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From "Geir Magnusson Jr." <g...@pobox.com>
Subject Re: TSFKAJ
Date Sat, 14 Jul 2007 23:30:56 GMT

On Jul 14, 2007, at 2:58 PM, Andrew C. Oliver wrote:

>>>  accepting
>>> NDAs was something most GNU hackers would never agree to)
>> Serious question - does the FSF have any private lists?
> There is a massive leap from having a private list to accepting an  
> NDA.  Private lists sometimes keep out unwanted slashdot (the  
> casually interested troll is never a contributive presence) from  
> otherwise healthy communities and sometime deal with sensitive  
> legal matters as they come up.  Though they are overused at the  
> ASF.  NDAs split the community and make free software developers  
> unfree to share with their neighbor and that's not good ;-).

If the neighbor doesn't agree to not disclose the contents of the  
private list, isn't that as divisive?

The point I'm trying to make is that the basic notions of an NDA - to  
agree not to disclose information given to you in a specific context  
except to those who have agreed to the same conditions - are the same  
basic notions of a private list, which we accept.

This isn't an attempt to defend NDAs (I do think they have their  
place), but simply explore our sometimes violent reactions to NDAs.   
Is it because it's a "legal" document that we sign, and the other is  
generally a vague promise at best?  (but ethically as binding as if  
you signed a piece of paper, IMO...)


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