A good reason not to buy a Hava

Hava is a line of place-shifting devices from Monsoon Multimedia, similar to a Slingbox. Well, apparently, they’re not being good net citizens. Monsoon admits that the Hava used code from the open-source BusyBox project, which is a toolset for embedded Linux platforms. The code is covered under the GPL, and one of the requirements of the GPL is that anyone using GPL’d code must release any changes to the code back to the community.

Well, Monsoon is not doing so, in violation of the license. This has caused the Software Freedom Law Center to file a copyright infringement lawsuit against Monsoon Multimedia on behalf of the creators of Busy Box, the first ever US GPL violation lawsuit. So this could be a major test case for the GPL in the courts.

As an example of a company that does it right, TiVo, which uses the Linux kernel (which is under GPL), makes all of their kernel source changes available as required.

I’ve always felt that the Slingbox is a better product that the Hava, with certain narrow exceptions (the Hava can work as a remote tuner for Windows-based DVR software), but to me this is the best reason not to buy a Hava – or any Monsoon Multimedia product for that matter. I believe in open source and it rubs me the wrong way for a company to violate the terms of a license for their own benefit to the detriment of the community at large. Until such time as Monsoon complies with the terms of the GPL, I will strongly recommend that no one buy their products, simple.

Picked up from Technocrat.

About MegaZone

MegaZone is the Editor of Gizmo Lovers and the chief contributor. He's been online since 1989 and active in several generations of 'social media' - mailing lists, USENet groups, web forums, and since 2003, blogging.    MegaZone has a presence on several social platforms: Google+ / Facebook / Twitter / LinkedIn / LiveJournal / Web.    You can also follow Gizmo Lovers on other sites: Blog / Google+ / Facebook / Twitter.
This entry was posted in General Tech, Sling Media. Bookmark the permalink.