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Re: Dangerous precedent being set - possible serious violation of the GPL

Erich Forler writes:

> As a guess, perhaps the distinction is raised to differentiate between the
> "Product" - "Corel Linux" and the "programs" included on the disc. In some
> circumstances, there is a differentiation.

This is a distinction which some people have seemed unwilling to acknowledge,
but it is important.  There is no reason that Corel is _not_ allowed to apply 
any EULA it chooses to the product as a whole, as long as that EULA does not
prejudice users' rights under existing licenses.

Since almost all of the people reading the EULA are not lawyers, they are
not sure, offhand, whether or not the EULA has the effect of trying to
"impose any further restrictions upon" or "sublicense" GPLed software.  A
lot of them seem to believe that is does.

Since the EULA explicitly acknowledges the existence and applicability of
a variety of license terms, including the GPL, for the various components of
the system, I suspect that is does not -- but I'm not a lawyer.

For the benefit of the general public, which is mostly neither lawyers nor
specialists in this peculiar world of free software licensing, it would be
very useful if the Corel Linux EULA contained an explicit, unambiguous
statement about the status of the licenses of free software packages
within the product.

That statement could say that these licenses are public licenses, whose
permissions are automatically granted to anyone receiving a copy; that
they allow (use,) modification, and redistribution subject to certain
terms; and that their grant of rights is not in any way restricted or
modified by the EULA.

This may already be the legal consequence of the EULA, but, for the benefit
of people who are not familiar with all of the free software licenses, and
not easily able to determine this for themselves, it would be helpful to
have this clarified.

I would also like to see something done about that export paragraph. :-)
Corel should avoid any suggestion that its EULA makes illegal export of
free software into a civil copyright violation, since that would certainly
be resisted by many of the original package authors and contributors.

Seth David Schoen <schoen@loyalty.org>  | And do not say, I will study when I
Temp.  http://www.loyalty.org/~schoen/  | have leisure; for perhaps you will
down:  http://www.loyalty.org/   (CAF)  | not have leisure.  -- Pirke Avot 2:5

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