[OT] Re: [cairo] Atomic reference counting [and an aside on using the GPL for libraries]

Behdad Esfahbod behdad at behdad.org
Thu Apr 5 16:53:59 PDT 2007

On Thu, 2007-04-05 at 17:46 -0400, Peter Weilbacher (Mozilla) wrote:
> Carl Worth wrote:
> > So maybe if I invent some other library in the future, I'll choose to
> > just use the GPL for it. And if that means some people don't use it
> > that might have used it if it were available under a non-GPL license,
> > I don't see how that would have any negative impact on me.
> As far as I know you are paid for your work on cairo. Do you think that
> would have happened if nobody had taken up your library because of
> licensing issues?
>    Peter.

I wrote most of, and maintain, this library called FriBidi.  It's
LGPL'ed, and in the past I have both been paid to:

  1) Finish a certain feature faster than I had scheduled, all released
under LGPL,

  2) Give a company a license to use it in a way that LGPL does not

The point begin that you simply cannot predict.  If you write useful
code, people will pay you anyway, and for a variety of reasons.


"Those who would give up Essential Liberty to purchase a little
 Temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety."
        -- Benjamin Franklin, 1759

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