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Re: GNU licenses

From: Alexander Terekhov
Subject: Re: GNU licenses
Date: Fri, 08 Sep 2006 15:15:17 +0200

"Alfred M. Szmidt" wrote:
> Sighs, it has been said by four people by now, me included: you retain
> all the rights to your code!  Period, end of story, nothing more to
> discuss.  Be it original, or deriviate, it is your code, you are the
> copyright holder.  End of story.  

End of ams' bullshit. A non-original is a derivative (not "deriviate"). 
A derivative work must contain some protected elements from the original 
work (otherwise it won't be a derivative work) and those elements remain 
under old copyright of original author (new copyright in derivative work 
doesn't cover/replace it). An example is some C99 code translated (by 
human) to say Pascal83. As long as translation contains structure and 
organization elements (not dictated by external factors... see case law 
on the AFC test for the full list of unprotectable elements) from 
original C99 code, it is a derivative work. Combining two original works 
A and B never creates a derivative work. The resulting work C is a mere 

An independent selection of more than two computer program works for 
combination may qualify for copyright protection as a compilation (this 
legal term of art includes collective works), but resulting original 
compilation work C is NOT a derivative work: its copyright covers only 
selection of other works in a compilation, it belongs solely to the 
author of compilation work, and exclusive right to prepare compilations
is nonexistent. A reproduction of a compilation as a whole (including 
its constituent works) requires permission (to reproduce) from all 
copyright owners (exceptions to exclusive rights aside for a moment), 
just like reproduction of a derivative work, but this similarity 
doesn't transform compilations (together with unprotectable 
aggregations) to derivative works.


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