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

Re: Distribution of media content together with GPLv2 code in one package?

On Tue, Apr 20, 2010 at 11:51:43PM +1000, Ben Finney wrote:
> Rudolf Polzer <divVerent@alientrap.org> writes:
> > In case of the voice synthesis application, is it recreating or
> > editing when you re-render the voice using different words, and then
> > perform editing on the resulting file (typically: reverb, EQ, dynamics
> > compression)?
> It's important to recognise that the only answer which matters here is
> that which would be given by a judge if it were ever to be a case in
> court. So there's only so far that hair-splitting like this can take us
> before it becomes moot.
> You have the opinion of several non-lawyers on this matter. At this
> point I advise you to form a provisional opinion on that basis, until
> you seek the advice of your own professional legal advisor.

I am pretty confident that nobody will dare to sue in that "grey area" of the
GPL. Also, the people (id software) whose work is being used under the GPL, and
causes the result to be under the GPL too are themselves of the opinion that
GPL stuff can be freely combined with non-GPL as long as no static linking is
being done, and also have not sued projects who possibly might be in violation
depending on interpretation (like Warsow).

However, my goal is to get the game in _Debian_ and other Linux distributions.
And for that it is required to adhere to DFSG and similar standards, and
interpretation of these regarding non-code seems to be quite open.

Basically, as far as I understood it, for inclusion in Debian, two conditions
are required:
- Debian must be under the impression that the package is properly licensed

Debian for example won't accept a package that is under the GPL and statically
links against a library that is under the CDDL (did I hear anyone saying
"J**g Sch****ng", by the way?), even though both licensed are assumed to be

So basically, my question is:

Would Debian accept a game into "main" that, itself, is released under the GPL,
and contains music tracks for which only a high-quality OggVorbis file and the
project file in the music notation application is provided, even if the software
used to create the music is commercial software, or the music even might use
commercially provided (or CC-BY) samples, assuming these commercial software or
sample files do not restrict the licensing of the resulting file?

I know some projects which actually do that (or even provide no "source" at all
other than the ogg file itself), by the way, and which are in "main", two of which
I mentioned in the original post but won't name here again. I do not want these
games to get into trouble with Debian, and also am not convinced - even less
after this thread, as the opinions on this seem to vary a lot even inside the
Debian project - that these actually are DFSG violations, and thus worth
reporting a bug.

Best regards,

Rudolf Polzer

Reply to: