Re: Question about DFSG and a THC project
Sam Hartman wrote:
> I will admit that I thought this was true for all works not just for
> modified works. So in my original example, you could actually
> continue distributing the original program that contained GPL plus an
> OpenSSL exception. However, if you modified the work, you were not
> obligated to pass along the OpenSSL exception.
Certainly. This is fairly normal -- you don't have to pass on the exception
with your derived work.
> It's not actually
> clear you even had the necessary rights to do so.
Now this is important. You generally should, if the license is written
properly... but you're right that there seem to be errors in the writing.
A refresher course: If work B is a derived work of work A, you need two
licenses: one for work A (from A's copyright holder) and one for work B
(from B's copyright holder). Suppose that A is licensed under the GPL,
plus an OpenSSL exception. Then B could be licensed under the GPL. Or it
could have its own OpenSSL exception.
Now, in order for B to legally be linked with OpenSSL (assuming linking is
legally restrictable -- let's not open that can of worms right now), what
does A's OpenSSL exception need to say? It needs to say that A's copyright
holder grants permission for A *and all derived works based on A* to be
linked with OpenSSL, insofar as these rights would be restricted by A's
It's true that many of these clauses don't seem to consider derived works,
and so only literally grant permission for the *original* to be linked to
I think it's reasonable to interpret them as granting the appropriate
permission for derived works if the authors say that that's what they
intended. But in that case, why not just get them to rewrite it
There are none so blind as those who will not see.