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

Re: Is AGPLv3 DFSG-free?

On Sat, Aug 30, 2008 at 7:09 AM, Francesco Poli <frx@firenze.linux.it> wrote:
> On Fri, 29 Aug 2008 19:15:35 -0400 Arc Riley wrote:
>> On Fri, Aug 29, 2008 at 5:56 PM, Francesco Poli <frx@firenze.linux.it>wrote:
>> > It says that I must offer "an opportunity to receive the Corresponding
>> > Source of [my] version by providing access to the Corresponding Source
>> > from a network server at no charge".
>> > There's no indication that I can delay this opportunity at will, as in
>> > "yes, to get source click here, but maybe you have to come back
>> > tomorrow".
>> If you setup a system which required a delay, that would be questionable.
> I am not talking about an intentional delay.
> I am talking about something like the following scenario:
> the source-hosting server goes down, while I am on vacation on another
> continent with intermittent access to Internet.  My personal copy of
> the source is on my home computer which is down with the plug pulled
> off.  My vacation has just begun and is going to last, say, five
> weeks[1].  On my first Internet connection I receive an e-mail message
> of a user (which is also one of the original authors of the network
> application I modified!) who informs me that he/she could not download
> the source of the modified network application.
> Clearly, I am *not* going to immediately come back to the airport and
> take the first flight home, in order to re-upload the source to another
> server as soon as possible.
> Am I failing to comply with the license?

First off, are you using the program on the network while on vacation?
If not, there wouldn't be a violation, would there?

If you are using it, by my reading you haven't violated the license,
but cannot modify it further until you come back into compliance. In
particular, section 8 states:

8. Termination.

You may not propagate or modify a covered work except as expressly
provided under this License. Any attempt otherwise to propagate or
modify it is void, and will automatically terminate your rights under
this License (including any patent licenses granted under the third
paragraph of section 11).

However, if you cease all violation of this License, then your license
from a particular copyright holder is reinstated (a) provisionally,
unless and until the copyright holder explicitly and finally
terminates your license, and (b) permanently, if the copyright holder
fails to notify you of the violation by some reasonable means prior to
60 days after the cessation.

Moreover, your license from a particular copyright holder is
reinstated permanently if the copyright holder notifies you of the
violation by some reasonable means, this is the first time you have
received notice of violation of this License (for any work) from that
copyright holder, and you cure the violation prior to 30 days after
your receipt of the notice.

Termination of your rights under this section does not terminate the
licenses of parties who have received copies or rights from you under
this License. If your rights have been terminated and not permanently
reinstated, you do not qualify to receive new licenses for the same
material under section 10.

--- end quote ---

It is arguable that simply running a program does not require a
license, although there's obviously a good deal of disagreement on
that front. In any case however, if you refrain from use until you
restore the hosting, within 30 days, you'd be fine. There's also
section 2:

2. Basic Permissions.

All rights granted under this License are granted for the term of
copyright on the Program, and are irrevocable provided the stated
conditions are met. This License explicitly affirms your unlimited
permission to run the unmodified Program. The output from running a
covered work is covered by this License only if the output, given its
content, constitutes a covered work. This License acknowledges your
rights of fair use or other equivalent, as provided by copyright law.
--- end quote ---

The question here would be, is running a /previously modified/ program
"[running[] the unmodified Program"? And/or would executing a legally
created modification be allowed under copyright law under any case?
(in which case, is the network source requirement enforcable at all?)

Finally, it is my understanding that most legal systems usually are
lenient on honest mistakes, provided one does their best to repair the
mistake as soon as reasonably possible.

Note, of course, that I am not a lawyer, and I might be completely
wrong on some or all of these points :)

Reply to: