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Re: gnome-screensaver copyright issues

Hi Dennis

On Sat, Jan 23, 2021 at 10:26:33AM +0100, Dennis Filder wrote:
> I recently filed #980212 against gnome-screensaver

Are you a copyright holder of any of the code?

Also I looked at the alleged code segment.  Yes, the comments are the
same and the code shows some resemblance, but you have not checked the
ancestry, where does it come from, and esp from whom.

>                                                    because it appears
> that one if its original developers copied and relicensed MIT-licensed
> code (from xscreensaver) as GPL-2 even though he lacked the copyright
> to it.

The MIT and GPL licenses are compatible, in a way that you can always
add GPL-2 code to MIT code and the combined result will be GPL-2.  This
is what the gnome-screensaver author did, copyied some MIT code, which
he is allowed to, and added GPL-2 code with his own copyright.  There is
no relicensing of the existing code, which remains MIT to this date,
just the statement that the combined code is GPL-2.

He also does not need to hold any copyright to the original code, just
to retain the copyright notices, which might be lacking in this case.

If it needs to ship the original license statement is up to debate,
because the GPL-2 includes a superset of the terms, it requires
everything the MIT license requires, but in different words.

> 1. Should this be escalated?  And if yes: to what severity?

No, esp if you can't show any own copyright on the work in question.


The man on tops walks a lonely street; the "chain" of command is often a noose.

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