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Re: IBM doesn't like the GPL

From: Hyman Rosen
Subject: Re: IBM doesn't like the GPL
Date: Mon, 23 Mar 2009 13:03:35 -0400
User-agent: Thunderbird (Windows/20081209)

Alexander Terekhov wrote:
That is just incorrect paraphrase of the operative words
> preceding "that is to say".

In which case nothing at all grants permission to make small,
non-derivative work changes to the program and then distribute
the results, including incorporating the program into a combined
work. OK by me.

> Don't you know that ambiguities in licenses/contracts are
> interpreted strictly against the licensor/drafter?

By your reading, GPLv2 allows exact copies or derivative works.
The only ambiguity is to whether the extra permission to create
a non-derivative work based on the program is granted. Both the
licensor and the licensee want that permission to be granted, so
it doesn't matter how it's interpreted.

GPLv3 has cleaned up the language:
    To “modify” a work means to copy from or adapt all or part of
    the work in a fashion requiring copyright permission, other
    than the making of an exact copy. The resulting work is called
    a “modified version” of the earlier work or a work “based on”
    the earlier work.

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