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Re: Revised LaTeX Project Public License (LPPL)

On Thu, Apr 03, 2003 at 02:59:07PM -0800, Walter Landry wrote:
> Henning Makholm <henning@makholm.net> wrote:
> > But does that possibility make the original software non-free? Your
> > argument seems to be that it is possible to make a derived version
> > that is not free - but that possiblity exists for, say, the BSD
> > license as well.
> The difference is that you be putting your modifications under a
> different license.  Here, you're not changing the license, you're just
> modifying the code.

I don't know how it relates to the argument at hand, but I think the
possibility exists under the BSD license: simply take the source and
run it through an obfuscator before distributing it[1].  We wouldn't
consider the resulting package to be "free", but no license changes
were made.  It's even possible for outsiders to reconstruct an
approximation of the original source code and thus make it free again.

I think this has some similarity to the possibility of removing the
no-validation option, and undoing such a change will be even
easier than restoring obfuscated source.

Richard Braakman
[1] When I saw the code for the BSD glob() function, I suspected that
    this has already happened.

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