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Re: License of m4/ltoptions.m4

From: Gary V. Vaughan
Subject: Re: License of m4/ltoptions.m4
Date: Thu, 11 Nov 2004 08:25:30 +0000
User-agent: Mozilla Thunderbird 0.9 (Macintosh/20041103)

Now for the note to the FSF that explains why we need it... here
is a first cut to get the ball rolling:

Autoconf, Automake and Libtool have long distributed m4 macro
files that are needed to generate the familiar configure script.
In the spirit of giving our users all the same rights that we
developers have, our intention has always been to allow our
users to distribute these m4 macros with their packages so that
*their* users can regenerate the configure script if, say, they
want to make a patch to get things to work on a platform that
the package maintainer didn't have access to.

For this purpose, all 3 autotools have historically had an
exception to the GPL in those source files containing m4 macros
used to generate a package configuration script, but unfortunately
we have used different wordings and in a few cases forgotten to
add the exception clause to a macro source file.

We would jointly like to standardise on the wording of the
exception clause, and add it into the few files that are
currently missing it.

As the copyright holder of these tools, our questions to you are:

  i) Is it okay for us to change the wording of the licenses in
     our m4 macro source files, and in some cases add in the
     missing exception clause, to clarify the spirit in which
     they have been distributed all along?
 ii) Is the following wording sufficiently clear from a legal
     point of view?

Alexandre Duret-Lutz wrote:
"Paul" == Paul Eggert <address@hidden> writes:

 Paul> As a special exception to the GNU General Public License,
 Paul> if you distribute this file as part of a package that
 Paul> automatically derives from this file a configuration
 Paul> script (and perhaps some associated intermediate files),
 Paul> then you may distribute this file and the derived files
 Paul> for that purpose, under the same terms that you use for
 Paul> the rest of the package.

President Eggert, you have my vote!

Seconded :-)

Gary V. Vaughan      ())_.  address@hidden,}
Research Scientist   ( '/
GNU Hacker           / )=
Technical Author   `(_~)_

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