[Linux-aus] Grant request: Contribution to Senate voting source code FOI request review.

James Polley jamezpolley at gmail.com
Mon Jun 23 20:25:42 EST 2014

On Mon, Jun 23, 2014 at 8:10 PM, Russell Coker <russell at coker.com.au> wrote:

> On Mon, 23 Jun 2014 18:06:50 Michael Cordover wrote:
> > Importantly, even if this material is released it still will not be "open
> > source" in the relevant sense. People will have a right to see it but not
> > to use it, create derivative versions etc. Copyright in the source code
> > will still be held by the government, presumably on an "all rights
> > reserved" basis.
> Getting the source published seems to be an important step towards getting
> it
> licensed for free use by the citizens.
> I recall Pia saying that CC license have some sort of default status for
> government data.  So it seems that for anything that is released we can
> make a
> good case for CC release.

I doubt that the CC license would apply in this case: this code is (if I've
understood correctly) one part of a commercial product developed
independently of the government.

To my mind, I agree somewhat with Bret, in that I think that it's unlikely
that this will result in code being made free-as-in-speech in any
meaningful sense. To my mind, the fact that this gives us better scrutiny
of how our elections are run is sufficient justification to support it; any
chance of re-using the code elsewhere would be a bonus.

> > I also hope it will put to rest those concerns that making source code
> > available can result in "security issues" for important systems. We know
> > this isn't true, but it was still raised in argument against release of
> the
> > code.
> The aim of the government organisations involved with the SE Linux project
> is
> to replace secret-source OSs with Linux distributions (primarily RHEL).  By
> starting the project the NSA clearly indicated their opinion regarding
> "security by obscurity".
> --
> My Main Blog         http://etbe.coker.com.au/
> My Documents Blog    http://doc.coker.com.au/
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