, I didn't get any official reply yet. Did any of you guys succeed in finding official information (i.e. information not posted in form of comments or replies but rather the official Steemit Inc. stance on this issue)?