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Re: GPL-compatiblity of python licenses



reopen 498857
reopen 498477
thanks

OoO En  cette nuit nuageuse du  vendredi 19 septembre  2008, vers 00:53,
Thomas Viehmann <tv@beamnet.de> disait :

> Hi Vincent,
> thanks for looking into licensing issues in Debian.

> How exactly is the python license GPL-incompatible?

> If you scroll down a screen or two on the license[1] and move your
> attention to the right column, you will find the assertion that all
> recent versions of python have a GPL-compatible license, even indicating
> where the FSF's opinion differs from the python copyright holders.
> In particular, all python versions from oldstable onwards are
> undisputedly GPL-compatible.

Hi Thomas!

I did  not say  that python license  is GPL-incompatible. There  are two
problems:
 - the  fact that readline.so  module is linked  to GNU Readline  is not
   mentioned  in debian/copyright where  it should  because if  the user
   uses  this module in  some non-GPL  work and  distribute it,  it will
   break GPL because GNU Readline is GPL.
 - _ssl.so  is linked  with OpenSSL and  hence is incompatible  with GPL
   without an exception that is  not granted in GNU Readline. Therefore,
   a program cannot  be linked to both readline.so  and _ssl.so.

GPL compatibility only  says that you can mix Python  code with GPL code
and get a valid GPL  code (first footnote in debian/copyright highlights
the  meaning of  "GPL  compatible"). Python  license  is GPL  compatible
however  not every  piece of  Python is  licensed under  Python license.
debian/copyright  contains  some  exceptions.   readline.so  is  another
exception that should be noted in debian/copyright.

The rest of the world don't believe there is no problem with this. Apple
removed GNU Readline of its  Python and replaced it with editline (which
causes some incompatibilities).

About the second  problem, as both readline.so and  _ssl.so are optional
module, I am not  really sure if this is a serious  problem or if a note
could be dropped in debian/copyright about the fact that a program using
both _ssl.so and readline.so cannot be distributed.

I am putting debian-legal@ in copy  to those bugs to get some additional
insights on this matter. I am not a lawyer.
-- 
I WILL NOT AIM FOR THE HEAD
I WILL NOT AIM FOR THE HEAD
I WILL NOT AIM FOR THE HEAD
-+- Bart Simpson on chalkboard in episode 8F13

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