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posted by janrinok on Thursday February 08 2018, @12:37AM   Printer-friendly
from the too-big-to-be-punished? dept.

From TorrentFreak:

VideoLAN, the team behind the VLC media player, recently revealed that they turned down several tens of millions of euros to bundle their software with advertising. The same cannot be said of third-party developers cloning VLC for profit, however. An ad-supported clone discovered on Google Play has a staggering five to ten million downloads and breaches VLC's GPL license, yet Google refuses to take it down.

[...] Aside from its incredible functionality, VLC (operated by the VideoLAN non-profit) has won the hearts of Internet users for other key reasons, not least its commitment to being free and open source software. While it's true to say that VLC doesn't cost a penny, the term 'free' actually relates to the General Public License (GPL) under which it's distributed.

[...] Since VLC is extremely popular and just about as 'free' as software can get, people get extremely defensive when they perceive that a third-party is benefiting from the software without adhering to the terms of the generous GPL license. That was the case beginning a few hours ago when veteran Reddit user MartinVanBallin pointed out a piece of software on the Google Play Store.

"They took VLC, put in ads, didn't attribute VLC or follow the open source license, and they're using Media Player Classics icon," MartinVanBallin wrote.

Update: The app is no longer on Google Play.

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  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by Thexalon on Thursday February 08 2018, @01:39AM (3 children)

    by Thexalon (636) on Thursday February 08 2018, @01:39AM (#634608)

    "Be evil"

    The inverse of "I told you so" is "Nobody could have predicted"
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  • (Score: 1, Funny) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 08 2018, @11:10AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 08 2018, @11:10AM (#634818)

    It probably was a misunderstanding. Someone asked: "What is your policy for promoting good behaviour?" To which Google answered: "Don't. Do evil."

  • (Score: 3, Funny) by DannyB on Thursday February 08 2018, @03:28PM

    by DannyB (5839) Subscriber Badge on Thursday February 08 2018, @03:28PM (#634953) Journal

    Bill Gates famously said "We've seen Google's Motto, and we disagree with that."

    I think he meant Google's Mission Statement, not Google's Motto.

    Motto: Don't be evil.

    Mission Statement: To organize all the world's information.

    I need to spend more effort optimizing performance within while(false) loops.
  • (Score: 2) by Freeman on Friday February 09 2018, @05:23PM

    by Freeman (732) on Friday February 09 2018, @05:23PM (#635587) Journal

    No, that's part of the Trade Secret memo. Can't have the general public thinking, they could possibly do something that might be construed as evil.

    "I said in my haste, All men are liars." Psalm 116:11