MythTV / licensing / GPL / Patents

Brian Gough bjg at
Mon May 17 07:29:15 UTC 2004

Pete Dijkman <pete_dijkman at> writes:

> MythTV is an example of a great free software
> project.  Non-royalty free patents and the GPL just seem
> uncompatible to me or am I missing something??

You're right, they are incompatible, but until the patent holder
brings a case the vendor is not necessarily violating the GPL in

Releasing any product carries a risk of patent infringement (we're all
probably infringing on some patent somewhere) so there is a judgement
call involved.

However, I wouldn't recommend using the MP3 codec in a commercial
product using free sofware --- since there are good free alternatives
available, such as Ogg Vorbis, it would be better to use those.

Brian Gough

Network Theory Ltd,
Publishing Free Software Manuals ---

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