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Re: Script to generate common license texts

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On ??? 05 ???????????? 2015 03:53 ????, Jonas Smedegaard wrote:
> Either upstream states actual licensing terms, or refer to external
>  licensing terms.  It seems we use the term "boilerplate"
> differently: I don't call it "boilerplate" when upstream states
> actual licensing terms (e.g. Expat written out rather than by
> reference).
> Upstream "should" do whatever they want - but yes, if upstream
> state licensing terms ambiguously then we cannot redistribute their
> project, so it makes sense to suggest them to clarify if we are
> uncertain what they mean (e.g. when stating "MIT" without URL or
> actual licensing terms - because that may refer to several
> different actual terms).
> When upstream states "Released under MIT." then a) the actual
> licensing terms are not included and b) actual licensing terms are
> uncertain. We then should add in debian/copyright the upstream
> statement verbatim, add the actual licensing terms - also verbatim,
> and ideally also add a comment on our reasoning for resolving
> license terms from license grant.
> When upstream states "Released under GPL 2." then terms are
> similarly not included but (arguably) certain.  We then should
> again add in debian/copyright the upstream statement verbatim, and
> (because we can) refer to /usr/share/common-licenses/GPL-2. We do
> *not* need¹ to also add the boilerplate included in the GPL license
> text under the title "How to Apply These Terms to Your New
> Programs" - exactly because we are not creating a new program ;-)
> If by boilerplate you mean common sets of actual licensing terms
> (e.g. Expat) then true, it might be convenient with a tool that can
> spit out verbatim texts we do not ship below
> /usr/share/common-licenses.
> If by boilerplate you mean common _reference_ for sets of common 
> licensing term (e.g. the FSF-recommended text for GPL licenses)
> then wrong: There is no need for adding such additional text to 
> debian/copyright if upstream did not state it using those exact
> same words. Because such text is then neither verbatim copy of
> upstream statement nor actual licensing terms.
> If you have trouble locating actual licensing terms, then take that
> as indication that those reading the copyright file you are writing
> may have trouble too: When you've succeeded locating the actual
> licensing terms then consider add a comment on where you found
> them, and your reasoning for why that location is believed to be
> reasonably correct.
> Practivally, if you use the machine-readable copyright file format,
> then first line has a URL to a web page, which links to licenses at
> SPDX: http://spdx.org/licenses
> Hope that helps,

Cool. That makes it clear. Thanks.

- -- 
Balasankar C
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