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Re: Copyright: in d/copyright - Questions about writing copyright info

Jongmin Kim <jmkim@pukyong.ac.kr> writes:

> In case of git repository, it is possible to extract all the author's
> information by tracking the commit history.

Bear in mind that copyright law leaves plenty of ways that there is no
connection betwee “person who authored the work” versus “entity who
holds copyright in the work”.

In many cases they happen to be the same entity, but you should not
assume it. Always seek an explicit copyright statement.

> If the upstream is git repository which has a lot of contributors, and
> there is only one person in upstream's copyright file, should I use
> that information? Or can I extract all author's information by myself
> and add them in d/copyright?

No, in my opinion it's not for some external party to assume they know
who are the copyright holders. Always seek a written copyright statement
from whoever *actually claims to be* the copyright holders of the work.

For this reason also, it is a mistake to auto-generate copyright
statements from a Git log of authors. You would thereby make assertions
of copyright status, on behalf of someone else, which they never wrote.

That is both risky (for the Debian Project to have information that
no-one ever claimed was true) and rude (to make legal claims on behalf
of someone else), I think.

> I couldn't find the package 'debian-copyright', but I found a document by
> following the location. Thank you!

My apologies, I meant the ‘debian-policy’ package.

 \       “If you always want the latest and greatest, then you have to |
  `\          buy a new iPod at least once a year.” —Steve Jobs, MSNBC |
_o__)                                             interview 2006-05-25 |
Ben Finney

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