Re: Contracts and licenses
On Tue, 2004-06-29 at 19:11, Brian Thomas Sniffen wrote:
> If you ever see a license which suggests the death penalty, I do hope
> you'll consider it non-free.
The license can never suggest such thing (i believe so also in BR law -
certainly belgian law), because the criminal part is enforced in
separate criminal laws. in those laws there will be a minimum/maximum,
which under circumstances can be lower/raised by the judge, but these
criminal penalties can *only* be given by a judge. any clause concerning
criminal penalties are de iure null and void. there is a very strict
distinction between civil law and criminal law (not civil as opposed to
statute law, but as opposed to criminal/public law), although one and
the same event can give both a breach in civil and criminal law. (though
for economy of procedure they will be handled by the same judge, they do
follow separate rules).
this is grossly incorrect, as to get every nuance right, i'd need a few
100 pages, so read this with due discretion.
also, in belgian law, a judge can exercise great discretion in
qualifying a contract, and in tempering clauses to the intention of the
parties involved. and even in very strict, no nonsense clauses, in
general belgian law produces more temperate results than american for
example. and certainly in a case of a license, which is a contract than
can hardly be negotiated (it's an offer to take or leave), the judge has
even more discretion. and this is becoming true in general for europe,
as a lot of EU law tends to this trend.
and a last note, i did not take the necessary time to investigate this
problem in great extent (which would take days), so again, please
consider it with the necessary precaution.
"The first thing we do, let's kill all the lawyers"
Henry VI, part 2