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"object code" in the GPL and printed copies


since I couldn't find it in the archive, I have to ask here: Has it been
discussed, and if yes to what end, whether a printed version (of a
GPL'ed document) would be "object code" as treated in section 3,

|   3. You may copy and distribute the Program (or a work based on it,
| under Section 2) in object code or executable form under the terms of
| Sections 1 and 2 above provided that you also do one of the following:

On the one hand, treating printed copies of the work just the same as
any digital "compiled" version sounds logical and in the intent of the

On the other hand, a book or booklet is something very different from a
PDF or PostScript file, and probably more so in the view of lawyers and
judges than ordinary netizens.  Therefore an alternative interpretation
could also be used: That paper copies of the document are not addressed
at all by the license (and can therefore be more restricted by the
copyright holder, like for non-commercial use only).

And of course, the main concern why I ask this here: If an author
intents their documentation to be as freely usable as their program (and
therefore wants to license it under the program's license), but wants to
restrict commercial trade of the printed version, and therefore assumes
the second interpretation, would such a document qualify for Debian
(main, of course)?

TIA, Frank
Frank Küster
Single Molecule Spectroscopy, Protein Folding @ Inst. f. Biochemie, Univ. Zürich
Debian Developer (teTeX)

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