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Re: [ROFL] GCC's GPLv3 "Updated License Exception"

From: Rjack
Subject: Re: [ROFL] GCC's GPLv3 "Updated License Exception"
Date: Thu, 05 Feb 2009 09:48:24 -0500
User-agent: Thunderbird (Windows/20081209)

Rjack wrote:
Alan Mackenzie wrote:
Hyman Rosen <> wrote:
Alan Mackenzie wrote:
Note that the copyright of executable files is invariably
held to be held by those who have copyright of the source
files, not those who wrote the compiler.

An interesting aside is that the source and executable forms
of a computer program do not have separate copyrights. They
are considered to be the same work for copyright purposes.

They are *not* considered to be the same work for copyright purposes. One form is considered to be a "translation" of the
other. That makes one a *derivative* work of the other under US

17 USC 101 Definitions.

A “derivative work” is a work based upon one or more preexisting works, such as a translation, musical arrangement, dramatization, fictionalization, motion picture version, sound recording, art reproduction, abridgment, condensation, or any other form in
which a work may be recast, transformed, or adapted. A work
consisting of editorial revisions, annotations, elaborations, or
other modifications, which, as a whole, represent an original
work of authorship, is a “derivative work”.

I have argued that a compiler adds no creative element to qualify
the "translation" because of its fixed algorithms but this is a
legally unsupported *conjecture*. The subject of derivative works
concerning computer source code has almost no modern case law to
assist in answering legal questions of this nature.

That sounds, .... er complicated!  You mean, if you validly
hold an executable copy of a (non-free) program, and you
"somehow" get hold of the source for it, then you're entitled
to keep that source code.

Are you sure, on this one?  I mean, this doesn't apply to book
 translation.  If a publisher is authorised to publish an
edition of a book written in English, that wouldn't give him
any rights to publish somebody else's German translation.

Sorry, I can't work this out!

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