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Re: PHPNuke license



On Tue, Mar 04, 2003 at 04:26:17PM -0600, John Goerzen wrote:
> On Tue, Mar 04, 2003 at 04:31:17PM -0500, Branden Robinson wrote:
> > Can you remind me of the advantages of NOT interpreting as "object form"
> > as "any form other than the preferred form for modification"?
> 
> For the detailed description, see
> http://lists.debian.org/debian-legal/2003/debian-legal-200303/msg00131.html

I've read it.

> In a nutshell, I don't know of any reasonable person that would define
> "object code" as the output of tr a-z A-Z on a text file.

Nice to meet you.  :)  That is, I'm perfectly willing to accept that as
an example of "object code" if the only alternative is to call it
"source code".

> By altering the definition here, we create ambiguity.  This makes
> things weak in the court, more litigation-prone, and harder to
> interpret -- as we see here.
>
> If a court looks at this, and sees "object code", can we really know in
> advance if they would use the normal definition or this "liberal" one?  I
> suspect they would use the normal one, which is another problem.

What if we had a license like the GPL that used "source form" instead of
"source code", "transformed form" instead of "object code" and
"executable form", and "Work" instead of "Program"?

> If the license iteself defined object form that way, that'd be one thing. 
> (It'd be confusing, but we could evaluate it only one way.)
> But it doesn't define "object code" at all.

The FSF does provide a hint, by saying "object code or executable form"
in two places.  They probably figured an expert witness or two would be
able to dispose of the issue should it ever reach court.

-- 
G. Branden Robinson                |     Don't use nuclear weapons to
Debian GNU/Linux                   |     troubleshoot faults.
branden@debian.org                 |     -- US Air Force Instruction 91-111
http://people.debian.org/~branden/ |

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