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Thread: How come MEPIS, PCLOS, can support mp3s? (Legal perspecitive)

  1. #1
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    How come MEPIS, PCLOS, can support mp3s? (Legal perspecitive)

    Let me state the question in full:
    How come MEPIS, PCLinuxOS, KNOPPIX, and other "free" distros can support MP3 playback out of the box, while Ubuntu, for legal reasons, can't?

    I'm just perplexed by it. It's more of a question about the legal issues concerned, rather than Ubuntu's commitment to free software.

    Is it because MEPIS et al are just playing hooky, trying to get away with what they can? Surely there must be a reason.

  2. #2
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    Hardy Heron (Ubuntu Development)

    Re: How come MEPIS, PCLOS, can support mp3s? (Legal perspecitive)

    Canonical won't pay for the license to include mp3 support because they support open software.

  3. #3
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    Re: How come MEPIS, PCLOS, can support mp3s? (Legal perspecitive)

    So would that mean that distros like MEPIS and KNOPPIX paid for the license? I guess I could understand that if we were talking about big distros like Red Hat and SUSE. But these ones are completely free distros. But I guess it's possible...

  4. #4
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    Ubuntu 6.06 Dapper

    Re: How come MEPIS, PCLOS, can support mp3s? (Legal perspecitive)

    Quote Originally Posted by GarethMB
    Canonical won't pay for the license to include mp3 support because they support open software.
    So are we to understand that MEPIS and PCLINUXOS don't support free software? Is Knoppix a hybrid FOS/proprietary software mutant anomaly?

  5. #5
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    Re: How come MEPIS, PCLOS, can support mp3s? (Legal perspecitive)

    No there is some confusion here because of your choice of distro's. Mepis duno about, pclinuxos have paid and knoppix is made outside the US so they dont have to pay, but technicaly that makes use of knoppix mp3's inside of america illegal

  6. #6
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    Kubuntu Intrepid Ibex (testing)

    Re: How come MEPIS, PCLOS, can support mp3s? (Legal perspecitive)

    If the dev people of that distro make it outside the US they don't have to follow US law's, Almost every other country has no problem with it. Those distro's leave US people decide if they install it illegal our not. They think those people can think for them self and know what is illegal our not in there country's.

    They don't nurse there userbase.
    http://forum.kde.org/ for all question about KDE

  7. #7
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    Re: How come MEPIS, PCLOS, can support mp3s? (Legal perspecitive)

    Mp3 support is free but not open source and ubuntu choose to not include any non open-source software by default (with some exeptions however) but Mp3 support and other codecs are easy to install and there are nice guides on the wiki for that.
    As for MEPIS and KNOPPIX they just make another choice, they prefer to provide a default install which allow the users to read most of popular audio/video formats.

    It's the explanation in my opinion.

  8. #8
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    Re: How come MEPIS, PCLOS, can support mp3s? (Legal perspecitive)

    Quote Originally Posted by frodon
    Mp3 support is free but not open source and ubuntu choose to not include any non open-source software by default (with some exeptions however) but Mp3 support and other codecs are easy to install and there are nice guides on the wiki for that.
    As for MEPIS and KNOPPIX they just make another choice, they prefer to provide a default install which allow the users to read most of popular audio/video formats.

    It's the explanation in my opinion.
    No, mp3 support is opensource, that is, you can get the source code of mad, lame, the gstreamer stuff from fluendo.
    The problem is entirely a legal one as there a patents on mp3 that also are actively enforced, though not against individuals using free mp3 decoders.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mp3#Lic..._patent_issues

  9. #9
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    Re: How come MEPIS, PCLOS, can support mp3s? (Legal perspecitive)

    helpme, i'm sure you understood what i mean, MP3 algorythm is proprietary (it's written in the link you gave).

  10. #10
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    Re: How come MEPIS, PCLOS, can support mp3s? (Legal perspecitive)

    Quote Originally Posted by frodon
    helpme, i'm sure you understood what i mean, MP3 algorythm is proprietary (it's written in the link you gave).
    It's patent encumbered, exactly, but the actual decoders are still open source.

    And no, I did not know what you meant. I simply did understand what you wrote differently from what you seem to have meant.

    P.S.: I don't know what the hell I did to you that you expect me to somehow intentionally misunderstand you just to disagree with you, however, I find the accusation childish and insulting.

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