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Re: [PEAR-QA] PHP License

On Wednesday 24 August 2005 01:46 pm, Catatonic Porpoise wrote:
> Sean Kellogg wrote:
> >I'm pretty sure it is a PHP-derivative.  It relies on all sorts of built
> > in PHP functions to create the finished work.  Perhaps...  PERHAPS... 
> > the code you download for phpbb, on its own, MIGHT be a separate and
> > distinct work, but it's not "phpbb" until it's merged with PHP functions
> > to create the finished, derived work.
> I see a little problem with this line of reasoning. It would seem to
> imply that if I post a C program I wrote on my website, in source code
> form, that program is subject to the license of every libc anyone might
> ever compile it with.

I would think the code you post is just code.  You're free to post your own 
code as much as you like.  However, if I download that code and use it in 
conjunction with glibc, then yes, I must abide by the license chosen by the 
authors of glibc.  But it does raise an interesting question...

Assume the developer of phpBB never actually downloads PHP, and never agrees 
to the PHP3.0 license.  Develops the entire thing without any testing against 
PHP and then releases it, calling it phpBB in violation of the PHP3.0 
license.  Since the developer hasn't agreed to its terms, there is no 
enforcement mechanism.  But what about end users who have to use phpBB in 
conjunction with PHP?  Would it be a violation of the license to use PHP with 
a product whose name includes php in a prohibited manner?  An interesting 

But if we assume the developers of phpBB actually downloaded PHP, they agreed 
to not make derivative software with certain titles.  Going back to the C 
example you raised...  the developer of the C program must abide by the terms 
of the libc he or she chose to develop with.  What end users chose to do, or 
agree to, is not the developers concern.

> It would also seem to imply that if someone reimplemented PHP from
> scratch, phpBB would then be subject to that implementation's license as
> well.

I don't think so...  hopefully my rambling above cleared that up.

Sean Kellogg
3rd Year - University of Washington School of Law
Graduate & Professional Student Senate Treasurer
UW Service & Activities Committee Interim Chair 
w: http://www.probonogeek.org

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