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Re: Bad license on VCG?

On Tue, Aug 27, 2002 at 01:19:35AM -0500, Branden Robinson wrote:

> > VCG is currently in main, but is it distributable at all? The GPL doesn't
> > consider this source, IIRC.
> Yeah.  I don't think it is distributable, and therefore not DFSG-free.
> While the copyright holder can certainly distribute obfuscated source
> and no one can tell him not to, the GNU GPL by which the licensees
> (i.e., we, and our users) are bound requires them to distribute source
> in the "preferred form for modification", which is not available from
> the copyright holder.  Licensees cannot meaningfully fulfill the
> requirements of the GNU GPL, therefore they "may not distribute the
> Software at all".

I think you're a little over-zealous in your interpretation. The original
distributor is clearly the only entity not distributing what for them is
the preferred form for modification, and that's their prerogative. Whilst
we may not like it, I don't think it in any way makes it undistributable;
as far as we are concerned their commented sources don't exist -- to us,
the obfuscated source *is* the preferred form for modification.

I believe the relevant parts of the GPL are intended to prevent degradation
of the usefulness of sources as they are passed 'down the chain', not at
any point before it even enters the chain (as the GPL has no clout there).

> You should probably file a grave bug
> against this package.  Feel free to quote this mail.

I disagree. Feel free to quote this one too ;)



Nick Phillips -- nwp@lemon-computing.com
You can create your own opportunities this week.  Blackmail a senior executive.

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