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Binaries and MIT/expat license interpretative tradition

(My question is not Debian-related, but I figured the people who know the answer read this list.)

The usual interpretation (seen in the list archives) of the MIT/expat license seems to be the that the copyright notice needs to be retained in the source but does not have to be displayed by binaries.

The license does not say that the binaries do not constitute a copy of "the Software". What's the basis of the interpretation and that the copyright notices do not need to be grepped from the source and stuffed in an about box or similarly placed on binaries?

I have written MIT/expat-licensed code thinking that I am not placing an obnoxious notice burden on binaries. Now I have to explain that I am not, and I can't just waive the notice requirement in cases where I am not the sole copyright holder. Should I switch to the zlib license for code that I can relicense?

Henri Sivonen

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