Re: [Fwd: Re: [gNewSense-users] PFV call for help.]
On Jan 23, 2008 10:58 AM, Karl Goetz <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote:
Here, for the record - and to save Francesco Poli the trouble ;-) - is
the full text of the relevant section of the krb5 copyright file:
The following copyright and permission notice applies to the
OpenVision Kerberos Administration system located in kadmin/create,
kadmin/dbutil, kadmin/passwd, kadmin/server, lib/kadm5, and portions
Copyright, OpenVision Technologies, Inc., 1996, All Rights Reserved
WARNING: Retrieving the OpenVision Kerberos Administration system
source code, as described below, indicates your acceptance of the
following terms. If you do not agree to the following terms, do not
retrieve the OpenVision Kerberos administration system.
You may freely use and distribute the Source Code and Object Code
compiled from it, with or without modification, but this Source
Code is provided to you "AS IS" EXCLUSIVE OF ANY WARRANTY,
INCLUDING, WITHOUT LIMITATION, ANY WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY OR
FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE, OR ANY OTHER WARRANTY, WHETHER
EXPRESS OR IMPLIED. IN NO EVENT WILL OPENVISION HAVE ANY LIABILITY
FOR ANY LOST PROFITS, LOSS OF DATA OR COSTS OF PROCUREMENT OF
SUBSTITUTE GOODS OR SERVICES, OR FOR ANY SPECIAL, INDIRECT, OR
CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES ARISING OUT OF THIS AGREEMENT, INCLUDING,
WITHOUT LIMITATION, THOSE RESULTING FROM THE USE OF THE SOURCE
CODE, OR THE FAILURE OF THE SOURCE CODE TO PERFORM, OR FOR ANY
OpenVision retains all copyrights in the donated Source Code. OpenVision
also retains copyright to derivative works of the Source Code, whether
created by OpenVision or by a third party. The OpenVision copyright
notice must be preserved if derivative works are made based on the
donated Source Code.
OpenVision Technologies, Inc. has donated this Kerberos
Administration system to MIT for inclusion in the standard
Kerberos 5 distribution. This donation underscores our
commitment to continuing Kerberos technology development
and our gratitude for the valuable work which has been
performed by MIT and the Kerberos community.
Moving on to consider the specific points raised:
> * line 18-21: "Export of this software from the United States of America
> may require
> a specific license from the United States Government. It is the
> responsibility of any person or organization contemplating export to
> obtain such a license before exporting."
> This section may not suit freedom 2: The freedom to redistribute copies
> so you can help your neighbor.
I don't think that clause is a problem. US export laws will (or won't)
apply regardless of what the licence says, so this is really just a
matter of information. It doesn't affect the DFSG-freeness of the
> * line 81-83: "OpenVision
> also retains copyright to derivative works of the Source Code, whether
> created by OpenVision or by a third party." I think this could threat
> this software freedom.
This is rather an odd one. It's not clear in the context of the
relevant paragraph whether this is just making a statement of fact
about the Source Code as you may be using it, or whether it is seeking
to claim ownership of any modifications that licensees make. If the
latter, then I suspect that in a lot of jurisdictions it will not
actually achieve the desired effect - for example, UK copyright law
requires an assignment of copyright to be in writing and signed by the
The question is then whether this interferes with software freedom. If
you create a derivative work from the software, then (making the *big*
assumption that the clause is legally effective) the copyright in that
work, including your modifications, will vest in OpenVision. However,
you still have the benefit of the licence terms as regards those
modifications, so it doesn't interfere with your freedom on a
What it does potentially mean is that OpenVision can *additionally*
license your modifications under non-free licence terms, which many
developers may consider undesirable. But OpenVision would be taking a
risk if they actually did this, given that it is highly doubtful that
they can claim legal ownership of the copyright in licensees'
modifications on the basis of this licence provision.
It probably wouldn't hurt to raise this with OpenVision, if possible.
Do they consider this clause to give them ownership of copyright in
any modifications made to the software, or is it simply saying that
your rights under the licence do not affect the ultimate ownership of
I don't think the DFSG-freeness is affected in either event, but if
OpenVision are trying to claim ownership of modifications then this is
unusual, undesirable and probably ineffective.