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Re: web hosting providers' modified .debs

John Halton wrote:
> However, presumably for many programs licensed under GPL v.3 there
> will be a number of associated non-executable files (e.g. under /etc)
> for which read permissions need to remain in place. If you have a
> GPLed package, I'm not sure what the implications are of "conveying"
> the non-executable files while merely "propagating" (without
> conveying) the binaries.

My first question would be whether those files would contain sufficient
creative expression to qualify for copyright protection. If they don't
(and I am not sure something like /etc/make.conf is 'creative'), then
GPLv3 cannot apply to those files.

The next question would be how you determine from a file in /etc
what the "Program" is as GPLv3 defines it. You could argue that
/etc/make.conf is a separate work (if creative) that is part of
a collective work called 'make'. 

Since I'm entitled to remove parts from a GPLv3 work and convey
only the remaining parts, I don't see anything unlawful about offering
execute-only access to a binary and read access to the manpage and/or
configuration files.


Arnoud Engelfriet, Dutch & European patent attorney - Speaking only for myself
Patents, copyright and IPR explained for techies: http://www.iusmentis.com/
              Arnoud blogt nu ook: http://blog.iusmentis.com/

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