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

Re: GPL versions mismatch.

In message <[🔎] heciro$o0n$1@ger.gmane.org>, Raúl Sánchez Siles <rasasi78@gmail.com> writes
Anthony W. Youngman wrote:

In message <[🔎] he7933$tg5$1@ger.gmane.org>, Raúl Sánchez Siles
<rasasi78@gmail.com> writes
 From what you've said, I think the way forward is apparent. As you
surmise, accepting GPL v3 contributions isn't possible with the current
project status saying the project licence is v2. Actually, I think you
COULD accept v3 contributions, but to do so you'd need to change the
project licence to v3.

 ...Or to v2+, if I understood correctly.

No. In that case you're granting permissions that the author didn't
grant. Think about it ...

You're given a load of code that is licenced "v3+ plus OpenSSL
exemption". You then put it into a v2+ project ... BIG NO NO. You've
just gone and told all your recipients they can distribute as per GPL v2
- something the v3 author did NOT give you permission to do!

 This brings me a question: if the code is already GPLv2+, who is to take
the decision of stating that the whole project is GPLv2+?. If each
contributor agreed that the code is already GPLv2+, why shouldn't the
project already be considered GPLv2+?

No reason why not. BUT there is a further copyright to be considered - the "compilation" copyright. I'm not sure whether that's its official name, but think of a book of verse. The poets own the individual copyrights to the poems, the publisher owns the copyright to the book.

The "compilation copyright" in this project is, therefore, owned by the project maintainer. Within the constraint that it must be a subset of the licences on the code, he can choose whatever licence he thinks fit, and he has said the compilation is v2. If he wishes to change it to v2+ he can, because that is still a subset of the licences on the code.

And any recipients can pull code out of the project (including pulling ALL the code :-) and distribute that under v2+, too. So it would make sense for the project maintainer to change the project licence to v2+. (Or v2/v3 if he's a bit wary of +, like Linus.)

You said that your authors at the moment are a bit chary about moving to
v3, but you think it's a good idea. What's actually probably a good idea
then is to say that "All new contributions must be v2+ or v2/v3, in
preparation for a move to v3". (Or BSD, or some other GPL-compatible
(both versions) licence.)

 I think I got this: there can't be any GPLv3 code in the project if the
project license is either GPLv2 or GPLv2+, right?

Correct. Because the v2 licence on the project grants rights that the authors did NOT grant on the code. v2 is NOT a subset of v3.

 If I'm right, this means, that no GPLv3 code will ever be able to be used,
and this includes link, unless the license is moved to GPLv3, is this right

Correct. Because v2 is NOT a subset of v3.

 In this case, what happens to those embedded or linked code which is
GPLv1+, for instace?

No problem. Because v2 (and v3) ARE proper subsets of v1+ (note the PLUS in there :-)

That doesn't alter the project's current v2 status. It DOES stop a
developer throwing a spanner in the works by contributing some new
v2-only code which will prevent you from relicensing. And it makes clear
to developers where you are planning to go.

 Ok, now it's turn to convince them about the move.


 Thanks again for the supporting effort.

    Raúl Sánchez Siles
----->Proud Debian user<-----
Linux registered user #416098

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

Reply to: