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Re: the FSF's GPLv3 launch conference

On 1/7/06, Florian Weimer <fw@deneb.enyo.de> wrote:
> * Alexander Terekhov:
> > Unrestricted downloads of the GPL'd stuff aside for a moment, the GPL
> > gives me a copy or two. Thank you. The distribution of those copies (as
> > I see fit) is made under 17 USC 109, not the GPL. Being not a contract
> > (according to the FSF), the GPL is irrelevant at the time of distribution.
> Sure, some parts of the GPL are highly questionable (especially the
> termination clause).  But according to the usual interpretation of
> copyright law, you are still not allowed to distribute modified copies
> of a computer program, even if the original copy was obtain legally
> from the copyright holder.

That's because absent a permission to prepare derivative works,
modifications fall under restricted "adaptations" under 17 USC 117
(presuming they are done within its scope). But once you've got
a permission to prepare derivative works... it's then the same as
with exact copies -- thank you for your not-a-contract/no-promises-
made-in-exchange unilateral permission to prepare derivative works
and make copies, now it's time for 17 USC 109, dear Prof. Moglen.


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