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Re: [Fsfe-uk] Renting GPL software

From: Alex Hudson
Subject: Re: [Fsfe-uk] Renting GPL software
Date: Sat, 12 Jan 2008 21:06:42 +0000

On Sat, 2008-01-12 at 20:45 +0000, Jon Grant wrote:
> If i go into a web-cafe and go online and use Firefox on KDE desktop
> is anyone obliged to offer me the source code? I've only rented 15mins
> of online time afterall.

That's different, you're renting use of a computer (a service), which
isn't the same as software rental. Free software doesn't cover use of
the work usually, and that's all the user is doing - using it.

I suspect the act of renting GPL'd software is technically illegal
simply because the GPL doesn't allow it: lending and hiring are specific
rights in law, so if the GPL doesn't permit them then you don't have

Obviously, you can kind of emulate it by giving people copies of the
software which perhaps even could terminate, but there would be no way
to enforce that termination.



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