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[Bug-gnulib] Re: licenses again

From: Simon Josefsson
Subject: [Bug-gnulib] Re: licenses again
Date: Tue, 28 Sep 2004 16:34:57 +0200
User-agent: Gnus/5.110003 (No Gnus v0.3) Emacs/21.3.50 (gnu/linux)

Bruno Haible <address@hidden> writes:

> Paul Eggert wrote:
>> Perhaps you could modify gnulib-tool to add an option to change the
>> GPL to LGPL ..., for the projects that need the LGPL'ed
>> version?  That way, the package could specify which license it needs,
>> with the default being the current behavior.
> I agree, this would be useful. And if the invocation specifies
> --license=lgpl but one of the modules or its dependencies is GPL,
> gnulib-tool should give an error.

Yes, this sounds good.

Then perhaps the same parameter can also convert GPL to LGPL in the
license template of files, when copying them?

Btw, I earlier asked RMS about having files that, in the license say
'This file is part of GNU LIBC' etc, in other projects (like GNU
SASL).  He suggested that whenever you copy one file from one project
to another, you should modify the license template to reflect this.
I.e., a file in GNU SASL should say 'This file is part of GNU SASL'
etc.  It should not say 'This file is part of GNU Libc'.  It might be
good behavior to also add a note saying 'This file is derived from GNU
Libc' or something.  Perhaps the gnulib-tool can do this as well.
Perhaps via: --project-name "GNU SASL"?

I'll look into implementing both ideas, if nobody has further

If so, one remaining worry is that gnulib contributors might assume
they submit patches under GPL, since the file says GPL.  What's a good
solution to that?  The patch attempt to fix this, but I think it is
rather hard to understand.  It would satisfy my needs, if the
intention is followed in practice.


--- README      06 Jun 2004 21:45:28 +0200      1.10
+++ README      28 Sep 2004 16:09:01 +0200      
@@ -38,6 +38,21 @@
 If your functions define completely new but rarely used functionality,
 you should probably consider packaging it as a separate library.
+GNULib contain code both under GPL and LGPL.  Because several packages
+that use GNULib are GPL, the files state they are licensed under GPL.
+However, to support LGPL projects as well, you may use some of the
+files under LGPL.  The "License:" information in the files under
+modules/ clarify the real license that apply to source.
+Keep in mind that if you submit patches to files in GNULib, you should
+license them under a compatible license.  Which means that sometimes
+the contribution will have to be LGPL, if the original file is
+available under LGPL via a "License: LGPL" information in the
+projects' modules/ file.
 How to add a new module

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