BSD, Gav, LGPL, Jeremy, and business

Patrik Stridvall ps at
Sun Feb 17 17:07:15 CST 2002

> Patrik Stridvall wrote:
> > > But the point I'm trying to make is that I can be in violation of
> > > your RELICENSE.  I can make a claim that YOUR work is
> > > covered by the *GPL, so that your RElicense to me doesn't apply.
> > > If this holds, then my original statement that you gave up your
> > > copyright protection holds.
> > 
> > I'm not sure I follow you.
> > 
> > Yes, if my work is covered by *GPL, you can ALWAYS use it if you
> > follow the conditions in the license.
> yes, even if it contradicts your relicense.  If you "work on" 
> an *GPLed
> product, what you do is automatically claimed by *GPL, thus you can't
> make any license on your work that is *GPL free.

The *GPL only claim parts that are considered a derived work of the *GPL

So if I write a function A and use that to improve the implementation of
a *GPL:Ed function B, the *GPL claims my function A under the *GPL
because of the existance of code in B calling my function A and thus
the work I distribute as a whole includes my function A as a derived work.

However my function A in and of itself is not a derived work of the *GPL:ed
work so the *GPL only claims the function A as a part of what I did above.

This means that I can relicense the implementation of function A under
another license and the *GPL can't claim any indepedent modifications
to it since it is not by itself a derived work of the *GPL:ed work.

> > Of course, if you later decide that oh well following the *GPL
> > is not that bad in comparison after all, it is possible and
> > even probably that I can't sue you for breaking the relicense
> > as long as you follow the *GPL.
> and if your are relying on your copyright protection to allow you
> to benefit on the relicense, you don't have it in this case.
> Remember also that the *GPL is pretty much irrelevent so long 
> as you are
> not distributing to the public, so it's not a great cost to choose to
> go that route. 

If you are not distributing to the public you don't need a relicense,
the *GPL only forces you to release your work if you distribute to the
> > The point it that you must show that you follow either *GPL
> > or my relicense in order to not be a copyright infringer.
> > You don't have to follow both though.
> It's a little different, because I think the burden of proof is
> different.  Pending on the what you have in your relicense, it's
> easy to show that the receiver is covered because they have the
> software.  On a GPL violation, you have to show that what they are
> doing with the software is in violation of the license - which might
> be much harder to show.  

I think we are coming to much of topic by discussing the burden of proof.

The point is that if you distribute without the permission of the *GPL
or my relicense you are a copyright infringer. Whether in pratice I can
detect it or prove it, is irrellevant as far as choosing a license for
Wine is concerned.

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