This is old FUD (Was: Re: Eclipse 3.0 Running ILLEGALY on Kaffe)
Michael Poole wrote:
I think the disagreement is over what effect Debian's choice has.
It is not clear to me that saying either "Y depends on the JVM" or "Y
depends on Kaffe or some Java interpreter" is creative within the
meaning of copyright law or that it creates any sort of derivative
work. However, it does seem like clear copyright abuse for a Kaffe
contributor to sue a DD because that DD identified Kaffe as fitting
the program's JVM requirement.
Even if some Kaffe contributor wanted to do that, they couldn't, as long
as the work does not derive from parts of Kaffe that are copyrightable.
Just because someone's data contains the sequence of chars
"java.lang.Object", it does not constitute a derivative work from
Kaffe's interpreter (obviously), or class libraries, as that particular
string is, for a lot of reasons, not copyrightable by Kaffe developers.
The GPL does not restrict use, and the copyright law doesn't give the
authors of an interpreter a way to limit its use, nor wouldn't any Kaffe
author wish to do that, afaik.
The 'GPL of an application infects everything it touches' FUD is pushed
forward by Microsoft in general, and a few SableVM developers in
Would it make any legal difference if the package Depends: kaffe |
sablevm | java-runtime? It seems easy enough to use the LGPLed
sablevm if kaffe's GPL is thought to pose problems.
It only causes problems if you believe SableVM developers, who are not
copyright holders in either Kaffe or Eclipse, afaik. I assume that the
hope is that by enough 'fudraising' about Kaffe, Debian users and
packagers will 'switch' to use SableVM exclusively for their needs, if
only to escape being harassed by a handful of people with unfounded
assertions that the Debian users and packagers are doing something illegal.
This is a simply regular FUD campaign against Kaffe by a handful of
people from a 'competing', technically inferior project, that has been
going on for years and years. It's been discussed on debian-legal
already, when SableVM developers falsely claimed that Debian was
shipping undistributable Java in main in November 2003. It turned out
that that was not the case, but nevertheless the same few people keep
regularly playing debian-legal as if it was a one-armed-jack in hope for
a jackpot that would ratify their
I'm sorry it causes everyone to waste so much time with this crap, but
it's not coming from Kaffe developers. In contrary, it is pissing off
some Kaffe developers, like me, to have waste their time debunking this
infantile 'K4FF3 15 1LL3G4L, U53 54B13' bullshit every time there is a
new release of SableVM to 'market'.