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Re: GPL question


From: David Kastrup
Subject: Re: GPL question
Date: Thu, 17 May 2007 16:33:54 +0200
User-agent: Gnus/5.11 (Gnus v5.11) Emacs/23.0.51 (gnu/linux)

address@hidden (Richard Tobin) writes:

> In article <address@hidden>, David Kastrup  <address@hidden> wrote:
>
>>> But the GPL only covers distribution.
>>
>>And copyright law covers derivatives.
>
> So what authorises you to make a derivative of a GPLed program?  I
> thought the FSF's view was that anyone could do that without a
> licence.  If I create a modified version of Emacs and don't distribute
> it, what allows me to?

The GPL and/or copyright law, depending on your jurisdiction and the
details of how you acquired it.  The GPL gives a conditional
permission, but in many jurisdictions and situations, you actually
don't need it since it might be covered by "fair use" as long as you
refrain from redistribution.

>>Trick question already insinuating that the acts are independent.
>
> So presumably the idea is that the two acts together constitute
> distribution of a derivative work?  If so - to go back to my earlier
> example - is the distribution of the Aquamacs source, distribution
> of a derivative work of MacOS X?

In order not to have to rely on a particular interpretation of this
question, the GPL states in section 3:

    However, as a special exception, the source code distributed need
    not include anything that is normally distributed (in either
    source or binary form) with the major components (compiler,
    kernel, and so on) of the operating system on which the executable
    runs, unless that component itself accompanies the executable.

-- 
David Kastrup, Kriemhildstr. 15, 44793 Bochum


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