Older blog entries for roozbeh (starting at number 1)

I have a situation here. Some (Iranian) people have copied my LGPL code without even attribution, and they deny it. The whole story is dirty, but is basically that they thought Open Source means public domain, and have even submitted my code to the Iranian government as a part of a contract, assigning "their" copyright to the governmental agency in the meantime! They have probably understood the issue since (I have explained it to them in person), but can't do anything about it, since them accepting that they copied my work would mean that they should either return the governmental money (which was at least about USD 17000), or replace my code (which they are incompetent to do).

I am following it up with the governmental agency (which is very probably unaware of the issue), of course, and am thinking about courts and all. (Any recommendation is welcome.)

The infringing code is even in the evolution-hackers archive. I posted a message there asking for the message to be removed from the archives: http://lists.ximian.com/archives/public/evolution-hackers/2005-March/005261.html

Is it impolite/bad/evil/something to ask for unlicensed copyrighted work to be removed from a mailing list's archives?

14 Mar 2005 (updated 15 Mar 2005 at 13:59 UTC) »

I'm trying to somehow make this my English blog, as opposed to my Persian blog UTF-8.

It was mainly this post by Daniel Veillard that made me try to think and write about the local perspective here. I first tried to disprove Daniel's point about geographical diversity, and tried to find the page about the countries that were represented in GVADEC in Kristiansand, but it proved Daniel's point. Yes, it's really an issue.

Guess what? KDE is more popular than GNOME here in Iran (same with the Arab countries). The reason: they are driven by customers rather than developers/designers/etc. When a user posts a bug report or a feature request that is written good enough and is easy enough, he gets it (specially if its low level, like i18n-related, usually it's someone from Trolltech that gives it to them). This results in much more fans, and since there is not much business around free software in Middle East and Africa yet which makes the fans the only people who write about free software, KDE, and other user-driven free software, gets mentioned more and more, which results in more users. The users rarely tend to become developers of course, because they get what they want usually, with enough nagging or noise.

And guess what, there are lots of frustration involved when nobody steps forward to give a patch for a bug. The user community simply rotates around itself: This bug shows it all. (It was finally Behdad, a GNOMIE, who came to their help.)

I just happen to be reading Alan Cooper's The Inmates Are Running the Asylum these days, and it gives me enough reason to make sure that we're on track. Yes, we are a smaller community both developer-wise and user-wise, we have less features, we don't have the resources to listen to end users much, but we will get more users in the end, who may start to turn to contributors. Alan Cooper tells me (and I have enough reason to believe it) that we are going to have a much much better desktop in the end.

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