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Re: non-free firmware in kernel modules, aggregation and unclear copyright notice.

Scripsit Sven Luther <sven.luther@wanadoo.fr>
> On Fri, Apr 08, 2005 at 03:10:43AM +0100, Henning Makholm wrote:
>> Scripsit Humberto Massa <humberto.massa@almg.gov.br>

>> > After a *lot* of discussion, it was deliberated on d-l that
>> > this is not that tricky at all, and that the "mere
>> > aggregation" clause applies to the combination, for various
>> > reasons, with a great degree of safety.

>> When was this alleged conclusion reached? I remember nothing like
>> that.

>   http://lists.debian.org/debian-legal/2005/03/msg00273.html

The point you seem to be arguing there is

| My understanding of this is that neither the firmware constitute a
| derived work from the flasher, nor the flasher constitute a derived
| work of the firmware.

which I agree with. But that is not the same thing as the above claim
by Humberto that a "mere aggregation" results from _linking_ those two
none-derived-from-the-other components.

>   http://lists.debian.org/debian-legal/2005/03/msg00283.html

Here you lose me at

| First we have to consider if the mere presense of the actual
| firmware non-free code in the linux driver is enough to make it a
| derived work or constitute mere aggregation.

As far as I can see you are assuming that it is either "a derived
work" or "mere aggregation", and cannot be both or neither. You then
try to argue that because it is not a derived work, it must me a mere
aggregation. I dispute the initial assumption; it appears to be
logically possible [1] that it is neither "derived work" or "mere

[1] And indeed plausible if one assumes a jurisdiction with a
    sufficiently narrow definition of "derived work".

(I wonder what happens in jurisdications whose copyright law is not
phrased in terms of "derived" - or that have several native words
which are given different explicit meaning by the local law but would
all need to be represented as a form of "derive" in English).

Henning Makholm               "Monarki, er ikke noget materielt ... Borger!"

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