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Re: Use of GPL'd code with proprietary programs


From: Haakon Riiser
Subject: Re: Use of GPL'd code with proprietary programs
Date: 5 Jul 2004 22:50:27 +0200
User-agent: slrn/0.9.8.0 (Linux)

[Alexander Terekhov]

>> I haven't personally read it yet, but I'll do so ASAP.  If this
>> is the case for our license, we have to consider if it's even
>> worth bothering with WMV9. :-(  I can't even believe why they
>> would do such a thing -- are they afraid of getting infected by
>> the GPL license in some way?  Do they mention the GPL
>> specifically?
>
> Potentially viral software. That's all history. MS went CPL (for
> at least two projects) recently.

Just to be sure: s/CPL/GPL/, right? :-)

> And the GPL isn't viral. Your lawyer is correct (but he should
> have mentioned that the scope of the "derivative work" (after
> modifications/transformations) doesn't encompass independent
> works/sections (the GPL just can't cross API/module boundaries)
> even if they are "combined" with the derivative stuff.

OK, thanks.  I will wait a few days to see if more points come up,
and if not, I'll notify the authors of the GPL'd libraries we'd
like to use, and get their opinions as well.  I know that many
(perhaps most?) people use the GPL without understanding exactly
what it means.  Personally, I wouldn't want to restricting linking,
but I /would/ want to prevent companies from making improvements to
the program without giving it back to the community.  Strange that
there's no well-known license for this purpose.

The BSD-style license is a bit /too/ permissive for my taste.
If one builds upon the work of the free software community, I
think it's only fair that those modifications must be released
under a license that is at least as permissive as the original
work, so that the entire community may benefit from it.

GPL has this, but I don't like its intentions to restrict linking,
shared memory, and so on.  LGPL is better, but it's not intended
to support static linking, and it's a bit too verbose.

Perhaps I should write such as license for myself, since no-one
else has.  Problem is, licenses are for lawyers, and I don't feel
comfortable pretending I am one. :-)

Anyway, many thanks to everyone who has helped so far!

-- 
 Haakon


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