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Re: Documenting copyright holders in debian/copyright

On Wed, Oct 31, 2018 at 04:30:23AM +0000, Scott Kitterman wrote:
> On October 31, 2018 3:59:42 AM UTC, Adrian Bunk <bunk@debian.org> wrote:
> >On Tue, Oct 30, 2018 at 09:34:59PM -0400, Scott Kitterman wrote:
> >>...
> >> 1.  Most licenses require copyright statements to be included.	In the
> >FTP 
> >> team's view, unless a license explicitly states that  copyright
> >attributions 
> >> only apply to source distributions, they apply for source and binary,
> >so must 
> >> be documented in debian/copyright for license compliance reasons.
> >>...
> >> GPL requires an "appropriate copyright notice" for both source and
> >binary 
> >> forms.
> >
> >My reading of 7(b) of GPLv3 would be that it is not required.
> ...
> Section 7 is about "material you add to a covered work", it's not about things someone else has copyright on.  See section 4 which is referenced by Section 5 for source distribution and Section 6 for binary distribution.

IANAL, my reading would not be that listing every single copyright 
holder is required by the term "appropriate copyright notice".

But if it is (or is for any other licence), allowing any exception in 
the archive would IMHO be irresponsible:

This would mean distributing something on our mirrors that we consider
to be a copyright violation.

Any affected copyright holder would basically be invited to take legal 
actions against a mirror in a jurisdiction of their choice if they want.

The effects of some university having to pay the costs associated with
signing a cease and desist letter for distributing Debian would not
be pretty.

Has any lawyer been consulted regarding what our legal requirements are?

> Scott K



       "Is there not promise of rain?" Ling Tan asked suddenly out
        of the darkness. There had been need of rain for many days.
       "Only a promise," Lao Er said.
                                       Pearl S. Buck - Dragon Seed

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