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Re: [PEAR-QA] PHP License

On Wednesday 24 August 2005 02:17 pm, Måns Rullgård wrote:
> Sean Kellogg <skellogg@u.washington.edu> writes:
> > 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...
> [...]
> > 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.
> I build my code on a variety of systems, including Linux/glibc, *BSD,
> Solaris, AIX, MacOSX, etc.  Does this mean that my programs are
> derivatives of all these C libraries/compilers?

Yeah, I believe so.  This is why glibc is under the LGPL.
It's really easy to create derived works under U.S. Law.

As a side note, there is some really interesting unexplored areas of law 
relating to derivative works and things like dynamic vs. static linked 
libraries.  There is some case law, but I think it leaves a lot unanswered.  
For the purposes of this discussion, I'm supporting the popular contention 
that using a dynamically linked library creates a derivative work (although, 
I have my doubts).


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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