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Re: Circumventing the GPL

From: David Kastrup
Subject: Re: Circumventing the GPL
Date: Fri, 25 Jul 2008 17:56:28 +0200
User-agent: Gnus/5.13 (Gnus v5.13) Emacs/23.0.60 (gnu/linux)

Alexander Terekhov <> writes:

> David Kastrup wrote:
>> Alexander Terekhov <> writes:
>> > John Hasler wrote:
>> >>
>> >> Tim Smith wrote:
>> >> > The copies were pretty clearly made lawfully under GPL.  I am
>> >> > clearly the owner of the copies.  So, why can't I take advantage
>> >> > of first sale and sell them, without the need of copyright
>> >> > permission?
>> >>
>> >> Because you agreed not to sell them without source when you
>> >> accepted the GPL which you did when you made the copies.
>> >
>> > Ahhh. But don't you know that the GPL is not a contract (agreement)
>> > in the GNU Republic, uncle Hasler? :-)
>> You can claim either agreement or non-agreement with the conditions.
>> Your choice.  In the latter case, you had no permission to copy in
>> the first place.
> You confuse conditions precedent with covenants. In the former case,
> failure to fullfill condition precedent means that I had no permission
> to copy in the first place.  But restrictions on distribution of a
> copy that I make (under authorization) just can't be conditions
> precedent because a copy must be made first.  Got it now?

Agreement is precedent to making copies.  You can't drop it later.  It
is similar to buying things by bank draft.  If I later decide that I
don't relish paying, I can't just dissolve the bank account and let my
vendor sort out the mess by himself.  Even if I claim that at the time
of purchase I was perfectly intending to hold up my part of the deal.

David Kastrup, Kriemhildstr. 15, 44793 Bochum

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