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Re: Kernel Firmware issue: are GPLed sourceless firmwares legal to distribute ?

Sven Luther <sven.luther@wanadoo.fr> wrote:
> So, the RMs are making claims that those sourceless GPLed drivers
> don't cause any kind of distribution problem, while i strongly
> believe that the GPL clause saying that all the distribution rights
> under the GPL are lost if you cannot abide by all points, including
> the requirement for sources.

When Debian distributes kernel binaries, Debian makes use of clause 3a
(accompany with source code), not 3b (written offer) or 3c (pass on
written offer).  So source has to accompany everything, even if no one
is asking.

Debian may decide to make a policy decision that the chances of anyone
getting sued are slim.  That is presumably what Red Hat etc. are
doing.  Red Hat's risk profile is a bit different, in that Red Hat
would probably be sued directly, while it is more likely that Debian's
mirrors and CD distributors would be the target of a lawsuit (and not,
for example, the ftpmasters).

Walter Landry

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