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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: Mon, 12 Jul 2004 11:47:58 +0200

Rainer Weikusat wrote: ...

If you set the "followup-to", put the notice. Please.

< 2 x forward inline >

-------- Original Message --------

Rainer Weikusat wrote:
> Alexander Terekhov <> writes:
> > Rainer Weikusat wrote:
> > [... copyright misuse ...]
> >
> >> The GPL does not contain a grantback provision,
> >
> > Sure it does. It triggers when I want to distribute derivative works.
> It does not. The GPL forbids redistribution of GPL'ed works as part of
> non-GPL'ed works and nothing more. To quote:
>         These requirements apply to the modified work as a whole.  If
>         identifiable sections of that work are not derived from the
>         Program, and can be reasonably considered independent and
>         separate works in themselves, then this License, and its
>         terms, do not apply to those sections when you distribute them
>         as separate works.
> Voila -- no grantback.

Yeah. The part you quoted is the most funnier part of the GPL (given 
that I don't "modify" anything [as far as copyright law is concerned] 
when I "combine" works, etc.). The "grantback" is formulated in 2 (b) 
and the next statement. 

       But when you distribute the same sections as part of a whole 
       which is a work based on the Program, the distribution of the 
       whole must be on the terms of this License, whose permissions 
       for other licensees extend to the entire whole, and thus to 
       each and every part regardless of who wrote it.

I have no idea what the FSF means by "sections" but they state rather 
unambiguously that <quote> a "work based on the Program" means either 
the Program or any derivative work under copyright law </quote>" (see
Section 0).


-------- Original Message --------

David Kastrup wrote:
> Alexander Terekhov <> writes:
> > Rui Miguel Seabra wrote:
> > [...]
> > > Grant back is:  A releases
> > >                 B modifies
> > >                 Under certain conditions, B must grant back to A

> > >
> > > The GPL requires that you give exactly the same freedoms to anyone
> >
> > Yes. It requires to grant the rights. And "anyone" does include "A".
> No.  Not if you don't distribute to "A".  The GPL allows you to keep
> your derivatives to yourself, or to distribute them only to people who
> pay you a lot of money for them. 

But with a permission to copy and give the same rights to everyone 
(including "A"). Put the lenses on, dak.
>                                  You have to grant the rights to
> those that you distribute to.  But "A" has no right to demand to be
> among that set.

Yes, "A" must acquire a single copy (or that funny "written offer, 
valid for at least three years") to have all the rights. But the
copyright grant doesn't extend to "unrelated works or preexisting 
(and therefore necessarily nonderivative) works". And using the 
copyright license to extract such rights exceeds the scope of the 
copyright grant.


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