beware GNU Smalltalk if you want to contribute to squeak

Jason Johnson jason.johnson.081 at
Tue Jan 15 20:08:40 UTC 2008

On Jan 9, 2008 1:05 PM, Janko Mivšek <janko.mivsek at> wrote:
> I agree with Diego here and I'd like to ask Randal to stop spreading
> fear here and start treat licenses in spirit first, then by the letter.
> And in spirit I think GPL (and especially LGPL for Smalltalk case) is
> just fine. So, please, keep us out of those license wars. Those wars are
> not ours!
> Best regards
> Janko

I wish it were as Diego says.  I don't like all this license stuff.
But the fact it does matter and it doesn't matter what you or I
*think*.  It matters what the courts say.  And I think "keep us out of
those license wars" was exactly what Randal was trying to do.

In regards to treating licenses "in spirit" and the fact that GNU
Smalltalk people are nice and want to be helpful:

At a previous company I worked for there was a young man and a young
woman who fell in love and got engaged.  The young woman was quite....
hot blooded and sent the young man rather racy emails fairly often
using the company email system.  The young man liked the mails but he
didn't respond out of fear of the system sending an alert to his

Months later the young man found out the young woman cheated on him
and they ended their engagement.  At this point he dug up all those
emails and forwarded them to HR explaining that this young woman had
been sexually harassing him.  She was immediately fired and may have
even faced legal action.

The point of this story?  Just because something is ok today means it
will always be ok.  Things change.  Relationships change and even the
people involved may change.  It's my understanding that the FSF (i.e.
not the friendly folks from GNU Smalltalk) owns the copyrights.  Right
now Smalltalk isn't so much on radar but how would the FSF behave if
Smalltalk became the most popular language of all time?

Unfortunately, when it comes to these license things I think the only
thing you can depend on is what's written down because when the boss
man comes tapping on your shoulder no one is going to know or care how
you felt way back when.

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