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Re: Intellectual Property II


From: David Kastrup
Subject: Re: Intellectual Property II
Date: Sat, 11 Feb 2006 17:19:49 +0100
User-agent: Gnus/5.11 (Gnus v5.11) Emacs/22.0.50 (gnu/linux)

Alexander Terekhov <address@hidden> writes:

> As for installing on multiple computers, I think that it's totally
> OK. For example, I can install it on a computer at my home and on
> another computer at my dacha. The key is that I can't legaly run it
> simultaneously on multiple computers if I own only one copy. As long
> as I don't do that, it's all fine and dandy.

Depends on whether the typical "I agree" "license" is of the same
opinion.  This "ok if run only on one CPU maximum" is part of some
such agreements, but it is not inherent in copyright law.  "Fair use"
would typically entail making a copy for a friend of yours even if
those copies would run in parallel.  It would not entail making copies
for a customer, and not for a fee, and not for a dozen machines.  So
massive parallel internal use is something not covered by copyright:
you need specific permission.

The GPL contains:

    Activities other than copying, distribution and modification are
    not covered by this License; they are outside its scope.  The act
    of running the Program is not restricted,
[...]

so running copies in parallel is ok when you accept the license.  The
problem I see is that the GPL explains the conditions for copying for
the sake of distribution to third parties.  It does not explain
conditions for copying for the sake of running the stuff, and
copyright law does not provide default permission for an unlimited
number of copies for that purpose.

Maybe that is an omission.  You can, of course, pro forma _distribute_
the required number of copies to yourself when heeding the GPL, but
that sounds a bit contorted.

-- 
David Kastrup, Kriemhildstr. 15, 44793 Bochum


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