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Re: license of cstex / cslatex



On Fri, 26 May 2006 00:05:09 -0400 Joe Smith wrote:

> 
> "Thomas Esser" <te@dbs.uni-hannover.de> wrote in message 
[...]
> > Questions:
> >    - is it valid to refer to GPL and add such severe restrictions in
> >      an appendix?
> 
> It is legal AFAIK (IANAL), but is relly poor form.

I don't agree.
It may be legal, but, as RMS stated clearly, it's self-contradictory.
Why?
Because on the one hand the copyright holder says that no further
restrictions (beyond the ones found in the GPL terms) can be imposed on
recipients (see GPLv2, section 6).
On the other hand he himself adds one such restriction.

As a consequence, we probably end up not having a valid license for this
file.
No license implies "All Rights Reserved", that is to say, the file is
not only non-free, it's undistributable!

To state the matter differently, in order to redistribute the file we
must try to comply with its license, which is GPLv2 + restrictions.
To comply with GPLv2 section 6, we cannot "impose any further
restrictions on the recipients' exercise of the rights granted herein"
(that is to say, in the GPL text).
But one such restriction is already imposed by the copyright holder, and
we cannot remove it, because the law forbids us to grant permissions on
behalf of the copyright holder.
As a consequence, we cannot redistribute while complying with the
license.
Thus the file is undistributable, strictly speaking.

[...]
> >    - is this a "free software" license in the FSF definition?
> Probably, but name changing clauses are a pain.

I don't even think that this is a valid license, so this second question
becomes pointless.

> 
> >    - is this license free enough to allow an inclusion of the
> >    software
> >      into debian?
> 
> I believe it is DFSG-free, but it is not a great licence. 

I believe the file is undistributable.

-- 
    :-(   This Universe is buggy! Where's the Creator's BTS?   ;-)
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  Francesco Poli                             GnuPG Key ID = DD6DFCF4
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