Let's all join Bill O'Reilly and hate France

If you can't look at DRM software, and you can't use software without DRM, then essentially you can't have open source in France. Not legally, anyway.

Bill O'Reilly
Open source advocates are ready to jump on the bandwagon of Fox commentator Bill O'Reilly (right) and start hating France.

The reason? As today's International Herald Tribune explains, it is because France is about to pass a sweeping new software law mandating the use of Digital Rights Management (DRM), based on EU recommendatoins.

Why is that so bad? It's bad because DRM, at its core, violates the basic open source principle. By definition, and by law, you can't look at, let alone edit, DRM software, even for legal purposes. (Not that this stops anyone.)

If you can't look at DRM software, and you can't use software without DRM, then essentially you can't have open source in France. Not legally, anyway.

The law has its first formal reading in two weeks, but meanwhile, open source advocates can all join the Bill O'Reilly Fan Club. He might now know what you're doing there or why, but I'm sure he'll appreciate your being there nonetheless. Even if it's not normally your baguette.

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