1994-07-15 - RE: PGP bastardization

Header Data

From: nobody@shell.portal.com
To: cypherpunks@toad.com
Message Hash: b4650699938ac820ad9f722e88628a233eebb3f1c5d0bb56e3cf8a3152605436
Message ID: <199407150540.WAA12162@jobe.shell.portal.com>
Reply To: N/A
UTC Datetime: 1994-07-15 05:39:24 UTC
Raw Date: Thu, 14 Jul 94 22:39:24 PDT

Raw message

From: nobody@shell.portal.com
Date: Thu, 14 Jul 94 22:39:24 PDT
To: cypherpunks@toad.com
Subject: RE: PGP bastardization
Message-ID: <199407150540.WAA12162@jobe.shell.portal.com>
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain

> You may be correct in that Phil Zimmermann has no legal
> recourse, but I counldn't say for sure.  I am more concerned
> with the ethical issues.  What have you called your new
> super-duper pgp?  If you make it abundantly clear that it is
> *your* hack of pgp, and not supported in any way by RSA, MIT, or
> prz, I personally wouldn't have a problem with it.

Isn't it ironic, though, that Phil Zimmerman was the victim of a 
similar accusation by PKP/RSA -- "pirating" code?  IMHO, that's 
also who the person who released this new version really needs to 
worry about.  If they modified PGP 2.3a code, then they're in the 
same boat as PRZ if they distribute it.  The GPL only covers 
PRZ's (and Colin Plumb's) code, not the RSA routines.  Also, I 
wonder whether the RSAREF license on 2.6 is valid for modified 

Geeez!  If it's just the name, then call this newest version 
"TAP" for "Totally Awesome Privacy", or something similar.  Just 
so the "look and feel" are the same.  Nothing would stop the end 
user from renaming it from TAP.EXE to PGP.EXE, of course... <g>

I can sympathize with PRZ in wanting to protect his "baby" from 
the hackings of "unwashed Philistines" or whatever, but had he 
taken that attitude regarding the original RSA code, PGP might 
never have come about.