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Re: Use of GPL'd code with proprietary programs

From: Alexander Terekhov
Subject: Re: Use of GPL'd code with proprietary programs
Date: Fri, 09 Jul 2004 11:20:40 +0200

Rui Miguel Seabra wrote:
> On Thu, 2004-07-08 at 22:36 +0200, Alexander Terekhov wrote:
> > <quote>
> >
> > RMS: We have no say in what is considered a derivative work. That
> > is a matter of copyright law, decided by courts. When copyright
> > law holds that a certain thing is not a derivative of our work,
> > then our license for that work does not apply to it. Whatever our
> > licenses say, they are operative only for works that are
> > derivative of our code.
> >
> > A license can say that we will treat a certain kind of work as if
> > it were not derivative, even if the courts think it is. The Lesser
> > GPL does this in certain cases, in effect declining to use some
> > of the power that the courts would give us. But we cannot tell the
> > courts to treat a certain kind of work as if it were derivative,
> > if the courts think it is not.
> >
> > </quote>
> >
> > Now, do you seriously believe that they will be able to convince
> > a non-drunken district judge (appellate and supreme folk aside
> > for a moment) that "works that use the library" are in fact
> > derivative works under copyright law?
> It appears all cases involving the GPL so far have settled out of
> court... 

All that propagandistic brouhaha about "settlements" is the sign 
of weakness, not strength. Show me the papers and we can talk then. 
Given the FSF's reaction ("We will not betray our legally protected 
confidences, particularly when they relate to our work upholding 
the integrity of the GPL") to SCO's subpoena, I don't think that 
the real facts are in your favor.

>          except for that court order _in favour_, on one of the recent
> netfilter cases, I wonder why...

Research it, stupid. The court basically said "ok, taking for 
granted what you're saying, we'll issue prohibitive [unless...] 
order against Sitecom [that Sitecom can first object and then 
appeal] *limited in scope to your netfilter code*". If anything, 
it proves that the FSF's crappy theory has no legs to stand on 
in court of law.


<quote> That means that there will be a trial soon? 

Welte: Not for sure. At the moment, Sitecom still doesn't know 
whether they'll appeal that judgment. That will be decided by 
Sitecom after they have the judgement of the Munich district 
court in writing. Then it will be decided whether Sitecom will 
appeal. If at that time Sitecom doesn't want to appeal, we'll 
require that they provide us in writing a final declaration 
that they are acknowledging the temporary injunction as a 
binding decision. If they don't provide us such a declaration, 
then there will have to be a trial. But this actually would 
only prolong the matter needlessly. 



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