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Re: You can't get a copy unless you accept the GPL [was: Re: libkrb53 - odd license term]



On Sun, 6 Jun 2004 10:45:59 -0700 Adam McKenna wrote:

> On Sun, Jun 06, 2004 at 11:08:50AM +0200, Francesco Poli wrote:
> > On Fri, 4 Jun 2004 23:25:18 -0700 Adam McKenna wrote:
> > 
> > > the reason you can copy a file
> > > which has been released under the GPL without accepting the GPL is
> > > because you are explicitly granted that right by the GPL.
> > 
> > I don't think so: you are not granted any right by a license, unless
> > you accept the license itself.
> > Hence, I don't see how could the GPL grant any right to make copies
> > to someone who is not willing to accept the GPL itself.
> 
> Please read the GPL, specifically sections 5 and 6.  You only have to
> accept the license if you wish to modify or distribute the work.

Ooops. I apologize for not having recalled this.

> 
> I'm not going to participate in any more semantic arguments or legal
> 101 on what the definitions of the words 'distribute' or 'copy' are.

Could you please provide a good reference to some clear definition?
I hope I know the difference, but I'd better check anyway... :p

> If you are confused about copyrights in general, please go to 
> http://www.loc.gov/copyright and read the text entitled "copyright
> basics".

Well, *now* I'm a bit confused. At
http://www.copyright.gov/circs/circ1.html
I read the following:

é[ Section 106 of the 1976 Copyright Act generally gives the owner of
[ copyright the exclusive right to do and to authorize others to do the
[ following:
[
[    * To reproduce the work in copies or phonorecords;
...

AFAIK the reasoning behind GPL#5 is that only the license gives me some
rights, hence I must have implicitly accepted it, if I exercise those
rights.
U.S. Copyright law (and many other copyright laws, I suppose) lists the
right to make copies as one of the copyright owner's exclusive rights.

That would bring me to the conclusion that I must accept the GPL in
order to make a copy of a GPL'd work.

See for example GPL#4:

[   4. You may not copy, modify, sublicense, or distribute the Program
[ except as expressly provided under this License.


On the other hand GPL#5 itself says I'm required to accept the GPL only
in order to distribute or modify...

Could you explain how's that possible?


-- 
             |  GnuPG Key ID = DD6DFCF4 | You're compiling a program
  Francesco  |        Key fingerprint = | and, all of a sudden, boom!
     Poli    | C979 F34B 27CE 5CD8 DC12 |         -- from APT HOWTO,
             | 31B5 78F4 279B DD6D FCF4 |             version 1.8.0

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