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Re: License issue on tiny Javascript fragment

In message <[🔎] 498D8AF3.7030903@piglets.com>, Colin Turner <ct@piglets.com> writes
Hi All,

I hope you can help and advise on this issue. I am packaging a web
application for Debian, I am also the principal upstream author. The
code is generally GPL v2 PHP. Over the years the project inherited, from
a side project, a small fragment of Javascript that has no explicit license.

The problem I have is that the code is, like so much JS, sitting
available, apparently for general consumption on several websites. I
have been unable to acquire a license from any of the authors (no reply
to emails) and the code is so astonishingly trivial it's hard to see how
it could possibly be re-implemented without it being the same code with
different variable names.

This is your clue.

Any guidance on what I should do? The functionality the code provides
(counting and capping characters in textareas) is quite useful and
losing it would probably cause dataloss in use of the application.

If this is true, the code has no copyright therefore there is no problem. I'm not sure how you'd document it, but just put a reference to them that says "assumes these snippets cannot be copyrighted because they are too trivial. replace if required".

I'm not sure how the Debian ftp-masters will take that, but if there really is no other way of re-implementing it, then it truly is unprotectable.

Anthony W. Youngman - anthony@thewolery.demon.co.uk

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