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From "Niall Pemberton" <niall.pember...@gmail.com>
Subject Re: Maven Cobertura Plugin - GPL Javascript files
Date Wed, 21 Nov 2007 14:44:05 GMT
On Nov 21, 2007 1:32 PM, Jeffrey Thompson <jthom@us.ibm.com> wrote:
> "Niall Pemberton" <niall.pemberton@gmail.com> wrote on 11/20/2007 06:26:22
> PM:
> > On Nov 19, 2007 3:42 PM, Jeffrey Thompson <jthom@us.ibm.com> wrote:
> > > Subject to being corrected, I'd expect the answer to be no.  I don't
> think
> > > GPL is on the list of approved licenses for included components of an
> > > Apache project.  Are the javascript files really necessary?  Can
> cobertura
> > > plugin produce a different format output that doesn't require those
> files?#
> >
> > Henri, Jeff, Jesse,
> >
> > Thanks for responding. A release of cobertura with an alternative
> > would be great, but thats not in my control. However I was hoping for
> > "hey no problem, its only documentation" type answers. I just went
> > back and read the (hopefully soon to be official) 3rd party license
> > policy/guidelines here:
> >
> >   http://people.apache.org/~cliffs/3party.html
> >
> > The second and third of the "Guiding principles" talk about "software"
> > and "products that depend on other software". Does this really apply
> > to documentation as well? Its not the software we develop, just some
> > generated reports about the software we develop. Surely that
> > documentation has zero impact on the license of the software we've
> > developed and therefore on the user.
> But, the javascript files are software.  The fact that their use is solely
> to display the documentation isn't the point.  And even if the weren't
> software, if they were just text, there would still be a problem.
> >
> > In the "Software License Criteria" section it says:
> > "The purpose behind these additional requirements are to minimize the
> > chance that a user of an Apache product will create a derivative work
> > of a reciprocally-licensed portion of an Apache product without being
> > aware of the applicable requirements."
> >
> > I can't see how reading a HTML report that uses a javascript file for
> > some display effect places any additional requirements on a user's
> > derivative work?
> But, what if someone wanted to modify the project or combine it with some
> additional software and distribute it commercially?  They would not be
> permitted (because of the javascript files) to use their normal commercial
> license terms, which is what the Guiding Principles are trying to address.
> Because of those files, the combined package would need to have at least 2
> licenses, the normal license for the bulk of the package, and the L/GPL for
> the javascript files.
> >
> > Niall
> >
> What I find surprising is that a development tool would include L/GPL code
> in what is in effect runtime support.  That creates a trap of sorts if the
> user doesn't notice that the tool is embedding L/GPL code in their output.
> Although I wouldn't go as far as saying that all GPL javascript is evil, it
> certainly is troublesome from a licensing perspective.

OK thanks for taking the time to give a detailled answer.


> Jeff
> 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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