> It appears that the lack of clarity is on your part.
Oh, I was pretty sure about the policy, to begin with.
But all of my colleagues were unclear. As were several of the people who
replied to my original mailing list post. And when I called Red Hat's tech
support and sales departments to ask about this, I heard from a couple of
different RH employees that the subscription policy is pretty big source of
confusion. One of the reps even told me that she didn't even understand the
subscription policy until a few weeks ago, despite the fact that she'd been
working for RH support for several years. (Apparantly, RH felt the need to
circulate a memo a few weeks ago, internally, to try to clear up their
policy stance on subscriptions.)
So, the list of confused an clarity-lacking people includes:
- Several UNIX/Linux engineers, each with more than a decade of Linux
- Several tech professionals who care enough about RH to subscribe to the
- A signficant portion of Red Hat users/admins working within support
- At least a few Red Hat employees.
All of these people must all be stupid, and perhaps illiterate, as well. Or
maybe they all received head injuries in car accidents, at some point. Red
Hat cannot possibly be contributing to their confusion, because no
reasonable, intelligent person could ever be confused by the appearance of
conflicts between the RH subscription agreement and the GPL.
It is a recognizable psychology phenomena that we label things as ambiguous
> (among other things) when we are involved.
Come again? What does this even mean?
If you want to use "Red Hat" without a subscription, remove the Red Hat
> packages that carry the Red Hat copyrighted materials and switch to CentOS
> or one of the several "compiled from Red Hat source code" distribution.
> You can also ask any Red Hat certified technician/engineer and they will
> tell you the Red Hat stance on the subject.
Yeah, and guess what happens when you ask a Mac owner whether Steve Jobs is
more handsome than Bill Gates?
Maybe RH believes it's being clear enough about its policy. But the number
of confused/incorrect people would suggest otherwise. I think that RH could
help by providing better, clearer explanations of some specific issues, like
how users' rights under the GPL interact with their obligations under the
subscription agreement. (That seems to be the source of most of the
disagreements I've heard, so far--maybe people are assuming that the GPL is
a trump card that invalidates any other restrictions.)