[linux-audio-user] Announcing Gnomoradio

Daniel James daniel at mondodesigno.com
Mon Nov 3 04:55:50 EST 2003

> Do you pay Linus Thorwalds for every one of
> your kernel?

Yes, indirectly. He is paid by OSDL to work on the kernel, so every 
time you buy a product from a member of the OSDL consortium you are 
doing exactly that.

> the GPL does not put any
> (monetary) restrictions on the distribution of the kernel.

Sure, but a kernel by itself isn't much use to most people, which is 
why only complete systems (or distributions as we've come to call 
them) are commercially viable.

> Yes, you may charge, but no, you're not obliged to.

That's the case with any transaction. In the context of musicians, I 
envisage that (since the majority never make a decent living from 
their music) most would use a libre music system if it meant that 
their music was heard and appreciated by more people. 

Removing money from the transaction would probably benefit most 
musicians - ok, they'd still have to fund production by themselves, 
but they wouldn't have to spend thousands of euros or dollars on 
promotion, for example sending CD's to record labels, radio stations 
and music journalists that would probably drop most of them straight 
in the rubbish bin. 

The way the music business is structured at the moment, promotion for 
an up-and-coming band probably costs far more then album production. 
As paradoxical as it may seem, you need to pay for a video to get on 
mainstream radio in the UK now, and there are also 'buy-ons', where 
bands pay for the privilege of touring with more established artists. 
Then there's the cost of arranging publicity, and playing for free 
when everyone else still has to be paid. 

But what about that minority of musicians who do have a commercial 
hit? We need to build safeguards into libre music licensing for them, 
just as RMS built safeguards into the GPL against the exploiters who 
were moving in on his world. Otherwise, we might as well put 
everything - software and music - into the public domain, and trust 
that unfettered human nature will produce the right result.  



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