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From Pedro Giffuni <...@apache.org>
Subject Re: GPL'd dictionaries (was Re: ftp.services.openoffice.org?)
Date Sun, 06 Nov 2011 22:18:44 GMT
--- On Sun, 11/6/11, Rob Weir <robweir@apache.org> wrote:
...
> Dennis E. Hamilton  wrote:
> > +1 I heartily agree with Dave's suggestion.
> >
> > The issue has been made very clear by Andrea and I
> think it would be good to raise an issue on the LEGAL JIRA.
>  (Registration required, but I don't think committer status
> is needed.)  Also, legal-discuss@ apache.org is an useful
> place, but my experience is that eventually a LEGAL JIRA
> issue will obtain more consistent attention.
> >
> 
> Just make sure that you explain what a spell checking
> dictionary is.
> Otherwise any legal types will be confused.  This is
> not a dictionary like Webster's, with words and definitions,
> where the definitions are creative content.  A spell checking
> dictionary is more of a word list.

Makefiles are also a basically a list with little or no
creative content and they don't even leave a trace in the code
but we are relicensing them.

I am concerned that we are talking about the GPL. If it
were MPL or a documentation license it would be different
but last time we discussed it we were not accepting copyleft
documentation either.

cheers,

Pedro.
>   I'm not sure what the creative expression is in a
> list of all common
> words in a language and how that could be
> copyrighted.  Of course, I
> am not a lawyer.  But this case seems relevant:
> 
> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Feist_v._Rural
> 
> > I also think Pedro raises an important concern.  My
> sense of other materials I have seen about that is binaries
> (or at least not human-readable and editable) might work
> since it is possible to make it clear that a non-Apache
> license applies and there is no confusion by having source
> anywhere in a release for something with an unacceptable
> license.  I don't know how this applies to the present
> case.  I suspect it has some bearing on how safe inclusion
> of various dictionaries in binary distributions is seen to
> be.
> >
> >  - Dennis
> >
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: Dave Fisher [mailto:dave2wave@comcast.net]
> > Sent: Sunday, November 06, 2011 12:57
> > To: ooo-dev@incubator.apache.org
> > Subject: Re: GPL'd dictionaries (was Re:
> ftp.services.openoffice.org?)
> >
> > HI Andrea,
> >
> > This looks like some good questions for Apache Legal.
> You should send this to legal-discuss@a.o.
> >
> > Regards,
> > Dave
> >
> > On Nov 6, 2011, at 11:06 AM, Andrea Pescetti wrote:
> >
> >> On 05/11/2011 Gianluca Turconi wrote:
> >>> 2011/11/5 Pedro Giffuni
> >>>> I have been looking at the situation of
> the dictionaries,
> >>>> and particular the italian dictionary.
> >>>> You are right that it will not be covered
> by the SGA.
> >>
> >> Sure, and to be more precise there are no portions
> of which Oracle has the copyright in the Italian dictionary.
> And we are discussing about three completeley separate tools
> (this is true of all languages): a dictionary (used for
> spell-checking), a thesaurus (for synonyms) and hyphenations
> patterns. Each has its own licence and copyright holders; in
> most cases, hyphenation patterns come from the LaTeX
> project.
> >>
> >>>> Perhaps more worrying is that the italian
> dictionary is
> >>>> the only dictionary under the GPL; most
> others are triple
> >>>> licensed (LGPL/MPL/GPL).
> >>>> We are not allowed to use it, so it will
> be removed
> >>>> from the SVN server for sure.
> >>
> >> The fundamental thing to consider here is that
> dictionaries cannot be considered like libraries, for the
> following reasons:
> >> - OpenOffice.org dictionaries are not code; their
> binary form is coincident with their source form.
> >> - OpenOffice.org dictionaries are not a
> dependency: they are pluggable data files, and they are
> packaged (all of them, even in the installer for native
> builds) as extensions to remark that there is no dependency
> whatsoever on them.
> >> - OpenOffice.org dictionaries fall in the "mere
> aggregation" provision in the GPL license; even though it is
> customary to distribute a package containing, say, the
> Italian version of OpenOffice.org and the Italian
> dictionary, it is considered the same as distributing an
> Ubuntu ISO file, containing software with different licenses
> aggregated together.
> >>
> >> The existing Apache policy probably assumes that
> we are talking about code and that the (L)GPL libraries
> constitute a dependency, and it was probably built by
> examining what the implications of (L)GPL components would
> have been in that case. But this is a much different
> situation.
> >>
> >>>> I am not a lawyer and I don't have any
> idea how the
> >>>> GPL could be enforced in this case, but
> things are not nice.
> >>
> >> I can't understand these worries about enforcing
> the GPL. We even got an answer from the Free Software
> Foundation that said it is absolutely OK to include GPL
> dictionaries into OpenOffice.org, since it is "mere
> aggregation"; see the (long) story in
> >> https://issues.apache.org/ooo/show_bug.cgi?id=65039
> >>
> >>> We've discussed a lot about this issue, but
>  there isn't any consensus yet
> >>> about *how *to solve the problem, in a
> pragmatic way that doesn't include a
> >>> license change.
> >>
> >> Gianluca is right, in our situation we won't be
> able to change the license of the dictionary and thesaurus
> (at least, not to Apache License); we might get the
> hyphenation patterns released under the Apache License, but
> since virtually all of them are taken from the LaTeX project
> it's probably better that the legal team checks whether it's
> fine to import from the LaTeX project with the existing
> license.
> >>
> >>> An AOOo without a native language GUI and
> linguistic tools would be just
> >>> useless outside the anglosaxon world and,
> indeed, a rather disastrous
> >>> presentation of the new project for people who
> don't speak English.
> >>
> >> Sure, especially considering that the project
> description says that OpenOffice.org supports 110
> languages...
> >>
> >> What I would recommend is:
> >>
> >> 1) Recheck the Apache policy and find out the
> rationale behind it; I have nothing to teach to the legal
> team, but this is a very rare case where the "virality" of
> GPL does not apply.
> >>
> >> 2) See if we can find a way to keep dictionaries
> as they are; note that no dictionary is developed in the OOo
> trunk, they are synchronized from time to time, usually
> before a release; the Italian dictionary SVN trunk, for
> example, is not in the OOo sources. Even just the
> possibility to provide an extension that can be included in
> binary releases would be OK for me.
> >>
> >> 3) If there is really no way to include a GPL
> extension this way, then we should think about downloading
> the extension at installation time. But we managed to get
> Sun and the FSF agree to ship dictionaries in the most
> convenient way (i.e., included in the installer), so we
> might succeed this time as well.
> >>
> >> Regards,
> >>  Andrea.
> >
> >
> 

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