Microsoft isn’t banning open source from its Windows Phone Marketplace
A number of misleading stories have surfaced recently claiming that Microsoft has banned open source from its Windows Phone Marketplace.
This isn’t the case. Articles such as “Microsoft bans open source from the Marketplace” and “Microsoft banishes open source from the Marketplace” cropped up after a blog post Red Hat employee Jan Wildeboer. The post pointed towards Microsoft’s omission of GPLv3 licensed software in its Windows Phone Marketplace. This omission isn’t Microsoft’s choice however. The Next Web points to a great post from Slashdot that explains the problem:
"The article seems to ignore the rather obvious point that the GPLv3 and LGPLv3 themselves forbid using covered software in app stores that apply anti-circumvention measures, such as the Windows Phone app store or the Apple App Store. This is one of the improvements in the GPL between versions 2 and 3. The restriction is specific to GPLv3 licenses, and does not apply to GPLv2 licenses, nor to Apache, nor to BSD.
It’s always fun to paint Microsoft as the big villain, but what’s going on here is what the FSF intended when they added the anti-tivoization clause to the GPL. That is to say, it’s a good thing. If you want to run GPLv3 software in a Tivoized device, you have to jailbreak it first. You can’t sell GPLv3 software in an app store unless the app store meets the restrictions of the GPL, and Microsoft’s App Store does not.
Now, one could turn around and say that Microsoft is bad for having an App store that violates the GPL, but given how cooperative Microsoft has been with jailbreakers, I really don’t think one would have a rhetorical leg to stand on with this argument. It would work much better against Apple." (Source