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Java, Python and GPL

Hi; me again.  Question this time regards packaging Jython (www.jython.org), 
a pure Java implementation of python.

Jython is currently subject to a DFSG-compilant but possibly GPL-incompatible 
license similar to that of python 2.0.

Jython also includes a class (ReadlineConsole.class) that links with the 
LGPLed lib-readline-java Java classes (uploaded to debian today) that in turn 
links to the GPLed libreadline.so using JNI (the Java-C interface).

Under default operation the ReadlineConsole class will not be used.  If a 
particular option is set in the jython configuration file, Jython will use 
ReadlineConsole which in turn links with libreadline.so.

Given that neither libreadline.so nor the LGPLed lib-readline-java classes 
are packaged as a part of Jython, and given the nature of java linking which 
is somewhat different from C linking, which of the following scenarios 

1) A binary distribution of Jython may include ReadlineConsole.class - it is 
up to the user to not violate the GPL.
2) A binary distribution of Jython may not include ReadlineConsole.class, but 
the corresponding source file ReadlineConsole.java may still be included in 
the sourceball.
3) The source file ReadlineConsole.java should be removed before anything is 

Furthermore, would it be legal to use reflection to see if functions 
Readline.readline() and Readline.initReadline() exist and if so call them?

Neither myself nor the Jython developer I am talking with are lawyers; any 
input from this list would be appreciated.

I'm CCing this to the Jython development list since IMHO this is an issue 
that transcends the debian packaging and affects Jython distribution in 



Ben Burton
benb@acm.org  |  bab@debian.org
Public Key: finger bab@debian.org

If God dislikes gays so much, how come he picked Michelangelo, a known
homosexual, to paint the Sistine Chapel ceiling while assigning Anita to
go on TV and push orange juice?
	- Chicago columnist Mike Royko

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