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Re: Bug#189164: libdbd-mysql-perl uses GPL lib, may be used by GPL-incompatible apps

Anthony DeRobertis <asd@suespammers.org> writes:

> On Tue, 2003-05-20 at 05:15, Branden Robinson wrote:
>> I am uncomfortable with some of the ramifications but I am also
>> uncomfortable with totally declawing the GNU GPL by adopting and
>> interpretation of it that would let people wrapper and language-bind
>> their way out of the copyleft commons.
> At some point, we've got to draw a line where it's de-clawed. After all,
> I think we all agree that if a shell script calls GNU grep[0], it isn't
> required to be under the GPL.

I don't.  If it makes use of features specific to the GNU version, it
should either use the "normally part of your OS" exception, or if
distributed with GNU grep be itself available under the GNU GPL.

> So, is encapsulating code in the kernel's execve interface always OK?

The distinction really does come down to whether something is a
derivative work: a shell script which coincidentally uses generic grep
functions isn't a derivative work of grep.  A shell script which wraps
GNU grep to provide some of its peculiar functions to another program
is a derivative work of GNU grep.  There is a wide swath of gray down
the middle; this is where we hope people are reasonable, and if not
obey the wishes of the original authors.


> [0] Which, btw, has many extensions over POSIX or BSD grep,
>     so there is not, AFAIK, an alternative implementation.
>     Alternatively, put "gcc" or your favorite GPL program in
>     its place.

Brian T. Sniffen                                        bts@alum.mit.edu

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