I wanted to ask about the debian/copyright file, I am currently working
on a package (openjpeg a jpeg2000 library) that has a long and
complicated copyright history. What i mean by that is there have been
many contributors over the years and therefor very few files have
identical copyright lines as different authors have contributed to
I have been following the guidelines for the proposed copyright file
format http://wiki.debian.org/Proposals/CopyrightFormat as previously
suggested to me by Paul Wise here on mentors. I know this format is not
policy but it seems to serve as a reasonable guideline.
My main questions are :-
1) is it necessary to repeat the license text every time, for example :-
Copyright: © 2002-2007, Communications and Remote Sensing Laboratory,
Universite catholique de Louvain (UCL), Belgium
© 2002-2007, Professor Benoit Macq
© 2001-2003, David Janssens
© 2002-2003, Yannick Verschueren
© 2003-2007, Francois-Olivier Devaux and Antonin Descampe
© 2005, Herve Drolon, FreeImage Team
© 2006-2007, Parvatha Elangovan
Redistribution and use in source and binary forms, with or without .....
...... Full Text ......
Would it be allowable to just state "BSD-2" for each of the cases then
define the full text at one point in the file?
There are a couple of files that do NOT have copyright, these were
created by a US government contractor and therefor :-
Copyright: It is the policy of NLM (U.S. National Library of Medicine)
(and U.S. government) to not assert copyright.
A non-exclusive copy of this code has been contributed to the Open JPEG
Except for copyright, inclusion of the code within Open JPEG for
distribution and use
can be bound by the Open JPEG open-source license and disclaimer,
Is this a problem at all, not having asserted copyright?
Finally many files have the same set of authors and copyright years, but
then there is a file with an extra contributor here or there, should
each of these files be listed separately with its own list of copyright
holders? To me this seems the *correct* way to do things and each file
that does not fall under the Files: * catch all list should have its own
entry in the debian/copyright file. Or can i just add the extra
contributors to the initial Files: * Copyright: xxx yy zzz
List even though those extra contributors do not have copyright over all
the files included in that search, files have same license however.
(Seems incorrect to me)
This is much less of a problem if the license text does not need to be
repeated each time.
Just wanted to check the *correct* way to do do things.
Thanks in advance