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Re: [XaraXtreme-dev] Example Licences

On Thu, 17 Aug 2006 19:11:19 +0100, Alex Bligh wrote:
> Well (e.g.) from the link you provided:
> 	Finally, for non-software works the "copyright" line included at
> 	the start of the "source code" of the work is modified in language
> 	slightly:
> The whole thing seems to presume something called "source code" exists
> for these designs, as a concept different from "binary form".

The GPL (I'll uses "GPL" here to refer to GPLv2 always) does talk
about "source code" but carefully defines that term as "the preferred
form of the work for making modifications" to the work.

I think that definition is a stroke of genius in the GPL, particularly
because it allows straightforward application to so many different
types of work.

And I don't think the GPL presumes two distinct forms at all.

Only one section of the GPL talks about two separate forms. That is
section 3 which grants an additional permission to distribute an
"object code or executable form" of the work under certain conditions.
If, for any given work, no such form can be said to exist, then all
effective rights granted by the GPL are still intact. One could not
rationally complain about the inability to distribute something that
does not exist.

Another way to look at this is that section 3 only comes into play if
someone desired to re-distribute by relying on the additional
permissions of section 3. Such a person would necessarily have to have
a notion of separate "source" and "object" forms of the work, or else
they could simply rely on sections 1 and 2. So, anyone that relies on
any GPL "assumptions" of two forms must necessarily satisfy that
assumption before it would make sense to want to rely on it.

Similarly, one could point to something like section 2.c which
contains a requirement to "print or display an announcement". But such
a condition also causes no problem since it applies only "if the
modified program normally reads commands interactively when run".

So, sure there are some pieces of the GPL that do not apply to some
forms of work. But I don't see any that would prevent a recipient from
exercising the standard, reciprocal rights of modification and
redistribution that the GPL is designed to grant. Do you?

> It isn't clear (at least to me) that it makes sense, and indeed
> what the potential licensor's obligations are.

Could you be more specific about a situation in which the licensor's
obligations are not clear to you?

>                                                I suppose one
> way to resolve this is to dual-license it under the GPL and the
> CC licenses.

Sure. That could work I think.

> Sadly, the fact people X put Y under license Z does not mean license
> Z is effective for the purpose people X thought it would be.

Certainly not. You had requested a reciprocal license suitable for
non-software that would be accepted as "free" by Debian. I was merely
looking for empirical evidence to suggest that the GPL satisfies those


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