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

On Wed, 2003-05-21 at 11:59, Brian T. Sniffen wrote:

> 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 every script that Debian distributes that makes use of features only
found in GPL tools must be under the GPL (since Debian can't use the
normal part of OS exception).

Let's take a concrete example: apache-ssl. In particular, it's postint.
It uses "adduser", which is under the GPL. It also uses update-rc.d,
also under the GPL. So, as above, we have to say the postinst is
available under the GPL. However, it also uses
/usr/sbin/ssl-certificate, which uses OpenSSL. It is well-known that the
GPL and the OpenSSL license are not compatible.

Is the above legal? If so, why? 

> The distinction really does come down to whether something is a
> derivative work:

	A ''derivative work'' is a work based upon one or
	more preexisting works, such as a translation,
	musical arrangement, dramatization, fictionalization,
	motion picture version, sound recording, art reproduction,
	abridgment, condensation, or any other form in which a
	work may be recast, transformed, or adapted. A work
	consisting of editorial revisions, annotations,
	elaborations, or other modifications which, as a whole,
	represent an original work of authorship, is a
	''derivative work''. (Title 17 USC, Sec. 101)

It's hard to see how a shell script could be a derivative work of grep
under that definition. I don't think the shell script is an
transformation, recasting, or adaption of grep. Or a modification.

> 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.

Where do you see that in the definition above?

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