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Re: Lawyer request stop from downloading Debian

On 04/24/2011 12:07 AM, Ken Arromdee wrote:
> On Sat, 23 Apr 2011, Stefan Hirschmann wrote:
>> The lawyer wants the poster to pay 700 Euro and stop uploading of Debian.
>> -------------------------
>> My opion is that this behavior is not good for Debian's reputation and
>> the project should take legal action against the lawyer and this company.
> It's my understanding that in Germany lawyers can do this to copyright
> violators even though they are not the copyright holder.  And it's very
> likely
> he's a copyright violator, so there's not much Debian can do.  No, really.
> The GPL V2 requires that if you distribute, you either
> a) accompany a binary with the source code
> b) accompany it with a written offer to give everyone a copy of the source
> code for three years, or
> c) accompany it with an offer to distribute source code, if it's
> noncommercial
> distribution and you received the program inder b).
> It's very unlikely that b or c applies, and most people who torrent Linux
> don't put a copy of the source code in the torrent, so a is unlikely.  The
> problem is that on Bittorrent, everyone who downloads also uploads.  This
> makes it illegal to download just a binary, since if you do that you're
> also
> uploading just a binary, and uploading just a binary is a form of
> distribution
> the GPL doesn't allow.
> Which means he's (probably) technically a copyright violator, just a
> copyright
> violator that everyone has agreed to ignore because the GPL V2 is unwieldy
> that way.  But lawyers in Germany can go after copyright violators who the
> copyright holders ignore.
> The GPL V3 had to have a clause written in specifically allowing Bittorrent
> (see http://www.gnu.org/licenses/gpl-faq.html#BitTorrent) because of the
> problems legally using it with V2.

As absurd as this argumentation sounds to me (but then I'm a mere
engineer and find matters of law often to be very confusing), following
it makes the Debian project a direct accomplice in copyright violation,
see http://www.debian.org/CD/torrent-cd. By providing these torrents,
the Debian project makes everybody in Germany who uses them a copyright


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