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Re: GPL and other licences


From: Alfred M\. Szmidt
Subject: Re: GPL and other licences
Date: Sat, 11 Feb 2006 19:49:50 +0100

   > Because the employeer gave me explicit access to the CD.  See the
   > above sentence.

   If I am giving cleaning personnel access to my rooms, that does not
   mean that they are free to read my letters and listen to my music
   collection.

   Access is not ownership.  You don't get when internal use is.

And you are still confysing property with copyrighted works to which
one has been granted legal access.  David, you are a capable person,
but please read what is written.  Your example would be similar if the
employeer only gave me the CD to give it to someone else, i.e. postal
office.  But it has no relation to when you have legally aquired the
content, say by having the employeer say `here, install this on the
server'.  The GPL applies not to the CD, it applies, and let me quote
section 0 for you: This License applies to any program or other work
which contains a notice placed by the copyright holder saying it may
be distributed under the terms of this General Public License.

Does the CD have a notice of this type? No.  Does the content on the
CD? Yes.

   > It is the person who has the GPLed software who can accept the
   > license, not the person who owns the CD.

   There is nothing to "accept" in a license.  One accepts contracts.

Uhm, no.  Not entierly true.  See section 5.  Either you accept the
license, and get to do what the license grants, or you don't where you
can't do anything.

   And no, the rights granted by either contract or copyright are just
   granted to the owner.  The GPL states:

         0. This License applies to any program or other work which
       contains a notice placed by the copyright holder saying it may
       be distributed under the terms of this General Public License.

Thank you for quoting that.  Since the software contained on the CD
contains a copyright holder and since I recived the copy legally from
my employeer to install, or use or whatever, I can distribute it under
the GNU GPL.

   This means that the GPL _only_ grants rights to "licensees".  As a
   worker for a company that has licensed the software, you are not a
   licensee, unless the company chooses to give you license for
   personal use.

And since they gave me a legal copy of the CD, section 6 comes into
play, and I have now _automatically_ recived a license to copy,
distribute or modify the program.

   > For example, I do not own the disk drives on ftp.gnu.org.
   > According to you, since I am not the owner of those disk drivers,
   > I'm not allowed to accept the license.

   Right.  But the rightful owner of those copies grants you access to
   it for the sake of creating your own copies of it under the GPL.
   It distributes the stuff.

   Are you claiming that a company distributes software when used
   internally?  If so, it would have to adhere to

[... snip section 3 from the GNU GPL ...]

   If your employer tells you to use company internal software for
   some task, do you really think you are in a position to demand the
   source code?

Ofcourse I am.  The employer cannot simply disregard all licenses and
laws.

   > According to me, since I'm allowed (legally!) to read the content
   > of the disk, I'm able to acquire a license for the software.

   Wrong.  Because you are granted access for the _purpose_ of
   creating your own copy licensed under the GPL, you are able to do
   so.  The mere access itself (which could have been gained by
   accidental server misconfiguration) is not a license to do so: if I
   leave open the door to my house by mistake, that does not allow you
   to enter and read my books.

Yet another `apple vs. oranges' example.  Your door doesn't have a
license.  The comparison is simply not possible.  You are once again
confusing physical property with intangible works.




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