Re: summary of software licenses in non-free
[ I've taken the liberty of cc'ing debian-legal, where license issues
are discussed. -legal readers probably want to drop -vote. Reply-to
On Jan 10, 2004, at 02:57, Craig Sanders wrote:
x3270 seems to be free. IMO, maintainer is overly cautious
I just read the copyright file in x3270 and either this is free, or we
can't distribute it at all, even in non-free.
Copyright © 1989 by Georgia Tech Research Corporation, Atlanta, GA
All Rights Reserved. GTRC hereby grants public use of this
software. Derivative works based on this software must incorporate
this copyright notice.
Strictly speaking, this does not appear to give permission to
distribute the software.
The fonts copyright (if it's even valid, bitmap fonts can't be
copyrighted in the US) is fine, AFAICT.
The copyright notice for the 5250 emulation just reads:
5250 Emulation Code Copyright © Minolta (Schweiz) AG, Beat
This is worrying, as no license appears to be granted. I'd need to
check the source code to be sure.
Either this package should be removed (because we can't distribute it
at all) or put in main, IMO.
edict seems like it may be free. long & complicated license.
Several problems I see:
b. must undertake not to assert copyright over any portion of the
(Prohibits me from enforcing my copyrights, if the edict happens to
misappropriate my work.)
c. may use the file for personal purposes such as to assist with
reading texts, research, translation services, etc.
(This appears to disallow non-personal use, such as commercial use.
However, it must be a no-op because commercial use is explicitly
permitted at the end...)
i. must either make every endeavour to ensure that the versions of
the files they distribute are the most recent available, or must
make the version and date clear and prominent in their
documentation, WWW page, etc. and supply information as to where
and how the most recent version may be obtained.
Blech. We might be able to argue that we make the version and date
prominent, and thus fall under that exception. Otherwise, time to file
a bug on ftp.d.o for removal.
k. may use these files as part of, or in association with a software
package or system. Full acknowledgement of the source of the
must be made both in the promotional material, WWW pages and
Aren't we using these files as part of or in association with a system,
namely Debian GNU/Linux? If so, time for removal.
Any individual or organization in possession of copies of the files,
upon becoming aware that a possible copyright infringement may be
present in the files, must undertake to contact the Group immediately
with details of the possible infringement.
This probably fails the desert island test.
All permissions for use of the files granted by James William Breen
prior to March 2000 will be honoured and maintained, however the
placing of the KANJD212 and EDICTH files under the GNU GPL has been
withdrawn as of 25 March 2000.
This simply put doesn't make sense. It's not clear how you can un-GPL a
work, but they seem to claim to while at the same time saying they're
With regard to the Frequency codes, Mr Halpern has stated as follows:
"The commercial utilization of the frequency numbers is prohibited
without written permission from Jack Halpern. Use by individuals and
small groups for reference and research purposes is permitted, on
condition that acknowledgement of the source and this notice are
Obviously non-free, and probably very silly (see Feist) in the U.S. at
edict-fpw part GPL, part same as edict.
This appears to belong in contrib, not non-free. It sounds like it is
essentially an installer which functions by transforming the non-free
mmix-src part GPL. part Donald Knuth license - modified files
renamed and clearly identified. why is this in
There have been very long arguments on -legal about 'must rename source
files' on -legal.
One reason: Can we modify the files, then distribute binaries produced
from modified sources? I'm not sure; Knuth's licenses are notoriously
mocka BSD-style license with noxious advertising clause. why
molphy very simple license says it is "free software". fails
an explicit clause allowing modification. clarification
would be good, but IMO there is no compelling reason
this can't go in main.
Because copyright law says we can't create derivative works unless the
copyright holder says we can, and he hasn't.
This is a great candidate for contacting upstream to get it freed.
mwavem says license is GPL. why is this in non-free? does it
binary-only driver or something??
No idea. Either the copyright file is wrong (serious bug) or this
belongs in contrib or main.
sgb modified files must be renamed and clearly identified.
why is this in
The renaming problem.
sl-modem-daemon looks like BSD-style license with noxious advertising
why is this in non-free?
No, this is the new BSD license without the clause. No idea why it is
sl-modem-source looks like BSD-style license with noxious advertising
why is this in non-free?
No idea... And, btw, the source in /usr/src seems to include .o files,
someone file a bug...
[ Legal: We should probably go over the rest of the list, it seems that
there are some packages in non-free which are illegal to distribute...