Re: XFree86 license difficulties
paul cannon <firstname.lastname@example.org> writes:
>> The opinion of the XFree86 project is irrelevant. It is the licenses
>> on GPLed works that would be violated, not the license on XFree86, so
>> it's the interpretation of the authors of the GPLed works that counts.
> I don't quite see how this is so. If the XFree86 Project were to say-
> theoretically- something like "linking dynamically to an XFree86 library
> does not constitute a derived work for the purposes of the XFree86
> license" then Qt (e.g.) could be dynamically linked to Xlib and be
> legally distributed under the terms of the GPL. The GPL is satisfied,
> since the linked product could be distributed under the exact terms of
> the GPL, and the XFree86 license is also satisfied, since they wouldn't
> claim any copyright over the linked product.
But the XF86 project would still claim copyright on some components of
that linked work, and its license is GPL-incompatible. So the
combination is not GPL-compatible. If you could find a way to
distribute the linkage alone -- the combination without the components
-- I suppose your argument would work, but I don't think that's
possible or useful.
> Is there a legal precedent or doctrine specifically stating that linking
> dynamically against a library produces a derived work? I have seen that
> the FSF claims this is so, and so it makes sense to apply their rule to
> products linked with GPL'd works, but it doesn't make sense to me that
> such thinking should be universally applied (the library is only being
> used or accessed, not necessarily being modified or distributed).
It is being distributed by Debian along with the work linking to it.
The FSF's argument may be weak elsewhere, but it's quite strong in the
case of an OS vendor distributing GPL'd works with shared libraries.
Brian Sniffen email@example.com