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Re: Sharing the GPL source code, with value addition by vendor specific

From: Hyman Rosen
Subject: Re: Sharing the GPL source code, with value addition by vendor specific to his hardware?
Date: Wed, 08 Dec 2010 16:03:40 -0000
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On 10/12/2010 10:59 AM, RJack wrote:
On 10/12/2010 10:20 AM, Hyman Rosen wrote:
The GPL is a straightforward copyright license. Each time a court
has had an opportunity to read it, they regarded it as such.

To which federal courts are you referring?

The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals:
    the GPL ... is a cooperative agreement that facilitates
    production of new derivative works

The Massachusetts District Court:
    With respect to the General Public License ("GPL"), MYSQL has not
    demonstrated a substantial likelihood of success on the merits or
    irreparable harm. Affidavits submitted by the parties' experts
    raise a factual dispute concerning whether the Gemini program is
    a derivative or an independent and separate work under GPL ¶ 2.
    After hearing, MySQL seems to have the better argument here, but
    the matter is one of fair dispute. Moreover, I am not persuaded
    based on this record that the release of the Gemini source code
    in July 2001 didn't cure the breach.

The N.D. Illinois District Court:
    The output of that program (the parser source code), however, is
    not subject to the restrictions of the GPL — it is the creation
    of plaintiff. FSF explicitly allowed for such commercial use of
    the output by adopting the following exception to the GPL:

    /* As a special exception, when this file is copied by Bison into
       a Bison output file, you may use that output file without
       restriction. This special exception was added by the Free
       Software Foundation in version 1.24 of Bison */

    There is no indication that Mackowiak, or any other Platinum or CA
    employee, used a version of Bison older than 1.24. Therefore, even
    though the output lines contain some of the utility source code, CA
    is free to use the output files without restriction, as allowed by
    the exception to the GPL.

The 11th Circuit Court of Appeals:
    That the Software had been distributed pursuant to a GNU General
    Public License does not defeat trademark ownership, nor does this
    in any way compel a finding that Darrah abandoned his rights in
    trademark. Appellants misconstrue the function of a GNU General
    Public License. Software distributed pursuant to such a license
    is not necessarily ceded to the public domain and the licensor
    purports to retain ownership rights, which may or may not include
    rights to a mark.

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