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Re: GPL-script to be run on a non-free interpreter

On Sun, 2002-08-04 at 12:47, Steve Langasek wrote:
> On Sun, Aug 04, 2002 at 05:58:19PM +0200, Ralf Treinen wrote:
> > When I sent my ITP on debian-devel today, Moshe Zadka claimed that
> > even distributing maria-viz would be illegal.
> > http://lists.debian.org/debian-devel/2002/debian-devel-200208/msg00188.html
> > Can please someone advise whether this is really the case?
> It is ok to redistribute it by itself; if you distribute it with the
> interpreter (which is the case in Debian), I believe the GPL requires you
> to also distribute the interpreter's source under the GPL.  Therefore, if
> the interpreter is not GPL-compatible, the letter of the GPL says you
> cannot distribute this script in Debian.

Forgive my ignorance, but is this the general policy for GPL packages in
contrib that depend on packages in non-free?  It's been often quoted
that "contrib and non-free are not part of Debian"; I'm wondering if
this determination has an effect on the licensing question.

The idea in my head is that contrib and non-free are "separate".  Of
course, if you create a contrib/non-free CD, you might have problems,
but I thought that Debian didn't make any guarantees about third-party
distribution of non-free.

> However, you can do so easily if you get an exemption from the author
> saying it's ok to distribute it with the "lefty" interpreter in spite of
> the interpreter's license.  Legally, this is the least ambiguous
> solution, so I recommend seeking this license exception from the author
> to prevent future objections.

I can't argue with this logic, no matter the conclusion of my previous

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