[Date Prev][Date Next] [Thread Prev][Thread Next] [Date Index] [Thread Index]

Re: Final text of GPL v3

"Steve Langasek" <vorlon@debian.org> wrote in message news:20070630220645.GF4404@dario.dodds.net...

Here I'm confused again. What does making the source code available have to do with patents? Isn't it the case that the license already requires source
code availability?  How does making the source code available help the
patent problem?

First of all the requirement is for *public* availability (even in the case of private distribution), which is not a requirement of the rest of the licence.

I think it is the ffmpeg situation. They distribute code (which allegedy cannot violate a patent), and the end users can download and compile it. I guess the FSF feels that end users are unlikly to be sued for this, although AIUI, under US law they can be sued for that. This only seems to benefit those people who the patent does not apply, such as people in contries that do not allow software patents.

Is the meaning here that the Corresponding Source is only "available" if
there are no patents applying to it? That's the only sensible meaning I can
extract, but the license seems to go about saying this in a rather obtuse

What does (2) really mean? How can one "arrange to deprive [oneself] of the benefit of the patent license" -- by goading the licensor into suing you? :) Otherwise, even if the patent license agreement is terminated on paper, how
do you force the patent holder to still treat everyone "fairly"?

Well, in many cases patent licences require continuing royalty payments. I'm pretty sure that if you start refusing to pay, but continue to use the patent, you will be sued.

I agree that in the case of a licence involving a flat payment for perpetual use, this clause does not do much to level the playing feild, as the patent holder is unlikely to sue somebody who has made all applicable payments, even if they have nominally terminated the contract.

But, ok; in spite of the above doubts, they've done a pretty good job of
closing the patent loophole, and done so in a way that I think is DFSG-ok.

Reply to: