Re: Dangerous precedent being set - possible serious violation of the GPL
On Mon, 29 Nov 1999, Erich Forler wrote:
> If you're referring to the following section,
> "All right, title and interest in the Software Programs, including source
> code, documentation, appearance, structure and organization, are held by
> Corel Corporation, Corel Corporation Limited, and others and are protected
> by copyright and other laws."
> the "and others" covers everyone who already has title to the included software. It
> doesn't extend Corel's title over the existing software it simply puts title over
> the components that are created by Corel. Essentially, it enforces the ownership of
> the original creators.
You'll note I said "title to the copy", not "title to the copyright".
I am referring to:
ATTENTION:THIS IS A LICENSE, NOT A SALE. THIS PRODUCT IS PROVIDED UNDER
THE FOLLOWING AGREEMENT WHICH DEFINES WHAT YOU (HEREAFTER REFERRED
TO AS "YOU" OR "YOUR") MAY DO WITH THE PRODUCT AND CONTAINS LIMITATIONS
ON WARRANTIES AND/OR REMEDIES.
You know, the typical EULA claptrap that attempts to circumvent the
first sale doctrine and subsequent fair use. There's no reason to make
this pretense with the free software portion of the distribution.
The way I see it (and IANAL), the GPL (and other free software
licenses) are copyright licenses that accompany copies of software. If I
never receive actual ownership of the copy, it's not clear that I would
receive the accompanying license, or that the license would require my
receipt of it. In the case of the GPL, I don't think this would be a
problem (since public distribution has occured even without transfer of
ownership - I _think_). Nonetheless, I'd rather not anyone view this as a
potential way to circumvent free licenses, if it is, in fact, not.
I am not claiming this is Corel's intent. I am more worried about the
precedent it creates. Consider the current industry desire to push
software "rental" from the internet. Or consider me excessively paranoid.