Ruben Leote Mendes ruben at nocturno.org
Thu Aug 30 21:28:41 UTC 2001


Some days ago Loïc Dachary published an article[1], titled "Free Software 
Experts", requesting that free software developers apply for External Experts
of the European Commission. This article was published on several news sites
including gildot.org which is a kind of slashdot.org in portuguese. 
There was a comment[2] (in portuguese) from someone who was an Expert last
year that mentioned that all Experts must sign Non-Disclosure-Agreements.

What follows is a message I sent to Loïc about this. In this message I give
an example with Werner Koch/GnuPG because that was what GnuPKI inspired me.
I hope Werner doesn't mind. :) Loïc thinks we should discuss this so I
am bringing it to the mailing list.

[1] http://www.fsfeurope.org/news/article2001-08-23-01.en.html
[2] http://www.gildot.org/articles/01/08/26/1212223.shtml

> Hello Loïc,
> The article published in gildot.org had only one comment so far.
> But it was an interesting article from someone who have been an Expert before.
> He mentioned that all experts must sign Non Disclose Agreements (NDA).
> Consider the following scenario:
> Werner Koch applies to became an expert and he is approved. He signs the NDA.
> He is assigned the task of evaluating GnuPKI proposal, which he does.
> Some time later he adds some feature to GPG that is very remotely related
> to some work described on GnuPKI papers. GnuPKI says Werner is violating
> their intelectual property and sues him for violation of contract.
> This is just an hypothetical scenario but I think it illustrates them problem.
> NDA's are never good. I won't sign one myself and I don't think any free
> software developers should sign them.
> What do you think?

Rúben Leote Mendes - ruben at nocturno.org
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