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Re: Licensing of modules for libposix

From: Gary V. Vaughan
Subject: Re: Licensing of modules for libposix
Date: Wed, 4 May 2011 16:20:29 +0700
User-agent: Mutt/1.5.20 (2009-06-14)

On Wed, May 04, 2011 at 10:09:47AM +0100, Reuben Thomas wrote:
> On 4 May 2011 10:03, Jim Meyering <address@hidden> wrote:
> >> Further, I've signed a copyright assignment for gnulib, so presumably
> >> it's all copyright the FSF, so why all the canvassing to relicense
> >> anyway?
> >
> > Sometimes, an author will object.
> That's tough, they've already assigned copyright. But if, as you say,
> no-one can speak for the FSF in this matter, then indeed we have to go
> back to the authors.

That's not my understanding:  If you're the author (or if all the authors
agree), and you want to relicense your code, you still have that right,
even though you gave a copy under GPL/LGPL to the FSF, and assigned them

For example, I had thought that if I quietly work away on a huge software
project and release the whole thing under a proprietary license of my
choosing, that doesn't stop me from also assigning copyright to the FSF,
and giving half (or even all) of it to them under the GPL.  And when I've
done that, there's also no reason why I can't carry on working on my
proprietary copy for the next commercial release.  I can even sync up *my*
code between the two copies.  I can't take other people's GPLed
contributions to the FSFs copy into my proprietary licensed copy however.

If you actually wrote all the code (or if all the authors agree), then you
get to license it or relicense it as you please IIUC.

Please correct me if I'm wrong, since I'll need to be more jealous about
what I give away if it turns out that assigning copies of key parts to
the FSF forces me to GPL all the other code I compile with whatever I
wanted to give away!

Gary V. Vaughan (gary AT gnu DOT org)

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