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Sender-ID and free software



(Michel, I am not a member of this list, so would you please
forward my message if it does not go through?)

Microsoft's Sender-ID license is directly incompatible with free
software regardless of which free software license is used.  Free
software means users are free to run it, study and modify the source,
and to redistribute it with or without changes.  Free to do so means
there is no requirement to ask or tell anyone that you are doing so.

The Microsoft license for Sender-ID directly forbids release of
software with all these freedoms, so it is impossible for any program
to be free software under Microsoft's regime.

I've been expecting to see something like this ever since Gates
started talking about spam.  This license is an example of Microsoft's
strategy for killing off free software as an alternative to Windows.
Microsoft first patents something, then incorporates it into a format
or protocol, then tries to make it de rigueur while excluding those it
wishes to exclude.  In the absence of resistance, Microsoft has a good
chance of imposing whatever standards it likes.  Let us, therefore,
resist it here and now.