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Are retail digital downloads of LMMS ligitimate?

Talk about anything other than LMMS here.

Are retail digital downloads of LMMS ligitimate?

Postby administr8it » Wed Sep 26, 2012 4:50 pm

We came across a user on eBay today who is auctioning/selling *private download links* of LMMS for personal profiteering. Are for-profit-sales of free, GPU software a legitimate practice encouraged and endorsed by the creators of Linux Multimedia Studio?

Link to live eBay auction (active as of Sept, 26, 2012):http://bit.ly/LMMSforSaleOnEbay

After performing a quick search on Google, we tracked down the eBay seller's poorly crafted, for-profit download portal and discovered they are selling hidden-download links (emailed to users upon PayPal payment) of 'Linux Multimedia Studio' hosted off their private servers for $2.99 per copy, among several other freely available GPU software titles, which are also available from SourceForge.

For all intents and purposes, these people seem to want their customers to believe they are 'authorized LMMS resellers,' however poorly convey from their crudely slapped together WordPress site. They do however, provide their own internal tech support, which obviously deprives their paid-customer base of the thriving LMMS community that exists outside of a limited, broken-English trouble-ticket system. Scroll to the bottom of the payment page, you'll see the 'Purchase' button which links to PayPal.

Link to LMMS retail wordpress site: [url]http://bit.ly/PurchaseRetailCopyLMMS
[/url]
Something smells fishy about this, we could be wrong, but is LMMS supposed to be marketed as a privately-owned music software package, or how does one go about obtaining full-reseller-rebranding-rights of LMMS for monetary gain? If we're wrong about our suspicions, then please disregard this post, otherwise, something doesn't seem right about selling freely available software to the naive public, when said software is already freely available to said public.

If this is a common and acceptable practice for LMMS and other GPU projects, then by all means, where do we sign up, we could make a killing off this great music production suite... If not, then it is only our ethics and morals getting in the way, which makes the people WHO ARE selling LMMS as a retail, for-profit digital download, all the more deceptive, shady and unscrupulous. Do we really want these kinds of shady characters representing Linux Multimedia Studio as 'Exclusive Authorized Resellers,' duping the ignorant masses through deception and backroom social hacking?

$2.99 is no huge loss, but times that by 250+ and you'll see how much easy money these guys are raking in off Linux MultiMedia Studio "resellers."
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Re: Are retail digital downloads of LMMS ligitimate?

Postby administr8it » Wed Sep 26, 2012 5:42 pm

UPDATE: eBay seller seems to have been suspended from eBay, because all you get when clicking the link from above OP is,
"Sorry, Item # 270990427324 is no longer available." Somebody is working one step ahead of us! Maybe it's you guys?

Here's a screenshot of the original eBay link taken just before his account was apparently suspended: http://bit.ly/EbaySalesPageLMMS

But alas, the LMMS retail seller is operating under multiple aliases, and still selling LMMS via eBay accounts. Same seller, under a different Ebay ID, selling LMMS for-profit, however this auction is for a tangible ISO copy of the 'Full Retail, non-trial version' of LMMS rather than a paid digital-download: http://bit.ly/SameSellerDiffrentEbayID

Anyway, if this is a problem, here's the evidence, do with it what you will... And if it isn't a problem, and you're okay with people selling free software, then you are probably already aware of it, so we'll stop wasting time bringing this to light.
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Re: Are retail digital downloads of LMMS ligitimate?

Postby sti2nd » Sun Sep 30, 2012 2:37 pm

Probably not legal...?
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Re: Are retail digital downloads of LMMS ligitimate?

Postby owallgren » Sun Sep 30, 2012 5:56 pm

This is a pretty clear violation of the license.

Quotes from the bottom of the page of one of seller 'swampbuddies' auctions:
Note To eBay Staff
Information regarding VERO and this listing
This professionally made item conforms to all eBay and VeRO policies. All of these items are part of the GNU License. I am authorized to distribute this software under the GNU GPL License.

Almost correct. You really are allowed to redistribute this... but only if you provide a clear reference to the original project and also you need to provide the source. So it's a clear fail.

No copyrighted material is being offered for sale.

Wrong. This is copyrighted material.

A copy of the license for this product can be provided if needed.

I think this is a fail too. The license needs to be present here or at least there has to be a link to it.

This listing is for the CD version of the software and does not violate the Digitally Delivered Goods Policy as it does not offer a download option upon purchase of this item.

All links in this listing comply with the Links Policy as they only link to another eBay listing. No eBay policies have been violated in this listing. Please contact me before taking action.

If Ebay doesn't allow you to provide the option to download at least the source code of the application, then probably GPL and Ebay aren't compatible at all.

I've seen GPL violations like this on Ebay before and have reported it to both projects and FSF but as I don't have an Ebay account I can't report the violations directly to Ebay which is probably the only way to sort this out. In the end it mostly just makes Ebay look like a less serious place to go shopping.
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Re: Are retail digital downloads of LMMS ligitimate?

Postby brandystarbrite » Tue Oct 02, 2012 5:47 am

Yeah I agree. I've been seeing a good bit of them, on the internet, a couple months back. Some on ebay, trying to sell Blender, LMMS and other open source software. And people are actually falling for it. LOL! This is serious! :o

"Dangy PIRATES!" :x Justice will get you soon! You can count on it! :x
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Re: Are retail digital downloads of LMMS ligitimate?

Postby dotsnspots » Wed Oct 24, 2012 10:30 pm

They are up to no good again. I searched eBay for LMMS, and there are like six copies up for auction right now... :/
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Re: Are retail digital downloads of LMMS ligitimate?

Postby lmmaschine » Tue Feb 26, 2013 12:20 pm

LMMS is distributed under the GPL. That means that anyone is free to redistribute it, including for a fee, as long as the source code remains available.

It's kind of like a scam, because the customers buying these copies possibly aren't aware that it would also be available free of charge, and because the actual developers get none of the money. But still, the copies are "legitimate"...
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Re: Are retail digital downloads of LMMS ligitimate?

Postby brandystarbrite » Sun Apr 07, 2013 1:49 am

Dangy Bastards. Grrrrr!! :x
I hope someone deals with this as soon as possible.
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Re: Are retail digital downloads of LMMS ligitimate?

Postby brandystarbrite » Wed May 08, 2013 4:40 am

They're at it again dudes!
This one is named "Digital Audio Workstation."
The bidding ends 5 days and 15 hrs, from this post.
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Re: Are retail digital downloads of LMMS ligitimate?

Postby sketchman3 » Wed May 08, 2013 8:52 pm

lmmaschine wrote:LMMS is distributed under the GPL. That means that anyone is free to redistribute it, including for a fee, as long as the source code remains available.

It's kind of like a scam, because the customers buying these copies possibly aren't aware that it would also be available free of charge, and because the actual developers get none of the money. But still, the copies are "legitimate"...

I guess there isn't much we can do about it, then. I suppose one could post a question to them like "Isn't this available for free download on the internet?" to alert people, but... eh.
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