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Re: GPL, yet again. (The kernel is a lot like a shared library)

On Mon, Sep 12, 2005 at 09:39:14PM +0200, Alexander Terekhov wrote:
Alexander> Yorick Cool wrote:
Alexander> [...]
Alexander> > The reasoning is pretty simple. As Sean said, it is based on the 
Alexander> > understanding that the GPL is a contract. 
Alexander> Yeah. Except that everybody and his dog knows that the FSF's 
Alexander> position is that GPL != contract. Moglen and RMS now call it 
Alexander> "The Constitution" (of the GNU Republic, I suppose). 

Well, either you consider the FSF's positions are authoritative and then you have to
accept them all (including the dynamic linking business), or you admit
you can depart with any of their assertions. In this case, the FSF's opinion
notwithstanding, the GPL is a contract, there is no solid legal reasoning to suggest
otherwise. On the linking issue, there are arguments for both positions.

And, as an aside, in civil law at least, the court has full power as to how to qualify an
act -- say it is a contract, or license, or whatever -- but is bound by the parties intent
of the act's intended effects, in the limit of what the law allows.

Alexander> C'mon, the GPL drafter RMS is on record:

When he speaks as it's drafter, he has no authority, legally speaking -- expect if his view
reflects common practice. If he speaks as a licensor, his view is authoritative insofar as
it is accepted by the licensee.

Yorick Cool
Chercheur au CRID
Rempart de la Vierge, 5
B-5000 Namur
Tel: + 32 (0)81 72 47 62 /+32 (0)81 51 37 75
Fax: + 32 (0)81 72 52 02

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