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From Jeffrey Thompson <jt...@us.ibm.com>
Subject RE: Comments on GPLv3
Date Thu, 14 Jun 2007 20:31:41 GMT
"Lawrence Rosen" <lrosen@rosenlaw.com> wrote on 06/14/2007 03:38:07 PM:

> I'm sure Jeff will speak for himself, but I read his earlier comment as
> saying that the GPLv3 portion of a collective work remains under GPLv3, 
just
> as the Apache portion of a collective work remains under the Apache 
License.
> Nothing in the collective work license (which can be *any* license) 
changes
> those facts.
> 

Larry accurately describes what I tried to say.  To the extent that there 
is a separate copyright interest in the collective work, the license for 
that copyright interest can be any license which does not conflict with 
the individual licenses for each work being collected. 

Under GPLv2, there was an argument that the collective work itself would 
need to be licensed under the GPLv2 (depending on technical issues).  The 
GPLv3 is trying to make it clear that that is no longer the case. 

So, under GPLv3, if you have GPLv3 code, combined in a non-viral way (see 
below) with other non-GPLv3 code in a single 
application/collection/mashup/whatever, that's fine.  The GPLv3 code needs 
to be licensed to the recipient under GPLv3, the other code would be 
licensed under whatever license is appropriate (in Apache's case, probably 
the ALv2), and the license that applies to the collection copyright itself 
could be ALv2 as well.  However, as I said before, its likely that 
Apache's licensing policy would prevent including GPLv3 code directly in 
Apache distributions for the same reasons that GPLv2 code is currently 
prohibited -- license surprise, etc.

Regarding my reference to "dependencies", I'm referring to the definition 
for Corresponding Source.  It includes "all the source code needed to 
generate, install, and (for an executable work) run the object code". 
"[A]ll the source code needed to ... run the object code" is pretty broad. 
 Get a computer, get the GPLv3 code running, keep taking stuff off until 
the code stops working right.  That's the starting set of "Corresponding 
Source".  Then apply the exceptions -- System Libraries, general-purpose 
tools, etc.  What you end up with is what needs to be GPLv3.  In my book 
that's substantially broader than GPLv2 in some areas and substantially 
narrower in others.

So, Apache can depend on (e.g., pre-req) GPLv3 code and that shouldn't be 
a licensing problem.  However, Apache should not distribute any GPLv3 code 
that depends on or requires Apache code to function properly, otherwise 
Apache would need to distribute that Apache code under the GPLv3, and its 
not clear that Apache would have the license rights to do so.

Jeff 

Staff Counsel, IBM Corporation  (914)766-1757  (tie)8-826  (fax) -8160
(notes) jthom@ibmus  (internet) jthom@us.ibm.com (home) jeff@beff.net
(web) http://www.beff.net/ 

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