Re: RPSL and DFSG-compliance
Matthew Palmer writes:
>> You are not required to accept this License. However, nothing else grants
>> You permission to use, copy, modify or distribute the software or its
>> derivative works. These actions are prohibited by law if You do not accept
>> this License.
> Would it be too much to instantiate a test which states that if the licence
> outright lies it's not DFSG-free? I'm not aware of any jurisdiction in
> which copyright law prohibits use.
I am not aware of any jurisdiction where they directly address use,
either. However, in many places, copying from nonvolatile storage to
RAM is protected by copyright. The USA protects execution as fair
use; European countries generally do not have an equivalent doctrine,
so a copyright license can effectively control use.
Section 12.8 is a choice of law for Washington state and US law, so
the US interpretation applies. I think the DFSG effect of the
"permission to use" clause depends on what section 12.5(a) means:
12.5 Severability. (a) If for any reason a court of competent
jurisdiction finds any provision of this License, or portion
thereof, to be unenforceable, that provision of the License will be
enforced to the maximum extent permissible so as to effect the
economic benefits and intent of the parties, and the remainder of
this License will continue in full force and effect. (b)
Notwithstanding the foregoing, if applicable law prohibits or
restricts You from fully and/or specifically complying with Sections
2 and/or 3 or prevents the enforceability of either of those
Sections, this License will immediately terminate and You must
immediately discontinue any use of the Covered Code and destroy all
copies of it that are in your possession or control.
I can't even guess what "so as to effect the economic benefits" (etc)
means in practice, although I can guess in a vague way what they
intend by it.
On the whole, I think the Dictator Test is a more general and elegant
solution to clauses that try to create non-copyright restrictions in a
free software license.