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Re: Eclipse 3.0 Running ILLEGALY on Kaffe

> > [3] Debian dependencies.  [The GPL doesn't seem to have any requirements
> > in this area.]

On Sun, Jan 16, 2005 at 09:06:31PM -0500, Walter Landry wrote:
> Actually, it does.  The GPL says (with some parts elided)
>   If sections are separate works, then this License does not apply to
>   those sections __when you distribute them as separate works__.  But
>   when you distribute the __same__ sections as part of a whole which
>   is a work based on the Program, the distribution of the whole must
>   be on the terms of this License.

You seem to be begging the question.

The GPL doesn't say that.  I'm guessing that the paragraph you've
rephrased is:

   These requirements apply to the modified work as a whole. If
   identifiable sections of that work are not derived from the Program,
   and can be reasonably considered independent and separate works in
   themselves, then this License, and its terms, do not apply to those
   sections when you distribute them as separate works. But when you
   distribute the same sections as part of a whole which is a work
   based on the Program, the distribution of the whole must be on the
   terms of this License, ...

This does not equate to debian's dependencies.  The GPL has very clearly
limited its scope (to "the Program" and/or a "work based on the Program")
and debian can have dependencies for any of a variety of reasons not
relating those particular concepts.

In other words, you can't answer the question is this thing an
example of "the Program" or a "work based on the Program" with
a condition which exists only for modified copies of "the Program"
or a "work based on the Program".

> If I give you a CD with Eclipse and Kaffe on it, I have given you a
> whole work which will edit programs.

"which will edit programs" is:

[a] Not an issue for Copyright law.  (No one seems to question this.)

[b] Not an issue for the GPL.  (The GPL explicitly states that it does
not restrict running the program.)

> You may not even know what Kaffe is, but if you don't have it, Eclipse
> is not going to run.

(Unless you have another JVM installed.  Which you may or may not
know about.)

> That sure sounds like it makes up part of the whole which is an IDE.

Which is a functional issue, and does not appear to be an issue under
either copyright law, or the GPL.

This is further underlined by the fact that Kaffe is not an IDE.

> This relationship is well expressed by Debian dependencies.

Sure, but this relationship doesn't matter in the context of the GPL.

Kaffe is a Java Virtual Machine.  You run Java programs on it.  That's
what it does.  Java programs are almost never derivative works of Kaffe
any more than text files are derivative works of emacs.

> Now, it is true that Eclipse will run with other JVMs. But if they
> are not on the CD, then it doesn't matter.

By "it doesn't matter", I presume you mean "they won't be available
for the user to install from that CD, and if they haven't already been
installed on the user's system they won't be available for that user."
In other words, you're still talking about running the program.  If you
meant something else, please say it less ambiguously.

> The GPL cares about what it is distributed with, not about stuff it
> could be distributed with.

The only context where the GPL cares about what it is section 3.  There
are two cases which matter there:

[1] There's the issue of distributing the source code which goes with
the binary (for a GPL'd work).

[2] There's the special OS exception from the source code requirement
(when parts of a GPLed work require something always available with
the OS, you don't need to distribute the source code for those parts of
that OS).

But we're trying to answer the question of whether or not this is a
GPLed work...

> And the only thing allowed on the CD is stuff in main, because this
> whole argument is over whether Eclipse can go into main.  Not whether
> Eclipse is distributable at all.

If the GPL restricts Kaffe from being distributed with Eclipse then the
GPL does so regardless of whether Eclipse is in main.  So if Eclipse
can't go in main because the GPL says that it's illegal to distribute
Kaffe when we distribute Eclipse, then this is the case regardless of
whether Eclipse is in main or in contrib.

Now, if Eclipse was the GPLed work, and Kaffe was GPL incompatible,
we'd have other problems with section 3.  But no one is claiming that
Eclipse is a part of Kaffe.

> > If you're simply going to assert that "this is not mere aggregation"
> > and are not going to provide any good reasons for that assertion, what
> > is it that you're contributing to this discussion?
> I feel like there are an awful lot of people that want to get Eclipse
> into main ASAP, and are not fond of thinking through licensing issues.
> It is hardly the first time.

Which licensing terms?  The only one you've presented for consideration
was an almost unrecognizable paragraphrase of a part of the GPL which
is irrelevant in this context.

> There are a few ways to fix this whole issue

The first step in fixing "this issue" should be: properly identifying
the issue that needs to be fixed.


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