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Re: SFLC stipulated dismissal of Comtrend without any settlement

From: David Kastrup
Subject: Re: SFLC stipulated dismissal of Comtrend without any settlement
Date: Tue, 04 May 2010 16:14:19 -0000
User-agent: Gnus/5.13 (Gnus v5.13) Emacs/23.1.92 (gnu/linux)

Alexander Terekhov <> writes:

> David Kastrup wrote:
> [...]
>> The GPL legally establishes a heterogenuos pool of software.  
> Hey dak, how come that the FSF claimed in court that the GPL is NOT A
> POOLING LICENSE (and is merely "a vertical agreement between the
> licensee and the licensor of the underlying software" instead)?

Because that's the legally active part of the license.  That it has
social consequences as well is not legally relevant.

That's actually why the FSF has to get copyright assignments for
"strategically important" software: they can't just reimport GPLed
software (like parts of XEmacs) without weakening their legal position,
because if it turns out that they integrated (GPLed) components
copyrighted by the very party they are suing against, the cases get
precarious enough not to fit their rather small legal resources.

If the GPL were a "pooling license" in a proper legal sense, the
copyright assignments would not be necessary.

David Kastrup

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