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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 23:50:01 +0000

On Sat, 2008-01-12 at 23:45 +0000, Noah Slater wrote:
> On Sat, Jan 12, 2008 at 09:12:10PM +0000, Alex Hudson wrote:
> > I should add I think that's the case with v2, but not v3 - the wording
> > of the latter is much more broad, and allows lending/hiring, but only on
> > the same terms as copying.
> I think it comes down to what you class as "distribution" of the works.
> Clearly, in an internet cafe the proprietors are no distributing software.

Well, as you say, it does come down to interpretation.

The reason I would say v2 probably doesn't permit it is that under UK
law at least, "distribution" has a specific meaning separate from
"lending", "hiring", "sale" and "loan", which are the types of act which
copyright forbids with respect to issuing copies to the public.

This is one reason I think the GPLv3 is quite good in this respect: the
term "propagation" is defined in terms of the acts restricted by
copyright, rather than relying on some common definition, and feels a
lot more trustworthy in that respect.



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