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RE: Copyright Question

Hi Chris

Very pragmatic reasoning.  I wondered the same thing.  From a practical standpoint, why would someone ask us for source code (ie, order it, pay for replication costs, then wait for it to be shipped) when you could download immediately for free.  In any event we want to error on the side of caution and will cite the applicable language from the GPL.

Thanks for taking the time to reply. 

Mike Skaggs  

-----Original Message-----
From: Christopher Priest [mailto:chris@priestdata.com]
Sent: Tuesday, December 07, 2004 1:05 PM
To: Josh Triplett; mike_skaggs@agilent.com
Cc: debian-legal@lists.debian.org
Subject: Re: Copyright Question

Wouldn't a typical install of Debian also properly install all the licenses
required? Do the Debian install scripts break the licenses of the component
software? Disk space is so cheap I can't see any developer spending time to
remove anything put in by an install.

Why would he have to do more than say this product contains Debian xxx see
http://www.debian.org/ for license information and add a list of packages
installed similar to what dpkg -l would show.

I'm not saying that it is good enough right now but I that think it should

Why should anyone but the source be "required" to keep or distribute source
code when it is freely available from Debian. The web was not available when
the license was conceived. If I were a judge, and I looked at the intent of
the license, I'd say the flavour and intent is served by proper attribution,
and reasonable access to the source as intended, especially if it was by
reference to the source web site.and I'd note that this user was not tring
to assume ownership.

Law is about damages, not about forcing people to do what you want..

What would be the damages to someone giving away their software on the web
if he gave the notice I suggest?
He is not creating a competing proprietary product out of their work, he is
not interfering with their income stream, he is even promoting them. This is
quite different from a company misappropriating GPL code.

However if he made modification to the code in order to support embedding
and did not release the code back to the community then damages to the
extent of reproducing such modifications would be liable.


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