Re: Kernel Firmware issue: are GPLed sourceless firmwares legal to distribute ?
On 10/6/06, MJ Ray <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote:
I'd defer to Larry Doolittle on this one, but I think unless we have
some reason to think there is another form used as source code, it's
fine to consider the only codes our source code - for all we know, it
was written that way. Best of all would be to get clarifications of
what type each firmware is, but I doubt that's easy in all cases.
However, if we strongly suspect that we don't have a valid permission
to modify, distribute and so on, run a mile.
I'd like to note a message by Frank Küster concerning this on
debian-vote which wasn't posted to debian-legal. A quote from that
: In making the list, I left off all cases where I had any doubt.
: I am not perfect, but I have plenty of experience using and writing
: firmware of many kinds. I would be very surprised if any of the
: listed firmware is not derived from a human-legible design file of
: one form or another.
: So while it is perhaps a polite excuse that "we don't know for sure
: if these thousands of bytes of hex code were ever compiled from source",
: no sane person would bet against it.
(And my answer was that IMHO it's not "a polite excuse" but "a
blatant attempt to knowingly violate the copyright law without
actually admitting the violation".)