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Re: Cheops-ng: DFSG free or non-free?

"Wesley W. Terpstra" <terpstra@ito.tu-darmstadt.de> writes:

> I have a package which has in the COPYING file this text:
> Cheops is distributed under the terms of the GNU General Public License.
> In addition, Adtran's name MAY NOT be removed from the product (or any
> derivative work) and must be prominantly displayed in any "About" box,
> documentation, product literature, etc. (BSD style).  In many cases,
> written exceptions for this rule can be obtained by e-mailing the authors:

That's not a consistent license.  In particular, if they're linking
against *any GPL'd code at all* they're in violation of the license on
that code.
> Brent Priddy (toopriddy@mailcity.com)
> ----
> Then the standard GPL v2 follows.
> I wanted to check whether this means the package is DFSG or not.

It may not be distributable at all.  If it is distributable, let's
look at the differences between the GPL interactive-use clause, the
old-BSD advertising clause, and this.

First off, unlike the GPL clause, this applies even when the
derivative work is not interactive in any way -- say, part of a
library in an embedded system.  It applies anywhere there's an "About"
box.  That may or may not be OK.  But it also differs critically from
the old BSD advertising clause in requiring prominent display.  That's
not Free.

Perhaps you can contact the copyright holder, point out the
interactive-use clause of the GPL, and ask that he rely solely on that
instead of on an extra restriction?  Also, it would be wise to check
on whether actually-GPLd code is being used.  Good luck.


> I Know the advertizing clause in BSD is allowed, but GPL incompatible.
> So, what does that mean for a package where the copyright holder distributes
> the package with an extra clause and GPL? Can I redistribute it at all?
> PS. Please CC me on replies as I am not subscribed.
> -- 
> Wesley W. Terpstra

Brian Sniffen                                       bts@alum.mit.edu

>  LocalWords:  distributable

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