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Re: Effect of transfer of copyright on free software licenses?

From: Hyman Rosen
Subject: Re: Effect of transfer of copyright on free software licenses?
Date: Wed, 22 Jul 2009 11:15:05 -0400
User-agent: Thunderbird (Windows/20090605)

Rjack wrote:
Just because you write something into a contract's terms doesn't
make it enforceable

It's not a contract, it's a license. If I want to write a license
for my work that says that I give a non-exclusive grant to persons
to whom I distribute, and to persons to whom they further distribute,
provided they meet my conditions, the exclusive rights to authorize
given to me by 17 USC 106 allow me to do this.

17 USC 301(a)

As usual, your irrational fixation on federal preemption of state
copyright laws makes no sense.

17 USC 205 concerns *existing* non-exclusive licenses and not
purported future *new* licenses "downstream". Only the owner of
copyright can grant a new license -- it's an *exclusive* right.

Yes. That's why we're discussing the transfer issue. It's possible
that a transfer of copyright to a GPL-hostile entity could cause
downstream distribution to be disallowed. That's a good argument
for assigning copyrights to an organization like the FSF.

The GPL is harmless (other than SFLC harassment) because it's legally

Once this is said by a court rather than by a fool on Usenet,
I'll get back to you.

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