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Re: Citation requirement and the GPL

From: Christopher Jefferson
Subject: Re: Citation requirement and the GPL
Date: Mon, 28 Mar 2016 10:32:11 +0100

On 28 March 2016 at 00:08, Martin Møller Skarbiniks Pedersen
<> wrote:
> On 27 March 2016 at 23:35, Christopher Jefferson <>
> wrote:
>> I am happy to accept that, but I feel that this requirement violates
>> the GPL, the GPL FAQ specifically covers this case:
> Nope.
> I don't think you are right saying that the GPL FAQ in this section
> covers the GNU parallel case.
> The difference is that the GPL FAQ uses the words "_require_ citation"
> However
> GNU parallel says _please. It does not say you _must_ or _shall_. It says
> "please" and Ole wrote that you "should". He didn't know write "must".
> More precise GNU parallel says as the first line:
> "Academic tradition requires you to cite works you base your article on."
> I think and hope that you agree on that statement.
> And the second line:
> "When using programs that use GNU Parallel to process data for publication
> please cite:"
> _please cite_

These coms back to my original point. To me, saying "please" doesn't
make something optional. With the threat of paying 10,000 EURs if I do
not cite, I would like absolute clarity on if citing is "a nice thing
to do", or "legally required".


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